Don’t let anyone tell you these aren’t the good old days.
In what may well go down as a chapter in drag racing folklore and talked about for years to come, SFG Promotions’ SFG500 big-money bracket race being held at Michigan’s U.S. 131 Motorsports Park has become a high-powered Woodstock — racers from across the country have flooded the facility and forked over a princely sum for a crack at the richest payout in history, resulting in a record — and perhaps overwhelming — number of entries. And the racing has gone virtually around the clock to accommodate them all.
The five-day race bracket bonanza, which on Saturday will award a guaranteed $525,000 to the winner — the richest single payout in the history of the sport — saw a reported 650-plus entries vie for the $20,000-to-win contest on Wednesday, and an incredible 712 for Thursday’s $50,000 payday. Wednesday’s event spilled over into Thursday, with Kyle Cultrera finally pulling out the victory at around 1 p.m. Thursday afternoon.
Thursday’s event kicked off immediately following the completion of the Wednesday race, and it took seven full hours to complete the first round of eliminations. With buybacks in play, it wasn’t until 2 a.m. that the second round was finally completed and SFG staff pulled the plug until morning.
Yet another $50,000-to-win race was scheduled to begin at 8 a.m. this morning but with Thursday’s race still incomplete as of press time, the SFG staff is in the unenviable position of figuring out how to fit races that take the better part of 24 hours to complete into….well, less than 24 hours. More than 500 entries (factoring in car/driver double entries) are already set for Saturday’s $525,000 main event that, at the present rate, should be complete sometime on Tuesday.
SFG’s staff, led by CEO Kyle Riley, set out to make history, and they’re doing so in more ways than one. And SFG isn’t done here: on Independence Day 2020, racers will return to U.S. 131 to compete for the first guaranteed $1 million winner’s prize in drag racing history.