Safety is Foremost

Safety is Foremost

  • 1 Drivers, All cars are subject to N.H.R.A./I.H.R.A. rules and specs that apply to your vehicle and category. You are responsible for knowing and implementing these regulations. Copies are available thru IHRA.
  • 2 Sportsmanlike conduct at all times.
  • 3 There shall be no alcoholic beverages in the race cars on the track or in the staging lanes. If you are suspected of drinking too much, you will be asked to leave the staging lanes.
  • 4 3-Wheelers, Skates, Bicycles, etc., are not allowed on premises. 4-wheelers are to be tow vehicles, and Golf carts are allowed. Persons must have a driver's license to operate 4-wheelers & golf carts. 
  • 5 Seatbelts and helmets shall be fastened during burnout and approaching the starting line.
  • 6 Dragsters and open-front-wheel cars shall be allowed one (1) burnout through the lights. Full-bodied cars will be held back.
  • 7 If you leak anything on the starting line, you shall be backed off.
  • 8 You shall not stage until your opponent has presaged or unless you have been instructed to do so by the starting line manager.
  • 9 Glass containers are not allowed on the property. Broken glass damage race tires.
  • 10 When you stage, you buy it.
  • 11 No unauthorized personnel will be allowed on the race track. Press personnel, photographers, camera crews, and pit crewmen must report to the tech man at the head of staging.
  • 12 Race cars must pass through "tech," and your tech card must be filled out and turned in at "tech located lanes 10 & 11
  • 13 No deep staging will be allowed.
  • 14 No holding of cars or bikes during burnout.
  • 15 Speeding vehicles or careless driving in the pits is strictly forbidden, and it may result in your having to leave the race track.
  • 16 Once eliminations have started, there will be no time trials until after the eliminations. There will be no substitutions of vehicles or drivers.
  • 17 No pets (dogs, cats, etc.) are allowed on the premises of Gulfport Dragway.
  • 18 If you test on the top end of the track, helmets and safety equipment must be fastened.
  • 19 Persons working the staging lanes are there to move the mass of machinery by two, safely, smoothly, and swiftly down the race track. Lanes numbered odd 1, 3, 5, 7, & 9 will use the left lane, and even-numbered lanes 2, 4, 6, 8, & 10 will use the right lane. However, if this is not always possible, you will be told what lane to get into. Either go down the track or get on the trailer.
  • 20 Drivers, do not start your burnout until the drivers attempting to stage have gone from the starting line.

Rainout is good for the current calendar year and is determined by management.

Requirements to Be Considered
a Street Car

Gulfport Dragway
  • Pass Safety Tech
  • Working Windows
  • Door Slammer
  • Operational Headlights, Brake Lights, Tail Lights
  • Nitrous Permissible
  • Wheel Tubs Are Permissible, Mufflers
  • Glass Windshield
  • Trailered Through a Gate Permissible
  • D.O.T. Tires ONLY
  • Line Locks Permissible
  • Long Pants and Helmet
  • No Electronics 
Gulfport Dragway

ET Conversions

ET Conversions
12.99 & Quicker Convertibles 8.25 & Quicker
11.00 & Quicker 7.35 & Quicker
9.00 & Quicker 6.00 & Quicker

