NHRA was well-represented as the American Auto Racing Writers and Broadcasters Association announced their 2013 All-America First Team. Sixteen-time NHRA Mello Yello Funny Car champ John Force and 2013 Top Fuel champ Shawn Langdon were voted to the First Team, and Force also was recognized as the Jerry Titus Memorial Trophy winner for the driver having the most overall votes. It’s the fifth time that Force has won the prestigious Titus award.
“It is always an honor to be recognized as an All-America First Team driver,” said Force. “This award is very special because the media is so important to growing our sport. I have to thank all my sponsors — Castrol, Ford, Auto Club, Mac Tools, Traxxas, Freightliner, and BrandSource — because without their support, we wouldn’t be able to do what we love. You want to win every race, and that is always my focus. Winning the championship last year was a great team accomplishment, and we need to keep winning so we can keep chasing Corporate America. I want to keep racing with my kids for as long as possible. My health is good, and I have the fire to keep chasing after these young kids.”
“I am honored to represent NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing and the Al-Anabi Racing team on the prestigious AARWBA All-America team,” Langdon said. “To have my name mentioned with drivers like John Force, Jimmie Johnson, Matt Kenseth, Helio Castroneves, Scott Dixon, and the rest of the drivers on the team is really special, and being named to this team by the media after winning my first NHRA Mello Yello Top Fuel world championship is something I’ll always remember.”
NHRA had four racers on the Second Team with Top Fuel racer Antron Brown and 2013 Mello Yello Pro Stock champ Jeg Coughlin Jr. being joined by retiring Top Alcohol Funny Car and Top Alcohol Dragster champs Frank Manzo and Jim Whiteley, respectively, who were selected in the At Large category.
The American Auto Racing Writers and Broadcasters Association announced its first All-America Team following the 1970 season. A group of special drivers representing multiple forms of professional motorsports is elected each year by AARWBA. The association's members vote on drivers within their participating categories of racing, and the top two from each discipline are elected to the First Team.
Joining Force and Langdon on the 2013 All-America First Team were Dixon and Castroneves (Open Wheel), Johnson and Kenseth (Stock Car), Max Angelelli and Jordan Taylor (Road Racing), Bryan Clauson and Bobby East (Short Track), Donny Schatz and Frank Kimmel (Touring Series), and Sage Karam and Johnny O'Connell (At Large).
Founded in 1955, AARWBA is a motorsports organization comprised of writers, broadcasters, photographers, and other media-related professionals. The organization's charter is aimed at providing not only proper recognition for members of the motorsports media but to recognize their work as well as the work of the competitors that they follow in print, on the air, and on film.