Winterport Dragway

Revised March 6th, 2016

Winterport Dragway Handbook Disclaimer

Winterport Dragway is an unsanctioned independent drag strip. The rules outlined in this handbook are designed to help facilitate an orderly flow for race events and set forth minimum requirements for all participants. Winterport Dragway, although not sanctioned, will use the current IHRA and/or NHRA rulebooks as its guidelines. This book is intended as a guide for the conduct of the sport and with no expressed or implied warranty of safety.

General Rule Statement

All individuals who enter Winterport Dragway are the invitees of the management of the Winterport Dragway Association. Permission to currently occupy and/or attend future events can be revoked at any time, at the discretion of the management. All vehicles that enter into competition are subject to a safety inspection at all times and the tech official or the track manager will reject improperly prepared vehicles.


Purpose of Handbook

This handbook is designed to familiarize the new racer and as a refresher for those who have participated previously at Winterport Dragway. All racers are responsible for knowing and understanding the contents of this handbook prior to racing at Winterport Dragway.


Racing Format

Please refer to current Winterport Dragway Schedule


Entry Fees

Please refer to current Winterport Dragway Schedule



Super Pro: Any car using a delay box. (No time break).

Pro: Any car not using delay boxes. – No throttle stop timers or computers other than OEM allowed. (No time break).

Street: There are 3 classes for street legal vehicles: Import/Sport Compact, Street Trophy, and Pro Street. All vehicles in these classes must be in street legal trim, registered (no dealer plates unless owned by the driver) and safety inspected (unless specifically exempted by Maine state laws). All tires must be DOT approved and closed exhaust is required. Computers (other than OEM), delay boxes, multi-stage rev limiters, trans-brakes, electric or air operated shifters and starting line rpm controllers are not allowed. High-end rev limiters, enhanced PROM chips, and aftermarket ignition systems are permitted. There are no ET restrictions on these classes. All vehicles must comply with the "General Rules" and safety requirements for their ET and/or dial-in. Burnouts are allowed, but only DOT approved Street slicks may use the water. All treaded tires are limited to dry burnouts only and may not pass through the water box. Line locks are permitted in all Street classes. The "Cool down" time provided in the "General Rules" section does not apply to any Street Class. All competitors must be prepared to "hot lap" entirely at the discretion of track management.

1. Import/Sport Compact class will be limited to 4 and 6 cylinder street legal vehicles only. Motorcycles are not allowed in this class. Mini-trucks may compete as long as they comply with all other provisions. These vehicles may compete for trophies or run a "Gamblers Race*" at the discretion of track management (primarily depending on car count). This class may become eligible for the Points System if a minimum of 4 drivers pays the required points entry fee.

Note: The Import/Sport Compact class will only be run if there are 4 or more competitors. Otherwise, competitors will be moved to the most appropriate class for their vehicles and equipment.

2. Street Trophy class is open to all street legal vehicles, including Import/Sport Compact.

3. Pro Street class (no time break) will normally run a "Gamblers Race*" with competitors eligible for entry to the Points System.

Note: A "Gamblers Race*" is when all competitors pay a fixed sum (usually $10.00) to the pot. First round "buy backs" are allowed. The total pot, including "buy back" money, is divided 70% to the winner and 30% to the runner-up.



Motorcycles/snowmobiles: All run, except that Delay Boxes may not be used. If a delay box is installed all wires to it must be unplugged or disconnected.

Jr. Dragsters: All run


Time Trials

Classes: All time trial sessions will be announced according to the class over the PA system. In addition, each class will have a different colored flag, which will be displayed, near the starting line area. All vehicles must run in their designated class unless the track manager has granted special permission to run at a different time. Failure to do so may result in the loss of a time trial. After Eliminations begin, time trials are NOT permitted until the vehicle has been eliminated, unless the vehicle is entered in a different class with a different driver.

