As with much of the motorsports world, Byron Dragway's Firecracker Bracket Nationals was in a state of flux. Then Illinois moved into Phase 4 of its pandemic response, which allows competitive racing with limited spectator attendance. As a result the 21st edition the longest running, and one of the richest bracket races in the U.S. came off as scheduled on June 26-28
Typically a three day event, with $100,000 to win on Saturday, and $30,000 each on Friday and Sunday, Mother Nature altered those plans slightly by raining out Friday's competition before it could start. As a result, Saturday was run as planned, and Friday's prize money would be rolled into Sunday's event.
Limited to 128 Dragsters and 128 Door Cars, the entry list included several touring professionals and hungry regional racers. With one round of bye backs, this would mean nine rounds of racing on Saturday. With post-storm weather conditions already bright, hot and humid when time trials got underway. This would be a challenging day for human and machine. "This race is a marathon, not a sprint." cautioned Byron Dragway General Manager Randy Simpson. "Pace yourselves accordingly!"