General Regulations & Safety Guidelines

General Regulations & Safety Guidelines
  • Driver Apparel: Long pants, full-toed shoes, and shirts are required. No shorts, tank-tops, bare torsos, etc., allowed. Appropriate clothing is mandatory.
  • Fire Gloves: SFI approved, required on all open-bodied cars, and full-bodied cars running 9.00 (6.00) or quicker, and 140 MPH or faster.
  • Fire Jacket: SFI approved, required on cars running 11.00 (7.35) or quicker.
  • Fire Pants: SFI approved, required on all open-bodied and full-bodied cars running 9.99 (6.39) or quicker and 135 MPH or faster.
  • Fire Shoes: SFI approved, required on all open-bodied super/turbocharged, nitrous equipped, or alcohol powered cars. Recommended for any open-bodied car.
  • Helmet: SNELL or SFI-approved helmets are required. Full-face helmets with shields are required on any open-bodied cars & all cars running 9.99 (6.39) or quicker. The shield must be down upon leaving the starting line. Approved crash helmets must be strapped and worn properly.
  • Neck Collar: Required in any open-bodied car. And ALL full-bodied cars running 9.00 (6.00) or quicker and 140 MPH or faster.
  • Arm Restraints: Required in any open-bodied car.
  • Battery: Wet cell batteries must not be relocated in the driver or passenger compartments, and batteries must be securely mounted. All relocated batteries must be secured with a minimum of (2) 3/8″ diameter bolts or rods. The passenger compartment must have a firewall consisting of a minimum of .024″ steel or .032″ aluminum if the battery is relocated to the rear of the vehicle. A marked master disconnect must be on the back of the car. Plastic battery hold-down straps, coat hangers, bungee cords, etc., are not allowed. 
  • Carburetor: Must have an effective throttle-return spring (TWO are recommended). Also, a breather, flash shield, or spark arrestor is recommended.
  • Catch Can: All water-cooled cars must have an approved radiator overflow catch-can that is 16 oz. Minimum and secured properly.
  • Drive Shaft Loop: All cars running SLICK/STREET SLICKS must have a safety loop encircling the drive shaft that is mounted not more than 6" behind the front U-joint. All cars running SLICK/STREET SLICKS must safety loop encircling the drive shaft that is mounted not more than 6" behind the front U-joint.
  • Fuel Cell: All fuel cells must be mounted properly and vented out the back or the bottom of the car. Plastic cells must be grounded properly with a ground strap. The cell must be isolated from the driver compartment with a sealed firewall to prevent fuel from leaking in.
  • Fuel Filter: NO GLASS filters allowed. Must be of metal or plastic construction.
  • Fuel Line: There can be no more than a total of 12" rubber fuel lines in a car. Either ensure that a hard line is in place or use an approved braided steel line.
  • Harness 5-Point: Seat belts are required. Stock belts are fine until a car reaches 11.00 (7.35) or quicker or 12.99 (8.25) for convertibles and 140 MPH or faster, or if it is equipped with a roll bar/cage, regardless of ET. At this point, an SFI-approved 3" wide, 5-point harness is required. The shoulder straps should be secured behind the driver below the plane of their shoulders.
  • Hood: All full-bodied cars are required to have a hood.
  • Lug Nuts: Each wheel shall have the OEM number of lug nuts fastened securely. If using open-end lug nuts, the wheel stud shall protrude into the hex portion of the nut at a distance that is at least equal to the diameter of the stud. See Wheel Stud. 
  • Neutral Safety Switch: A functioning neutral safety switch is required on all vehicles. 
  • Nitrous System: System DOT-approved NOS bottles must be secured properly with a minimum of 2 straps. If the bottle is in the driver compartment, it must be vented properly out of the car. Solenoids and nozzles must be mounted properly in the engine compartment. Blanket heaters are permitted; no open flame heating.
  • Roll Cage/Bar: All cars running 11.00 (7.35) or quicker or 12.99 (8.25) for convertibles and 140 MPH or faster must have at least a 6-point roll cage, a 5-point harness, and a fire jacket. The cage must also be padded everywhere that any part of the driver's body (hands, feet, head, etc.) may come in contact with the cage while properly harnessed in the driver's seat.
  • Shifter: Stock shifters are fine. Any after-market automatic shifter must be equipped with a spring-loaded, positive reverse lockout, and a neutral safety switch is mandatory.
  • Taillight: For night-time racing, all cars shall have at least one working tail light that is visible from the tower and the starting line upon leaving the starting line and exiting the track. Blinking and hazard lights are not permissible.
  • Tires: All tires must be in good condition (not dry rotted, etc.) and cannot be space saver doughnut-type spares.
  • Wheel Stud: Each wheel shall have the OEM number of wheel studs, with lug nuts fastened securely. If using open-end lug nuts, the wheel stud shall protrude into the hex portion of the lug nut at a distance that is at least equal to the diameter of the stud.
  • Window Net: Required on any car running 9.00 (6.00) or quicker and 140 MPH or faster. Recommended on any car that has a roll cage.
  • Windshield: Required on all full-bodied cars. Lexan is allowed.

E. T. Considerations

E. T. Considerations

The ET breakdown listed below must follow the guidelines above, plus:

12.99 (8.25) and Quicker Convertibles only: Roll cage, 5-point harness, and a fire jacket.
11.00 (7.35) and Quicker Roll cage, 5-point harness, and a fire jacket.
9.00 (6.00) and Quicker Master battery disconnect (regardless of where the battery is mounted), neck collar, fire pants, gloves, and a window net.

Speed Considerations

Speed Considerations

The above guidelines come into play at a specific elapsed time, but some are also applicable if a car runs a certain speed. At 140 MPH, regardless of the E.T., all cars must have a roll cage, window net, and a master battery-disconnect switch. When a car reaches 150 MPH, it must have a functioning parachute, but it does not have to be deployed.