Flag system:

Super Pro: Red flag

Pro: Blue Flag

Street: Yellow Flag

Bikes/Sleds: Green Flag

Jr. Dragsters: Purple Flag

Special Event: Purple Flag

Point System

Entry fee must be paid before any points are accumulated. All vehicles must stage and break the starting beam under its own power in order to receive the round win and the points. Ten points will be awarded for entering the race and for each round won thereafter. In an effort to prevent any ties, additional points will be awarded as follows:

Winner: 3 points

Runner-up: 2 points

Semi-finalist: 1 point

Points will be posted every week at the track, in the Bangor Daily News and on our web site. Any discrepancies must be brought to the attention of the track manager within two weeks of the race in question.

At the end of the season there will be a championship awarded in each of the four classes. Each champion will be recognized at the banquet at the end of the year. In the event of a tie there will be a run-off to decide the exact placement. The run-off will take place at the end of the last points race. If a competitor is not present, the driver involved in the tie must stage their vehicle and make a single pass to earn the win. If neither racer is present and/or cannot stage their vehicle then the tie breaker will be decided by using the driver with the most high ranking placements during points races.


General Rules

Boundary Line Violations: Any vehicle that crosses the outer boundary line will be disqualified from competition. The first or worst rule will be in effect during all elimination rounds. Intentional crossing the line to avoid debris in that lane will not be considered a disqualification.

Breakage/Mechanical Failure: A vehicle is considered race ready when they cross the top of staging. If a vehicle loses fire or stalls and cannot be restarted, it will be disqualified. Crewmembers are not allowed to assist or touch any self-starting vehicle once it has entered the burnout area. If a vehicle loses fire in the staging lanes and cannot be restarted, it will be disqualified if his opponent is ready and has staged his vehicle. If both competitors agree, they can move to the back of the staging lanes, however, the run must be completed during that round. Under no circumstances will there be a delay of 30 seconds or more. If a breakage happens after the launch, STOP! If your vehicle breaks during eliminations and cannot make the next round you are out of the race.

Break Rule: If a vehicle breaks after receiving the green light, the vehicle does not need to finish the pass to receive the win; however, the vehicle must record a reaction time to validate the win.

Burnouts: Burnouts are limited to the concrete pad and are not permitted anywhere else on the facility. The only vehicles that are allowed across the starting line during their burnout are dragsters and altereds. These vehicles should not proceed with their burnout until instructed to do so by a track official. Pay close attention to the starter because he/she is there to assist you. He/she is in total control of the starting line area procedure. He/she is there to help make your pass as safe as possible by monitoring your vehicle for potential hazardous conditions. Detecting problems at the starting line can eliminate down time and save you from expensive and unnecessary repairs.

Buy-Backs: After the first and/or second round is over, individuals who lose have a chance to re-enter the race for a fee that is equal to the original amount paid for the first round. Buy-back entrants will race each other unless there are an odd number of entrants, in which case they will race the first available first round winner and lane choice will go to the first round winner. Buy-backs will not earn any points, nor will they be eligible to receive a bye-run until all other racers have had one.

Bye-Runs: Bye-runs are awarded to the racer on the top of the ladder. No racer will receive an additional bye unless all other racers have also received a bye or are buy-backs. If the situation arises that all competitors left in eliminations have had a bye or are buy-backs, a coin flip will be utilized. If your competitor cannot make the pass it will not count as a bye run.

Camp-Outs: The track is available to those racers who are traveling from far away and would like to come the night before or for those racers who just like to camp out. Call and set up an appointment so the gate can be unlocked and you can enter. The only requirements are that you keep the noise level down, keep the gate secured at all times and no damage is done to the racing surface and facilities. If the rules are not obeyed, race day privileges can be revoked as well future racing events and camp outs.

Cell Phones and Communications Devices: Drivers are not permitted to use cell phones during competition. Any in car or in helmet communications are prohibited in any race vehicle.

Center Line Violation: A vehicle hitting a foam reflector or crossing the center line will be disqualified. The first or worst rule will be in effect during all elimination rounds.

Children: All children are the responsibility of the parent/guardian. All children 10 years and under must be accompanied by an adult at all times. Bikes, big wheels, scooters, skateboards, roller blades/roller skates or small-motorized vehicles will be allowed if the child is accompanied by a parent/guardian. The items are not to be ridden in or near the staging lanes or burnout area.

Cool Down: Under normal conditions, cool down time will be 15 minutes between rounds. Special consideration will be given during high temperature days. Failure to answer the call of the track official will result in a disqualification.

