NHRA Senior Vice President-Racing Operations Graham Light, along with NHRA racing stars John and Brittany Force, represented NHRA at the National Motorsports Council of ACCUS, May 2-3, in Washington, D.C. ACCUS, the Automobile Competition Committee for the United States, is an umbrella organization of auto racing sanctioning bodies in the United States.
NHRA’s representatives, along with those from NASCAR, IndyCar, IMSA, and USAC met individually with representatives and senators. Meetings are arranged through the ACCUS lobbyist company, Ogilby Government Relations.
“These annual trips to D.C. provide a great opportunity for motorsports to meet face to face with their elected officials, share concerns, and communicate the economic benefits of NHRA drag racing within their districts,” said Light.
Light’s agenda focused on meetings with representatives whose districts include venues where NHRA events are held, including with Oregon’s Kurt Schrader (Woodburn Dragstrip), Colorado’s Ed Perlmutter (Bandimere Speedway), Washington’s Dave Reichert (Pacific Raceways), Arizona’s Tom O’Halleran (Wild Horse Pass Motorsports Park), Pennslynania’s Pat Meehan (Maple Grove Raceway), California’s Grace Napolitano (Irwindale Drag Strip), and Nevada’s Ruben Kihuen (The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway). In these meetings, which both Forces also attended, they discussed the sport’s economic impact to the district, the growth of drag racing, youth programs, and street racing issues. Light also lobbied for their support in pending bills (i.e., tax depreciation for facility improvements) and the EPA/RPM act.
After the meetings, the sanctioning body representatives attended a reception on Capitol Hill that was well attended by many congressmen and senators. The reception was hosted by the co-chairs of the Congressional Motorsports Caucus -- Reps Bill Posey (FL-8) and Mike Thompson (CA-5) -- as well as vice chair Richard Hudson (NC-8) – who formed the caucus to recognize and pay tribute to the important role of motorsports in our economy.