Mike Dunn, former NHRA Top Fuel and Funny Car driver, and on-screen analyst for ESPN’s NHRA television coverage, is the new president of the International Hot Rod Association.
The top IHRA post came open in January following the resignation of Scott Gardner.
IHRA parent company IRG Sports + Entertainment, a New York, NY-based portfolio company, is planning a complete reorganization of the IHRA throughout all facets of the organization with a focus on attracting a new generation of racers and race fans.
“We welcome Mike Dunn, one of the most respected figures—not just in drag racing, but in all of motorsports—to the IRGSE family of companies and specifically the IHRA as we begin to reshape the entire organization; Racing Operations, Television and Digital, Licensing, Track and Individual Membership and a newly developed Team Ownership Sponsorship Business Unit into a first-class motorsports and entertainment platform,” said Vice Chairman of the Board and CEO of IRGSE, Chris Lencheski. “Mike has been a part of the most memorable moments that this sport has ever seen, and we are excited to have his expertise as a winning driver, businessman and influential media member to help lead us forward.”
Dunn retired from full-time professional NHRA racing in 2001 and became an on-air TV personality. Dunn has 10 Funny Car wins and 12 Top Fuel wins, and is on the short list of four drivers to have won 10 or more events in both classes. (Don Prudhomme, Kenny Bernstein, and Gary Scelzi are the others.)
“I welcome this new opportunity after so many years in a race car and in front of the screen at ESPN,” Dunn said. “I think the vision that IRGSE and the IHRA is pulling together fits a younger and engaged fan base that loves action, speed and the personalities around those elements.”
For more information, you can visit IHRA’s website here. You can hear a message from the drag racing series’ new president here: