Are radial tires taking over drag racing? It sure seems that way.
Last fall, the team at Mickey Thompson Performance Tires & Wheels launched a range of new tire lines, all centered around a radial internal construction, and one of those lines was aimed directly at a segment of the sport that is and always has been exclusive to bias ply slicks. That, of course, would be bracket racers, who make up far and away the greatest slice of the proverbial drag racing pie.
These Pro Bracket Radials, featuring the latest and greatest innovations in construction and compounds from the Mickey Thompson engineers, are likely to put a dent in the overall use of bias plies in the years to come, as more racers realize the benefits of radials — that is, better handling at speed, quicker elapsed times and higher trap speeds, and consistency in rollouts (and performance), meaning there’s no need to “match” tires.
Mickey Thompson has launched the Pro Bracket Radial in five popular 15-inch fitments, including 26 x 8.5, 26 x 10, 28 x 9, 28 x 10.5, and 29.5 x 10.5.
The tires, as you probably noticed in the video above, are void of the treads that have been common in past generations of radial tires — these are hybrids to put it best, combining the construction of a radial and the surface of a slick. The best of both worlds? Perhaps. Past NMCA WEST Open Comp champion Justen Spencer is sold on the new tires, pointing to a three mile per hour gain in performance and improved consistency for his program.
We’ll be taking a closer look at (and testing) the Pro Bracket Radial line of tires in an upcoming feature story here on Dragzine, so keep an eye out for that.