Courtesy Staging: Courtesy staging is always in effect whether in time trials or eliminations. Both drivers must pre-stage before proceeding to the stage or deep stage position. One warning will be given during eliminations with the second violation resulting in a disqualification.

Credentials: All drivers must possess a valid state driver’s license to race, except that the Track Manager may allow a Teen Driver with a valid learner’s permit to compete in any Street Class if he/she has successfully completed 1 full year at Winterport Dragway as a Teen Racer or Junior Dragster driver. Motorcycle drivers must possess a valid state motorcycle license. Snowmobile racers must also have a valid state driver’s license.

Crewmembers: Drivers are responsible for the conduct of all of their crewmembers and any penalties resulting from their actions. Crewmembers are not allowed to touch the vehicle once it has entered the burnout area. The only exception is to back the car out of the burnout area in case of a break.

Deep Staging: Deep staging is allowed with the requirement that DEEP be written on the side and front window of the vehicle. The racer that wishes to deep stage must stage his vehicle first. It is not up to the starter to wait for this to happen. A missed deep stage does not constitute a re-run.

Dial-Ins: Dial-ins and drivers numbers must be clearly and legibly posted on the driver’s side window and right side of the windshield. Dragsters and altereds place their dial in on the left rear tire, bikes on the gas tank or rear tire and sleds above the left ski. Once you have pre-staged your vehicle you are agreeing to your dial-in and/or your opponent’s dial-in that are displayed on the scoreboards.

Drug and Alcohol Policy: Absolutely no possession or use of illegal drugs or alcohol will be allowed during the course of a race event. If you are found to be in possession or under the influence it will result in an immediate disqualification from competition with a loss of points accumulated and eviction from the premises. Re-admittance to Winterport Dragway will be left up to the discretion of the track manager and the Winterport Dragway Association. After you have completed competition and during camp-out weekends (also after completion of that day’s events) the consumption of alcohol is permitted, but we promote smart drinking and participants are still subject to the laws of the State of Maine.

Grey Water/Septic Tanks: The dumping of any tank is forbidden on the premises of Winterport Dragway and you will be liable for any cost of clean up and fines.

Hazardous Waste: Oil, gas and antifreeze must be dumped into containers that are housed in the tower. Any racer or crewmember dumping such waste or failing to notify track personnel of a spill will be subject to penalties. The penalties include, but not limited to, eviction from the track (with no refund), loss of points accumulated up to and including the day of the race and liability for any clean-up or fines incurred by Winterport Dragway. Suspension will last as long as there is an outstanding bill for clean up and fines.

Illegal Entry: Any individual caught attempting to illegally enter the track will be immediately evicted for that race and the remainder of the year.

Ladder: Pairings for the first round in Super Pro, Pro and Bikes/Sleds will be drawn using your tech card after the finish of time trials and will be posted at the base of the tower. Each round thereafter will also be posted at the bottom of the tower. Any problems or questions should be brought to the attention of the track manager prior to the start of the next round. It is the responsibility of the racer to know whom they will be paired against in the next round.

In Street Money/Point Class, racers report to the tower when instructed to do so and pay to enter the race. The 1st round pairings will be a random drawing and laddered thereafter. These will also be posted at the base of the tower.

Street Trophy 1st round pairings will be a random drawing and laddered thereafter. These will also be posted at the base of the tower.

Lane Choice: It is up to the drivers to decide which lane each will run in. If it cannot be mutually decided on, track officials suggest the use of a coin flip.

Multiple Entries: Multiple entries are allowed in different classes (i.e. street and pro class), but it is not the responsibility of the track to wait for any competitor. Missing the call does not result in a re-run.

Nitrous Oxide: Nitrous Oxide is permitted in accordance with the current IHRA and/or NHRA guidelines.

Numbers: Winterport Dragway will issue you a car number when you enter tech. Tech will make every attempt to grant your request for a certain number. Once you have been issued a number, that is your number and it is a form of racer id (one racer and one number for the whole season). In the event you have a second car for a certain event a temporary number will be issued for that event. The number can be used on other vehicles as long as the racer is the same. The use of another individual’s number will result in a disqualification.

