Written by Bobby Bennett; Photos by Ron Lewis.

RLP rl3 8694With rumors running rampant of their withdrawal from the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series, the Ford Motor Company released a statement regarding their future in drag racing.

“Ford is not getting out of drag racing,” the statement read. “We are fully committed to continue our support of grassroots sportsman drag racing with our Mustang Cobra Jet, parts support and contingency programs. Enthusiasts and production-based racing is at the heart of what we do.

"We have, however, made a business decision to conclude our team sponsorships and support in the NHRA Mello Yello Series at the end of the 2014 season. This decision was based on an ongoing assessment of our motorsport programs’ effectiveness and the strategic alignment with our company objectives globally.”

The teams affected most by this decision are John Force Racing, Tasca Racing and Tim Wilkerson Racing. Both are locked into deals which expire at the end of 2014.

“For Ford to make a decision to pull out of professional drag racing, I truly believe they have underestimated the passion and loyalty of the NHRA fans,” said Bob Tasca III. “It is a sad day for all Ford drag racing fans. Tasca Racing has no plans to leave the sport. I have already begun working on sponsorships for the 2015 season and beyond. Expect a big announcement from Tasca Racing sometime next season. Until that time, I look forward to a successful 2013 and 2014 season with Ford, Motorcraft and Quick Lane.”

Larry Morgan, one of the front-running Ford drivers in the Pro Stock division, buys his engine parts through Ford. He is uncertain how today’s announcement will affect his program.

“We don’t get money from Ford, so I cannot say that it will affect me,” said Morgan. “If they stop making the parts it would affect me. But, for now, I have plenty of parts.”

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