How would you like to earn your NHRA competition racing license…or challenge your friends in a side-by-side dragster competition…or just feel the amazing rush of adrenaline when you’re flying down the 1/4 mile behind the wheel of a dragster? If you want to get the best training in the country and better prepare yourself for competition or you just want to check “drive a dragster” off your bucket list, then please check us out. Dragster Adventure programs start at just $399!
I’m inviting you to join me and my team when we host Frank Hawley’s Drag Racing School classes at Denver and St. Louis in June. Bandimere Speedway (Denver, CO) June 10-12 and Gateway Motorsports Park (St. Louis, MO) June 17-19 are premiere NHRA National event race tracks and offer world class racing surfaces and all the amenities you’d expect. Space is limited, so call us at 866-480-7223 today to reserve your seat in the SC, SG or Bring your own car class or book the Dragster Adventure on-line!
Here’s what some of our recent grads had to say:
“This was by far the BEST WEDNESDAY OF MY LIFE! Thanks to the outstanding program offered by the Hawley group. They are the best. I will be back! I thank everyone involved, Frank, Lana, Jeff and all the rest. My bucket list has 1 less thing to do!” Kevin Crawford, Dragster Adventure Challenge Winner
“I’m still processing my two days at drag racing school. I learned as much about myself as I did about racing, which is what I was looking for. Instead of lecturing about cars and driving, Frank teaches the bio-mechanics necessary to perform a precise task under pressure, and the state of mind needed to do well. Drag racing requires a keen self-awareness and presence in the moment.” Joseph Brown, Super Gas Firebird
“I attended your super comp class on December 2 & 3 in Gainesville and 7 weeks later I have a Top Fuel Dragster license and I couldn’t have done this without the things you teach your students. Thank You!” Shawn Reed, Super Comp Dragster now Top Fuel driver!
“I learned much more than I expected to and had fun doing it. Frank is a terrific teacher! And I’ve had lots of teachers over the years (undergraduate school, medical school and 6 years of surgical residency). The teaching format worked well for novices and experienced racers. The cars worked flawlessly and were equal in elapsed time. I was surprisingly comfortable despite my sizable frame. My diminutive wife was comfortable too. The adjustability of the cars make them the right size for any driver. Derek and Jimmy were a tremendous help before and after each pass. I look forward to returning for the super comp/super gas program. I’ll be bringing my friend Wayne down with me so he can work on his lights too.” Dr. Ron Franzino, Dragster Adventure winner
Please like Frank Hawley’s Drag Racing School on Facebook and follow us on Twitter @frankhawleydrs!
Stephen Sadler, Frank Hawley and film crew
Dream Ignition – a fitting title for the documentary being made on our Australian grad Stephen Sadler. Stephen has cystic fibrosis and we were happy to be a big part of his dream! He earned his Super Gas license during our classes at Auto Club Dragway in Fontana last October.
Please watch the trailer below and be inspired by his story!
(right click on the link if it does not play automatically)
Frank Hawley’s Drag Racing School will start its 2014 West Coast season at Wild Horse Pass Motorsports Park in Chandler, AZ. The world’s premiere Drag School will be conducting Super Comp and Super Gas Competition licensing classes on March 2-3, 2015 and the increasingly popular Dragster Adventure on March 4, 2015.
“We are excited to be heading to Wild Horse Pass Motorsports Park in Phoenix this winter. The weather in Phoenix around that time of year is spectacular. We will be running our classes following the NHRA Divisional race, so race fans from around the country can have a total motorsports experience. They can watch the races and then do some driving themselves,” said Hawley, owner and chief instructor of the school.
Hawley points out that the competition course which can provide drivers with an NHRA 4A or 4B competition license is not just for those who want to go racing. “In every class we have ever held we have had experience levels that ranged from veterans to folks that have never staged a car,” said Hawley. “Over the years we have worked very hard to develop a curriculum that never talked over someone’s head. I have always believed it is essential that we offered classes where everyone felt comfortable no matter their age or gender and that we provided an atmosphere where each person could enjoy themselves,” added Hawley. Racers can also choose to attend one of Hawley’s lectures on ‘Personal Performance Development’ which is offered as part of the Competition classes. Many of today’s top professional and sportsman racers have attended and greatly benefitted from Hawley’s teachings.