Payouts: All racers must submit a complete and signed tech card to receive any purse money.

Protests: Any driver wishing to enter a “protest” must meet with the track manager. A quick inquiry and fair investigation will take place by a track official. All decisions of the track manager and track officials will be final.

Public Address Announcements: Racers should listen or tune into the track radio station for important track announcements such as lane assignments, time trials for your class, track sponsors and other track happenings. The public address announcer in some cases will broadcast your message if time permits (this does not include announcing a racer’s sponsors).

Race Entry: All racecars are considered race ready after they have turned in their tech card and have passed tech. If a vehicle breaks during time trials, a refund of the race entry fee will be granted.

Rainout Policy: No refunds will be granted. Rain checks will be honored at any regularly scheduled event. Rain checks for Race Entry Fees will not be issued after the completion of round one of eliminations. Rain checks for Admission Fees will not be issued after the completion of round one of Time Trials. Rain checks for Tech Card Fees will not be issued after the completion of the vehicle’s first pass down the track.

Refunds: All vehicles are considered race ready once they enter the track. If a vehicle has broken the stage beam no refund will be issued.

Reruns: The track manager may call for a re-run if he feels that a race was not fair. Each racer must use the same lane and dial-in in this situation. If a racer cannot or will not return for a re-run they will be disqualified. Re-runs will not be granted for missed deep staging or staging your vehicle to a wrong dial-in (if scoreboards are in use).  On rare occasions, the timing system will indicate no margin of victory (essentially a tie) but will still determine the winner. In these cases, the decision of the system is FINAL and no reruns will be allowed.

Restricted Areas: The burnout area, starting line and any part of the actual track are considered restricted areas. Drivers may have crewmembers to assist in burnouts and pre-staging. Cars doing an “across the line” burnout may have one crewmember to assist with backing up the vehicle past the starting line as far as the pre-stage area. Once a car has pre-staged all crewmembers must leave the starting line area. Drivers must stage by themselves.

Return Road: All vehicles that need to shut down after making their pass are requested to try and get behind the barriers before doing so. Cooperation in this matter will help maintain a safer and more efficient race program.

Running Order: To facilitate an orderly flow to race events and time trials the following order will be in affect after 9 a.m. All time trials and eliminations will follow this order unless otherwise noted by the PA announcer.

Super Pro




Jr. Dragster

Special Event

Scoreboards: The scoreboards provide an “unofficial” display of a run. The official results are printed on your time slip. Its purpose is to provide a convenient display for racers and spectators.

Speed Limit: The speed limits pertain to all vehicles: cars, trucks, mopeds, and 4-wheelers. 25-MPH speed limits are in effect on the return road as far as the ticket station and 5-MPH speed limits are in effect in the pits, staging lanes, and all spectator or parking areas. Racers will be held accountable for any unsportsman like driving in any area that could endanger any person or equipment. Any such behavior will not be tolerated. Winterport Dragway will decide the severity of each incident and reserves the right to impose more stringent penalties.

First Offense: An oral warning will be given.

Second Offense: A written warning will be given.

Third Offense: Eviction from the track for the remainder of the race and loss of points for the day.

Fourth Offense: Suspension from the track for two weeks and loss of points accumulated for the season.

Fifth Offense: Suspension for 30 days.

Sixth Offense: Suspension for up to 1 year.

Staging: After the first vehicle has staged there is a 15-second time limit for the second vehicle to stage. Failure to stage within the time limit will result in a red light disqualification. Once you have staged you cannot back out of the beam. Doing so will cause a red light disqualification. Bye runs must stage and break the beam for the round win. When you stage your vehicle you are agreeing to the track conditions. Staging your vehicle indicates that you are ready to race.

Staging Lanes: All drivers must be ready to make their pass at the head of staging. This means being buckled up into your vehicle with the window up. Do not proceed to the burnout area until being instructed to do so by a track official.

Substitute Entries: If during time trials your main vehicle breaks you will be allowed to substitute a vehicle as long as it passes tech. Two drivers will not be allowed to operate the same vehicle in the same class during eliminations. If you have paid your entry fee and do not plan to enter an alternate vehicle, you will receive a refund of your race entry fee only.

