Rapisarda Autosport International and team driver Wayne Newby return to the NHRA Mello Yello series at the 61st Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals, held at Lucas Oil Raceway Indianapolis on August 31-Sept 5.

“The Indy Nationals is the biggest and most important event on the NHRA calendar,” explained team owner Santo Rapisarda. “For the Americans, it’s the one event that all the team owners want to win. The pressure is intense. But, for the Rapisarda family, the situation is a lot more relaxed. We race for fun and the love of the sport. The team enjoys racing at Indy. We have a workshop there and it’s been our home base for the last couple of seasons when we race in America.”

“We want to succeed and do well, but I tell my boys, Santo Jnr, Santino, and all the team that we need to keep racing in perspective. Try hard, do your best, and take pride in your work. With 20 cars entered in Top Fuel our goals are straight forward and modest. We want to qualify, put on a good show on race day and have fun.”

For Newby, the U.S. Nationals will be the second time he has raced for RAI in America.

“Anytime you are invited by the Rapisarda Family to race is an honour and a privilege,” according to Newby. “The first order of business is to qualify. We are under no illusion regarding the challenge we are facing. This year, in NHRA Top Fuel, there has been a quantum leap with the leading teams running times that were unimaginable12 months ago. Steve Torrence holds the record with a 3.67 set a couple of weeks ago at Sonoma in California and to make the cut at Indy I think it will take around a 3.75.”

There are five rounds of qualifying from Friday to Sunday. Racing on Monday. Australia time.