Drag Racing Etiquet
The unwritten rules of Drag Racing
Dozens of rules are subtly enforced around a dragstrip. Unfortunately, many of them are not published anywhere. These rules have to do with the accepted way of doing things. Think of them as Hints for offending as few as possible. We don’t have room to run all of them, but we’ll try to hit the highlights for you. Follow these rules and you won’t look like a rookie, and you may even earn the respect of your fellow racers.
*Don’t start your burnout until instructed by an official. Violate this rule more than once and they’ll probably throw you out.
*Don’t do burnouts in the water with treaded street tires. Water gets into the treads and will be tracked all the way to the starting line. Do this and everyone will be mad at you.
*Don’t do a John Force–style burnout past the starting line unless you’re driving a Pro car.
*Some racers will hit the brakes just before the finish line to prevent breaking out. This is acceptable as long as you don’t lock ’em up. Locking up the brakes is dangerous, especially at high speed. Pulling a stunt like that will guarantee you a spot on the blackball list.
*Many tracks employ the courtesy rule. This requires the first car into the staging beams to light only the Pre-Stage bulb. That car must then wait for the second car to Pre-Stage before either can fully stage.
*Make your dial-in visible from the tower. Note where your dial-in and car number should be placed so they can be seen from the tower, and make sure the numbers are legible.
*Listen for class call and lane assignments for your bracket. A late entry or wrong lane could get you disqualified.
*Don’t open the door of your car and watch the tires spin during a burnout. This is a dangerous procedure, since you’re not watching what is going on in front of you. If you are concerned about heating both tires, set your rearview mirrors so you can see smoke from both tires.