Tech Inspection/Tech Label: All vehicles must pass tech inspection once a month, normally the first race weekend of each month. Upon completion of tech you will be given a tech sticker to post in the upper left-hand corner of the front window. Anyone caught without going through tech or not displaying the sticker will lose his or her race privileges for that day.

Tower Access: Access to the tower is limited to track officials and shareholders. Individuals with a special need or concern may enter the tower, however once their situation has been addressed, it is asked that you leave the area. This will keep the PA announcer and computer technician from being distracted.

Track Officials: The instructions of track officials must be followed at all times. If you are unsure of a rule please ask a track official for interpretation of the rule. Physical and verbal abuse will not be tolerated and such behavior could be subject to penalties and eviction from the track depending on the circumstances.

Waivers: All individuals entering the track must read and sign the Release and Waiver of Liability Form at the gate.

Warm-Ups: Racers can use the area between the two sides of the runway for warm-ups. All racers must obey the speed limit during their warm-up.

General Safety Procedures

The current IHRA and/or NHRA Rulebooks mandate specific safety requirements for race vehicles, drivers, and riders. Safety requirements that are set forth in these rulebooks will be in effect at all race events. Winterport Dragway reserves the right to disqualify any vehicle that may be a potential risk. Winterport Dragway also may impose additional safety requirements. In any case where these rules conflict or disagree, this Handbook shall take precedence, followed by whichever rulebook is more lenient for the race vehicles, drivers, or riders.

Protective Clothing: All drivers are required to wear protective suits as outlined in the current IHRA and/or NHRA rulebooks. At a minimum, drivers must wear long pants, a shirt (no tank tops allowed), socks, and shoes. All other competitors that are not required to wear protective clothing must also meet the minimum requirements. All competitors must wear a helmet that is in good repair. If a certain Snell requirement applies, to your class you must have it. Defective equipment such as torn or worn gloves, fire suits or hoods will not be tolerated.

Neutral Switch: All automatic transmission vehicles must be equipped with a working neutral switch.

Jack Stands: No work may be done under any vehicle supported only by a jack. The use of jack stands is mandatory in order to provide extra protection. When warming up a vehicle, you are required to be a licensed driver and be in the driver’s seat at all times.

Other safety Precautions/Procedures:

1.      Battery must be securely mounted.

2.      Radiator overflow mandatory.

3.      Drive shaft loop mandatory with racing slicks or 7.50 or quicker.

4.      Snell 2000 or newer helmet required.

5.      Seat belts are required for all vehicles. A 5-point harness is required for all vehicles required to have a roll bar or roll cage (SFI 16.1 within 2 years of manufacture date). Track Management may allow an extension beyond 2 years of manufacture date if the belts remain in “like new” condition. This extension  MUST be renewed at each regularly scheduled Tech Inspection, and may NOT extend beyond 5 years of manufacture date.

6.      Properly secured fire extinguisher mandatory.

7.      Roll bar (7.35 or quicker for full bodied cars with unmodified floorboards and firewalls)

8.      Window net mandatory in any full-bodied car if roll cage is required.

9.      Roll cage (6.39 or quicker for full bodied cars with unmodified floorboards and firewalls)

10.  Arm restraints for all opened bodied vehicles.

11.  Neck collar (6.39 or quicker).

12.  Motorcycles/sleds – full face shield, leather or Kevlar jacket, over the ankle shoes or boots and leather gloves.


It is the goal of the owners at Winterport Dragway to make this facility as racer friendly as we possibly can. If you have any constructive suggestions or comments we would certainly like to hear them. The same is true of any complaints. As the saying goes, “we can’t fix it if we don’t know it’s broken”. We truly want Winterport Dragway to be an enjoyable and fun place to race. All comments are welcome.

The Winterport Dragway Association and its track officials would like to wish all racers, crewmembers and other participants a safe and successful season. We would also like to thank you for your continued support in the upcoming race season.

Any questions please contact:

Track Manager: Rich Kopper 299-3528

Track President: Butch Urquhart 989-3837

Track Vice President: Jim Watson 460-6565

Track Phone: 223-3998 (race days only)