On March 4th you, your friends, your employees or your customers can enjoy the 10-second Dragster Adventure or race side-by-side in the Dragster Adventure Challenge! No experience necessary and you can book the program on-line!
So whether you want to earn your license, improve your skills, check one off your “Bucket List”, upgrade your current license, or try the new Dragster Adventure with Side-By-Side Racing, we hope you’ll join us in Phoenix for an experience you’ll remember forever!
Check us out at www.frankhawley.com or call us at 866.480.7223!
Here’s a few quotes from some of last year’s Phoenix grads:
“Best experience I’ve ever given myself! I would be forever blessed if I only retained even a quarter of what I heard & learned… Thank you!” Windy
“I just want to drop you a short note to thank you all and most of all Frank for giving me opportunity to get my License. I learned a lot in class and a lot of it I have applied to my business (American Walk in Coolers) the idea of staying calm and not to over react to things that happen which are out of our control was great, there was a ton of other things I leaned and I thank you Frank, It was all good stuff.” Gene
“ I wanted to thank everyone at the school for their help and a special thanks to Frank . I ran my first race this past weekend and ended up going to the finals with over 30 cars in the field and finished runner up running a super pro class with a local drag club.” David
Follow Frank Hawley’s Drag Racing school on Facebook and Twitter @frankhawleydrs
We have confirmed a number of 2015 class dates at Gainesville, Phoenix, Fontana, Denver, St. Louis and Norwalk! More dates will be finalized soon at these and some additional tracks. Please check our website for a class date near you – https://frankhawley.com/class-dates-locations/ !
And don’t forget you can visit us in Gainesville this fall and winter and enjoy the Florida sunshine! We will be running our popular “New Year’s” class on December 30-31, 2014, where you can earn your competition license in your car or our Super Comp or Super Gas cars to 7.50!
For those wanting to move up to faster cars, we have a number of dates available for the Top Dragster, Nostalgia Funny Car or the Alcohol Funny Car or Dragster in Gainesville.
Upcoming Class Dates –
November 4-5, 2014 Super Comp/Super Gas – Gainesville, FL
November 19-20, 2014 Top Alcohol Dragster – Gainesville, FL
December 2-3, 2014 Super Comp/Super Gas – Gainesville, FL
December 4-5, 2014 Pro Stock Motorcycle – Gainesville, FL
December 4-5, 2014 Top Dragster – Gainesville, FL
December 30-31, 2014 Super Comp/Super Gas – Gainesville, FL
January 20-21, 2015 Super Comp/Super Gas – Gainesville, FL
January 22-23, 2015 Top Dragster – Gainesville, FL
February 3-4, 2015 TD/FC/Alky – Gainesville, FL
February 10-11, 2015 Super Comp/Super Gas – Gainesville, FL
March 2-3, 2015 Super Comp/Super Gas – PHOENIX, AZ
March 4, 2015 Dragster Adventure – PHOENIX, AZ
March 17-18, 2015 Super Comp/Super Gas – Gainesville, FL
March 19, 2015 Dragster Adventure – Gainesville, FL
March 24-25, 2015 TD/FC/Alky – Gainesville, FL
April 15-16, 2015 Super Comp/Super Gas – FONTANA, CA
April 17, 2015 Dragster Adventure – FONTANA, CA
June 10-11, 2015 Super Comp/Super Gas – DENVER, CO
June 12, 2015 Dragster Adventure – DENVER, CO
June 17-18, 2015 Super Comp/Super Gas – ST. LOUIS, MO
June 19, 2015 Dragster Adventure – ST. LOUIS, MO
July 20-21, 2015 Super Comp/Super Gas – NORWALK, OH
July 23, 2015 Dragster Adventure – NORWALK, OH
July 24, 2015 Dragster Adventure – NORWALK, OH
Additional Top Dragster/Alcohol dates on request…
More 2015 dates coming soon!