BRAKES Rear Mandatory
IGNITION Functional "kill" switch
HELMET Full-face Helmet With a Shield
PROTECTIVE CLOTHING Leather or Kevlar Jacket, Leather or Denim Pants, Leather Gloves, & Above the Ankle Boots 
THROTTLE Incorporate a "Snap Back" Response Action
TIRES "Smooth" Roadway-type Tires. Dirt Type Prohibited. 
ADDITIONAL The Properly Secured Seat, Foot Pegs & Handle Grips
BRAKES Front Mandatory
IGNITION Functional "Kill" Switch or a Factory Tip-over Switch is Required on 0-9.99 1/4 Mile and 0-6.99 1/8 Mile Vehicles
HELMET Full-face Helmet With a Shield
PROTECTIVE CLOTHING Leather or Kevlar jacket, leather or denim pants, leather gloves, & above ankle boots. Any rider running quicker than 9.99 1/4 mile or 6.99 1/8 mile must have leather pants. Pants are not required to be zipped together. Nylon or textile jackets & pants are NOT PERMITTED
THROTTLE "Snapback" Throttle
TIRES "Smooth" Roadway-type Tires. Dirt Type Prohibited. 
ADDITIONAL The Properly Secured Seat, Foot Pegs & Handle Grips
Gulfport Dragway

Car Numbers & Dial-ins

Car Numbers & Dial-ins

Car numbers & dial-ins must be displayed on the passenger side window and upper passenger windshield. It must also be at least 6″ minimum height for side window & 4″ on the windshield. The number & dial-in must be visible to the tower.

Dial-in’s cannot be changed once leaving the staging lanes. Dial-in’s cannot be changed in case of a rerun.

Once the driver “stages” with the display of the dial-in on the scoreboards & dial-in boards, he has accepted the dial-in, right or wrong.

Rules & regulations are designed for the driver’s safety & convenience. It also provides the orderly conduct of racing events. These are intended as a guide for the conduct of the sport. They are no way a guarantee against injury or death to participants, spectators, or others.

Contact Track Officials Monte, tower manager or Jeff, track manager.

Bracket Drag Racing

Bracket Drag Racing

Bracket drag racing is an equal opportunity sport in the world. Men and women, young or old, all have an equal chance. Anyone can win bracket racing with any car, truck, or motorcycle. All you have to do is drive consistently. It makes no difference if your car is fast or slow because the races are based on a system where the slower car gets a head start.

Drivers make time trials during the first part of the day.

Time trials are practice runs; on each run, the elapsed time (ET) is electronically measured and presented to the driver on a computer printout. The elapsed time is the time it takes to get from the starting line to the finish line. After time trials, drivers study their elapsed time printouts and try to predict what their cars will turn on the first run of eliminations (actual competition).

The driver's elapsed time predictions are dialed into the starting line computer to determine the handicaps.

As two cars pull to the starting line, the computer compares their dial-ins and gives the slower car a head start via an earlier go signal from the computer-controlled Christmas Tree.

If you decide to race, the first stop inside the gate is the tech area; teaching-in only takes a few minutes. The official checks tires, steering, brakes, battery, and anything that might be a safety hazard. Any well-maintained highway car will pass tech; when this is done, the officials assign a number to that vehicle. Next, you find a pit area. The pits are where the race cars are worked on and where drivers leave their gear and crew members. There are two unwritten laws of pit etiquette: First, pedestrians let the race cars have the right of way. This is done because many race cars are towed or coasted through the pits to keep the motors cool. Second, being in the pits gives you up-close access to all the racing machinery; therefore, the rule is to look, don't touch.

The staging lanes are where the drivers line up and wait to make a run down the racetrack.

The staging director and starter ensure the cars flow smoothly and safely, and their word is the law.

The bleach box is where the cars spin the tires in water. The process is called water burnout, and it is done to get the tires hot and sticky for better traction.

A drag strip is two race strips in one; each lane has its starting and timing system and functions independently of the other. One lane can be inoperative, and the other will still function perfectly.

The starting system for each lane consists of the Christmas Tree and two beams of light aimed across the starting line. The Christmas Tree is the pole on the starting line with the amber, green and red lights.

The topmost and smallest bulbs are the pre-staged and stage lights. Next are three amber countdown lights; next are the green-go-light and the red-foul light.

As the front tires roll into the first light beam, it signals the tree and lights the pre-staged bulb. You're in the second light beam a few inches further, and the staged bulbs come on. At this point, the driver is supposed to be ready to race. The starter waits a few seconds and starts the Christmas Tree. It blinks down – amber-amber-amber, green, a half second between bulbs, one-and-a-half seconds from the first amber to green; that is all there is to it.

The green light is your signal to go, but it is only a signal. The elapsed time will not begin until the front tires move out of the light beam; this never changes. The front tire triggers the elapsed time computer, not by the signal.

There is a time-recording related to the green signal: It's called the reaction time. Reaction time is computed in thousandths-of-a-second; it tells how quickly you moved off the starting line (out of the light beam) after the green light.

On the other hand, if you leave the starting line before the green light, you will be disqualified via a red light / foul start.

