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Chris Smith makes bid for 2019 Top Fuel Harley title

2018 AMRA Top Fuel Harley champion Chris Smith has committed to full-time NHRA competition in the Mickey Thompson Tires Top Fuel Harley class in 2019.
29 Jan 2019
Jacob Sundstrom, NHRA National Dragster Associate Editor
News
Chris Smith

Chris Smith will make his first full-time bid for the 2019 Mickey Thompson Tires Top Fuel Harley championship. The 2018 AMRA Top Fuel Harley winner, competing with PTS Racing, made his NHRA debut in 2017 and will continue to compete with team owner John “Red” Rhea.

“I have raced on two wheels since I was five,” Smith said. “I was exposed to racing by my father Frank Smith, which allowed me to explore various types of racing such as flat track, but my ultimate passion is drag racing.”

Rhea shares similar passion for drag racing as his rider, who also was the 2012 AMRA Nitro Funny Bike champion. 

“Partnering with Chris in this venture was a no brainer,” Rhea explained. “He is a natural competitor, has proven to be a success on and off of the track, and is willing to put in the work to make sure our program is second to none.”

The chase for a championship begins for all riders at the 50th edition of the Amalie Motor Oil NHRA Gatornationals. Smith will battle against the likes of 2018 champion Tii Tharpe and his teammate, 2017 champ, Jay Turner. 

“I have been very blessed to be able to compete and secure championships in multiple classes,” said Smith. “Red and I decided it was time for a new challenge, time to elevate our program and race against the best in the world. We’ve had success, it’s now being able to prove that we can crossover into the NHRA and showcase just how dominant PTS Racing can be.”