Contact us at 866-480-7223
Nostalgia drag racing has experienced tremendous growth over the last several years and one of the most popular categories is Nostalgia Funny Car. With so many new teams and drivers entering this class, Frank Hawley’s Drag Racing School is now offering training specifically for aspiring Nostalgia Funny Car drivers. “We’ve offered training in both Alcohol Funny Cars and Dragsters for years,” said Hawley. “Many of today’s NHRA Pros trained at our TAFC program before entering the NHRA Nitro Funny Car class. Over the last few years we’ve also licensed several drivers in our alcohol cars that were headed to the Nostalgia class. There are however a few differences between driving a pedal clutch, 3-speed alcohol car and a centrifugal clutch car. So we have developed a program that will provide drivers with the exact same routine they will be using in the Nostalgia cars. The car is set up to drive like a Nostalgia car, complete with a Crower centrifugal clutch.” “I had a great time racing the Chi-Town Hustler with Austin Coil back in the 80s. Those cars were a blast to drive. And I even got a chance the past few years to get behind the wheel of the restored Chi-Town Hustler owned by Troy Martin. It’ll be a lot of fun to help drivers get up to speed to race in the Nostalgia Funny Car class. Also, the class will prepare and license drivers for any fast 125″ wheelbase car. There are many drivers that race these cars in an index class and this will be the perfect program to get them started in the right direction,” said Hawley. If you’d like more information on this or any other program, contact the school at 866-480-7223.
There are likely thousands of people far more qualified to write this than am I. I never served in the armed services, although I have tremendous admiration for those that currently serve and those that have. I did not know Jon Cavaiani his entire life but was fortunate enough to meet him several years ago and got to learn what an amazing man he was. And I’d like to remind the racing community that this past week our country lost a true hero.
I was introduced to Jon by Roger Burgess a number of years ago. Roger, also a vet, served with Jon for several years and the two had become close friends. Roger had also been a big supporter of the Medal Of Honor Society of which Jon was a member. When I was first introduced to Jon I must admit I was a little nervous however Jon made it instantly apparent he did not see himself as an important person. He was welcoming and not the least bit intimidating. His voice was raspy from a battle injury, his walk was stiff from another battle injury, his smile was huge and his handshakes and hugs were bigger. He laughed all the time.
I was working with R2B2 Racing at the time and Roger would host several Vietnam vets at each race. Jon would fly in for these ‘get-togethers’ to meet and spend time with each of the vets. If you took time to stand back and watch the interaction between Jon and the Vets it was amazing. They of course had the utmost respect for him but he also did for them. He was so giving of his time. He would talk to them about Drag Racing or their family or their time in the service or anything else. It was on these weekends that I also got to spend time with Jon.
I might guess that you don’t know the details of Jon’s story, his time as a POW, or why he was selected to receive the “Medal of Honor”. I think you should. You should buy a book about all of the Medal of Honor heroes or at the least search the internet and read about some of their stories, especially Jon’s.
One important point I’d like to share about the MOH members. They didn’t “win” the Medal Of Honor. It wasn’t a contest. It wasn’t a lottery. They didn’t do what they did, to earn the Medal of Honor. Not one of them was seeking this prestigious award. What they did was demonstrate incredible courage to protect and save the lives of others while placing their own lives at risk. It was a selfless act.
Jon pointed out to me once that there were definitely many, many more acts of selfless courage that never got reported simply because no one survived to tell the story.
The last time I was with Jon was in Washington DC. A friend of ours, Bob Pence, hosted a “Christmas Concert for the Troops” at the Kennedy Center. My wife, Lana and I were told we could bring a guest. We immediately thought of Jon. I was not sure if he would make the trip across the country for one night but I called to ask. He said that if it was a tribute to the “troops”, he’d be there. That night at the Kennedy Center I saw, among many others, a US Army General wait in line to shake Jon’s hand. I sat next to Jon while he was introduced to the audience of thousands which gave him a standing ovation and when the evening was over I watched him slowly descend a flight of stairs carefully holding the railing. I asked him if he was hurting tonight? He laughed out loud and said he was always hurting! Jon was a man who gave everything and asked for nothing in return.
I remember being at a race with Jon. We’d lost first round and exploded a motor. I was sitting in the pits more than a little dejected. Jon walked over and asked what was wrong. I told him we’d had a bad day. He smiled kindly, put his hand on my back and said, “Frank, I’ve seen bad days…this isn’t one of them.”
If you never got to meet Jon, I wish you had. He would have added something to your life.
Last week there were 80 living Medal of Honor recipients. This week there are 79.
To Sergeant Major Jon Cavaiani, a man who lived in the arena…thanks for your kindness and service.
We already miss you.
It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.” ― Theodore Roosevelt
Frank Hawley’s Drag Racing School will return to hold its most popular course, the two-day Super Class, at Summit Motorsports Park in Norwalk, Ohio. The one and only 2014 stop for the school at the premiere NHRA facility will be held July 21 and 22.
