JUPITER, Fla. — Scott Gardner, the longtime owner and promoter of Cordova Dragway Park, has been named president of the International Hot Rod Association.
The announcement was made Thursday by IRG Sports & Entertainment, parent company for the IHRA and multiple motorsports facilities. He replaces Aaron Polburn, who stepped down as president and general manager of the IHRA for personal reasons. Polburn had led the organization since 2004.
“It’s a great honor and a huge responsibility to take over the position of president of the IHRA,” Gardner said. “The IHRA brand is something I have always felt was a viable drag racing organization. I am confident I can bring new ideas and renewed energy to the table while staying true to the sportsman racing at the core of the organization.”
As part of the move that will see Gardner lead the IHRA from its Norwalk, Ohio, office, IRG will acquire Cordova Dragway Park as part of its portfolio of motorsports facilities and take over the management at the end of the 2014 season.
Cordova Dragway Park, home of the World Series of Drag Racing and former Nitro Jam national events, will return as an IHRA-sanctioned member track. Gardner will pass the day-to-day management of CDP to his wife and vice president of CDP, Laura Gardner, and Chris McMahan, director of operations.
Also under Gardner’s co-ownership, Eddyville Raceway Park in Oskaloosa and Cedar Falls Raceway will also become IHRA-sanctioned member tracks. With the addition of these three member tracks, the IHRA now sanctions 112 facilities in five countries.
CDP will host the 12th event on the Nitro Jam Drag Racing Series 2014 North American Tour. The IHRA recently announced that the NJDRS 2014 North American Tour will feature a number of enhancements for the upcoming season, including the addition of a national points fund, the return of traditional drag racing and a new Fan Zone pit experience.