In a move that should come as a surprise to no one given recent developments from the once mighty International Hot Rod Association, reliable sources are confirming Mike Dunn’s departure from the organization, as reported today by our sister site, Drag Racing Scene.
Dunn, a decorated, second-generation Top Fuel and Funny Car pilot who made a successful transition into the color commentating booth for the NHRA and ESPN, was hired by the IHRA in 2016 to serve as the sanctioning body’s president. His presence was expected to factor heavily into the return of nitro racing to the program, but such a move never materialized, as the professional racing roadmap has been continually pushed. The organization then announced this fall the discontinuation of all championship sportsman drag racing in lieu of a bracket-only program for 2018, putting the writing square on the wall for Dunn’s ultimate parting of ways with the beleaguered drag racing organization.
Owned by IRG Sports + Entertainment and now based in West Palm Beach, Florida, the IHRA has faced its share of struggles over the last decade, and in recent years has not only pulled back on its racing programs, but has purged the majority of its staff, from more than 30 at its Norwalk, Ohio offices to just eight.
UPDATED 12/1: Official Statement From The IHRA
IRG Sports + Entertainment (IRGSE), a leading promoter of sports and live entertainment experiences, announced today that Mike Dunn has been named senior consultant for the International Hot Rod Association (IHRA).