“There are different reasons drivers attend our courses,” said school founder Frank Hawley. “Some are looking to get a competition license while others just want to drive a fast dragster and check another item off their bucket list. Every class has a combination of experienced racers and folks that have never been down a drag strip. The course is designed to work for drivers with various levels of experience.”
“We hold our classes at many NHRA tracks. The staff, as well at the entire Summit Motorsports park facility, is one of the best you’ll find anywhere in the country,” said Hawley. “The Bader’s make us, and our students, feel very welcome and give us a superb surface in which to conduct our course.”
The two-day Super Class allows drivers of all backgrounds the opportunity to earn their NHRA competition driver’s license in the school’s Chevy Performance 572/720R equipped Super Comp Dragster or Super Gas Firebird, with some drivers even leaving the class with both licenses, all while being able to take in Hawley’s Personal Performance Development lectures.
No experience is necessary to take the course and several spots are also available for drivers to participate in the class utilizing their own car for training, as well.
As with any of the Frank Hawley Drag Racing School classes or locations throughout the U.S., space is very limited for the class to be held July 21-22 at Summit Motorsports Park. A few seats are still available, so don’t miss the opportunity to work with the Two-time NHRA Nitro Funny Car World Champion, Frank Hawley, when the school makes its one Ohio stop for 2014.
See our complete list of all upcoming class dates and locations on our website or call us at 866-480-7223!
Recently a group of corporate executives got their first introduction to NHRA Drag Racing courtesy of John Force Racing, Just Marketing, Inc. and Frank Hawley’s Drag Racing School. The group attended and competed in Frank Hawley’s Dragster Adventure Challenge at the Strip in Las Vegas. The private session included members of a number of America’s top companies.
“We are constantly working to grow NHRA drag racing as well as our race teams. In order to grow our sport you’ve got to get people excited about it and I couldn’t think of any better way to do that than to get them behind the wheel of a dragster,” said Force. “Hawley and I have worked together for years and I don’t know anyone else I’d want to represent John Force Racing and our sport more than Frank Hawley and his team.”
“It’s always a lot of fun to work with John,” said Hawley. “John’s entire team was there – John, Robert, Courtney and Brittany. Each one of them pitched in and helped make this a memorable day for all of the participants. Everyone was thrilled when they got the chance to get behind the wheel and blast down the track.”
Following rides in the school’s 2-seat race cars, each participant made practice runs in the school’s Adventure Dragsters prior to competing in the side-by-side Dragster Adventure Challenge.
“I was impressed, but not surprised by how competitive these folks were. They absolutely loved the side-by-side racing,” said Hawley. “It was a great day that would not have been possible without the great planning and organization of the folks at Just Marketing. They handled everything from a cocktail reception the night before to road signs and decorations in the suites! They are a very well organized marketing group and a pleasure to work with.”
Frank Hawley’s Drag Racing School operates at tracks across the country. If you or your group is interested in the Adventure of a lifetime, check out the school at www.frankhawley.com or give them a call at 866-480-7223.
By Jeff Smith
Photos by Mike Morgan and Jeff Smith
For 28 years Frank Hawley’s Drag Racing School has been the leader in drag race driving instruction and licensing. Thousands of bracket and class racers and many of today’s Pros are on the graduate list.
This year the school has added a new program, the Dragster Adventure. The Dragster Adventure puts drivers behind the wheel of a real competition-styled 230” wheelbase dragster and lets them race in “side-by-side” competition!
Unlike the cars in Hawley’s well-known “Licensing Programs” which require a medical and two days of instruction, the Adventure Dragsters are powered by ZZ454 Chevy big blocks which are a milder version of the school’s 572 c.i. competition engines. However, even the ZZ454s are a little too powerful and to keep the cars away from 9-second runs, as per NHRA licensing requirements, the engines are throttled back to produce 10-second, 130 mph performances. But don’t think for a minute that these cars aren’t fast…they’re really fast!
The design of the cars, allows students to get up to speed in a half-day course and if they choose to, enter into ‘side-by-side’ eliminations in the afternoon. So when Frank invited me to do some racing at the Media Challenge, I jumped at the chance.
The race was at Auto Club Dragway in Fontana, CA which was re-opened this spring. I joined a number of other journalists for the one-day course offered by Hawley. The event was to promote both the re-opening of the Auto Club Dragway and the return of Frank Hawley’s Drag Racing School to Southern California.
