7000 Las Vegas Blvd. N
13th annual SummitRacing.com NHRA Nationals
Tickets: www.lvms.com; 800-644-4444; 702-644-4444
Radio Frequency: 103.9 FM
As if Las Vegas weren’t loud and ostentatious enough in its own right, the city hosts the fire and fury of the NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series twice each year, this event in the spring and the crucial penultimate stop on the schedule in the fall. Contested at The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, a crown jewel befitting this glitzy city, the event has become a pivotal stop on the tour. Race teams often light up the scoreboard with performances one wouldn’t normally see at 2,100 feet.
2011 recap: Robert Hight became the first racer in the event’s 12-year history to win twice in Funny Car, Mike Edwards hit the jackpot for the second straight year in Pro Stock, and Antron Brown won his second race in the last four outings in Top Fuel. For the trio of winners — all of whom started the weekend at 5-1 odds posted by New York-New York Hotel & Casino — the weekend definitely was about having the hot hand because air and track temperatures soared to season highs, testing the mettle of drivers and tuners alike.
How to Get There: From the Las Vegas Strip and downtown, follow Interstate 15 north to Speedway Boulevard (Exit 54). Follow signs to the main parking area.
Visitor Information: Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority, 702-892-0711; Las Vegas Reservation Systems, 800-397-3342; www.lvms.com