Prudhomme and Lombardo to Skip New Drag Race

The unveiling of a new drag race on the National Hot Rod Assn. circuit will be missing something from the outset: some of the sport’s biggest names.

While many racers have packed funny cars, crews and spare pistons for travel to the first NHRA Keystone Nationals in Maple Grove, Penn., others, such as Don Prudhomme of Granada Hills and John Lombardo of Newhall have skipped the race for different reasons.

Prudhomme said his Trans-Am hasn’t been running to peak since he broke the International Hot Rod Assn. record in June. He is fifth in the NHRA standings. “It’s (the funny car) just not consistent. It keeps hitting and missing. We hit 266 (m.p.h.) at Bristol (Tenn., in the IHRA Spring Nationals) earlier this year--then bingo--it went the other way.”

A number of drivers agree with Prudhomme that, between the NHRA and IHRA schedules, there is too much racing and too little time.