To add a little excitement to the race and to give some folks much needed advice, Hawley invited John Force Racing driver Robert Hight and Don Schumacher Racing driver Jack Beckman (a veteran Hawley school instructor), as guest instructors. Nitro FC racer Jeff Arend, a sales rep for Hawley, joined in to help coach the media.
It all sounded like great fun, but these are very quick dragsters and just like you wouldn’t put a neophyte in an aircraft with no instruction, the same is true with these dragsters. First, we spent an hour or so with Frank in the classroom going over the intricacies of how to drive his dragster, then we moved outside where we were fitted with helmets and the all-important safety gear and driving suits. Finally, we learned how to get in and out of that tight cockpit so at least we looked like a 20-year veteran.
Once we had the basic instructions committed to memory, it was time to drive the cars. We first had to perform a burnout, stage the car, react to the ‘Tree’ and make an 1/8th-mile pass. Once we’d managed that successfully under Frank’s and the rest of the coaches watchful eyes, we returned to make a full quarter-mile run and prepare for qualifying, which would be based on Reaction Time.
The format for the race was a .500 Pro Tree, and a handicapped start with dial-ins. 5.0 Mustang and Super Ford magazine’s KJ Jones hit a perfect 0.000 reaction time to take the top spot in qualifying. On the other end of the field was Car Craft’s Douglas Glad who red lighted and therefore found himself at the bottom of the ladder. Using a Pro ladder, this placed Jones and Glad against each other in the first round. The rest of the field also paired up based on their qualifying times.
Although we were given instructions on dialing the cars in, each participant had to choose their own dial-ins. There were a few variables to consider including the drivers weight, the order the cars ran, temperature changes and more. Both Beckman and Hight helped their respective teams figure out how to negotiate the dial-ins based on each car’s previous best e.t.
The first matchup promised to be exciting as Glad had to take on top qualifier Jones. Both reaction times were within 0.005-second giving KJ the ever-so-slight advantage. KJ slowed only 0.008 against his 10.62 dial-in which seemed close enough to deliver the win, but Glad nailed his, running right on his 10.78 dial to take the win. First round also saw several racers forget to pull their shift lever back into First gear after the burnout, which meant the car left in high gear. Among the victims of this oversight were the author, Henry De Los Santos, and at least one other. Racer Alex Rogeo looked good in her first pass with an impressive 10.45 on her 10.44 dial-in. This was impressive given all the variables, but she has lots of bracket racing experience so she knows the bracket game well.
Hot Rod’s Elana Sherr transitioned to the second round as did Camaro Performers’ Nick Licata, Vette’s Steven Rupp, Speed Scene Live’s Donnie Couch, and Car Craft’s Douglas Glad. Alex beat Elana in the all-girl race when Elana broke out after pulling off an excellent reaction time advantage, Couch put Calin Head out with a great start, and Rupp beat his buddy in an in-house duel when Licata redlighted.
For the semi-final round, Glad met Alex the Car Girl. Glad nailed the ‘Tree but slowed against his dial-in giving Alex the win light when she ran dead on her 10.32 dial-in. That produced the closest race of the event with a 0.023-second margin of victory. On the other side of the ladder, Couch bested Rupp when the ‘Vette editor gave away a 0.063-second advantage on the starting line when he slowed against his dial-in. This gave us the final round of Alex The Car Girl versus Couch The Big Guy. Couch got the slower dial-in head start and both cut lights within 0.016 with Couch taking the advantage. Alex had been living on the edge of her dial-in all day and the gamble finally caught up with her when she broke out by a scant 0.020-second but it was enough to give Couch the win and the champion’s trophy.
Hawley’s Dragster Adventure program is an absolute blast. It is the only place where you can learn how to drive a 130 mph dragster and race it in competition in one single day. Hawley takes this program around the country to various tracks and it’s the perfect way to spend a day with your friends or for a company outing.
Check the school’s website www.frankhawley.com and see when they’ll be in your area.
Thanks to the Hawley’s and the staff for a great day!
Click on the link below to read about what we’ve been up to so far this year! It’s been very busy indeed!
Frank Hawley School News – March 2014
We have lots more exciting things going on! More updates coming soon!
Contact us to schedule your Adventure or License Course!