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Speedway Group Gets Fast and Furious

10 Apr, 2002 By: Hive News

The latest tie-in for racing blockbuster The Fast and the Furious is, appropriately enough, drag races. Universal Studious Consumer Products Group is working with NOPI (Number One Parts Inc.) to launch the NOPI "The Fast and the Furious" Racing Series.

The multiyear deal between Universal and NOPI also allows for co-branded merchandise and props from The Fast and the Furious at all NOPI races and events. Microsoft will sponsor a trophy -- the Xbox Cup -- for the series' top points winner in the NOPI Drag Racing Association and set up gaming areas at each of the series' events, including the NOPI Nationals Motorsports Supershow in Atlanta.

"Entertainment and motorsports has been a very successful combination for Universal Studios," said Tim Rothwell, SVP of marketing and merchandising, Universal Studios Consumer Products Group. "Over the past few years, we have successfully combined some of our biggest movie franchises such as Jurassic Park, The Grinch and the Universal Studios monsters with a variety of motorsports events."

In addition, the sponsors of the series hope kids interested in illegal Fast and Furious-style street racing will learn to appreciate legal racing at the events. "The underlying goal of this racing series is to educate kids and teens about the dangers of illegal drag racing and get them off the streets," said Michael Meyers, president of NOPI. "It is our hope that the NOPI 'The Fast and The Furious' Racing Series will provide the necessary exposure to street racers that there is a fun, safe and lucrative alternative to illegal street racing."

The eight-race series' first race takes place May 11-12, 2002, at Maple Grove Raceway in Reading, Pa., and its last race happens October 19-20, 2002, at River City Raceway in San Antonio, Texas. The NOPI Nationals Motorsport Show takes place September 21 and 22, 2002 at the Atlanta Motor Speedway.

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