At first, it might seem ridiculous that anyone would leave too soon, but the reaction time is so important that drivers try desperately to cut the green light as closely as possible. Because the front tires must roll a few inches before they are out of the light beam, practiced drivers have floored the gas and have their cars moving while the last amber light is still on, but they know their cars and themselves so well that they do not break the light beam until the green has flashed. It takes practice and concentration.

Separate lines painted at the finish, each having its own set of lights, are marked with cones. The lines are 66 feet apart and are called the traps. Crossing the first line starts the MPH computer; crossing the second line stops the elapsed time computer, which started when the car left the starting line. It is also the finish line and is exactly 1320 feet from the starting line.

We have enough shutdown area to stop a 290 MPH dragster, with three exits: one at 1550′, another at 2000′, and the last at 4500′.

Paralleling the drag strip is the return road. All drag strips are one way – never turn around and return via the drag strip.

The dial-in is used to determine the handicap start. Based on your time trials, the dial-in is what you think you will turn in your next run, which will be the first round of eliminations (actual competition).

The dial-in is written to the hundredth-of-a-second on the passenger windows with white shoe polish. As the competitors approach the starting line, the tower personnel enter the dial-ins into the computer, which programs the Christmas Tree and gives the slower car a head start.

During eliminations, dial-ins may be changed between rounds. You may never have an elapsed time quicker than the dial-in. If you do, you break out and are disqualified.

The dial-in handicap works like this. Say your dial-in is 20.00 seconds, and your opponent dials in at 19.00 seconds; you will get a once-second head start. That is, your opponent will get his signal one second after you get the signal.

When all the cars in a bracket have made a run, it is called completing a round. Each run has a winner and a loser, so half the cars are eliminated once a round is completed. Even with 100 cars in the bracket, it only takes seven rounds to crown the bracket winner. During eliminations, a breakout is an instant loss. If both cars break out, the car breaking out by the least is the winner. The red light is also an instant loss. If you flash red light, you cannot win. If your opponent flashes red light, you cannot lose. Also, if your opponent red lights, the breakout rule is waived. The bye-run is a lone run given to a randomly chosen car because of an unequal number of cars in a round as determined by a random or ladder sheet.

During time trials, both sides of the Christmas tree count down together. During handicap eliminations, the count down is staggered because one side of the tree starts before the other.

Christmas Tree Layout
XmasTree Layout

Gulfport Dragway

Golf Cart, 4-Wheelers, Scooters, etc. Regulations

Golf Cart, 4-Wheelers, Scooters, etc. Regulations
  • All Golf Carts, 4-wheelers, Scooters, etc. Must Abide by the 20 Mph Speed Limit
  • Must Have Headlights and Taillights
  • None of the Golf Carts, 4-wheelers, Scooters, etc. Will Enter the Pedestrian Area
  • Must Have a State-issued Driver's License to Drive or Maneuver Any Golf Carts, 4-wheelers, Scooters, etc
  • One Person is Allowed Per Seat, and a Child Under One Year of Age is an Exception to This Rule.
  • All golf carts, 4-wheelers, scooters, etc., are only allowed to enter the staging lanes if towing a race car. Once the race car goes down the track, the golf carts, 4-wheelers, scooters, etc., must leave the staging lanes.
  • Golf carts, 4-wheelers, scooters, etc., cannot come up the fire-up road unless towing a race car. Once the race car goes down the track, the golf carts, 4-wheelers, scooters, etc. must leave the fire-up road

Right of Way at Gulfport Dragway is:

  • 1 Race cars
  • 2 Pedestrians
  • 3 Golf carts, 4-wheelers, scooters, etc

Violators will be issued no warning. There will be immediate removal of the golf cart, 4-wheeler, scooter, etc

Violators can lose golf carts, 4-wheelers, scooters, etc., privileges for a year or more.



The rules and regulations herein are designed to ensure the orderly conduct of racing events and to establish minimum acceptable safety requirements for such events. These rules shall govern the condition of all events, and by participating in these events, all participants are deemed to have complied with these rules. NO EXPRESSED OR IMPLIED WARRANTY OF SAFETY SHALL RESULT FROM PUBLICATIONS OF OR COMPLIANCE WITH THESE RULES AND/OR REGULATIONS. They are intended as a guide for the conduct of the sport and are in no way a guarantee against injury or death to a participant, spectator, or official. The race director shall be empowered to permit minor deviation from any of the specifications herein or impose any further restrictions that, in his opinion, do not alter the minimum acceptable requirements. NO EXPRESSED OR IMPLIED WARRANTY OF SAFETY SHALL RESULT FROM SUCH ALTERATION OF SPECIFICATIONS. Any interpretation or deviation of these rules is left to the discretion of the officials. Their decision is final.

Gulfport Dragway