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DRO: As far as you know, though, IHRA will continue to do business day to day just like it has been. There won't be any immediate drastic changes in the way IHRA is run?

Bader: Absolutely.

DRO: Since we've established that, letís talk about a few things near and dear to your racers hearts: Money and specifically the 2001 purse.

Bader: O.K.

DRO: Three years ago you told most of the racers that you would increase the purses after the third year. I haven't seen a new purse schedule yet. Is there going to be an across the board raise this season?

Bader: Well, we are going to have a pay raise for the Top Fuel class. We are adding $2500 at every level. That means first round loser in Top Fuel will be getting $7500 instead of $5000.

DRO: That's good, Bill, but I've received many calls and had lots of conversations with Pro Mod, Pro Stock, and Alky Funny Car racers and I can tell you they're expecting a raise. What's in store for them?

Bader: Unfortunately, not a raise. The fact is that out track owner partners and we, IHRA, simply can't afford to raise the purses. The money just isn't there. We couldn't give them any more money, but we have done one thing that I hope they will like. We are addressing some of the racersí safety concerns. Starting with the Rockingham race IHRA has hired a trauma surgeon to be in attendance at each race.

The IHRA office was crackling with activity; phones ringing, doors opening and closing, people talking in the background and trying to get Billís attention. There were more people waiting with more questions. The ever-gracious Bader asked if there was anything else we wanted to ask. There was, but there was no time in his schedule for much more. He offered to spend more time and answer any other questions we might have at the season opener at Rockingham.

So, here's the DRO deal. Got a question you'd like us to ask Bill? Email it to jeffb@racingnetsource.com and we will pick a few and ask Mr. Bader. We will have that InnerView in our April issue.

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