Guest Instructor - Tommy Phillips
At forty years of age, Tommy Phillips has accumulated nearly 30 years of experience behind the wheel of sportsman racing machines and within the performance motorsports industry. Phillips, who has always made his home in the North Texas area, first took the wheel in 1983, at the tender age of 13. After nearly a decade of honing his skills at local area tracks and earning a Business Degree from the University of North Texas, Phillips took his racing talents to the national stage.
He raced for a living from 1993 to 1999, experiencing a great deal of success in a variety of categories. He has placed in NHRA’s national top ten points standings on a whopping 17 occasions, earning national recognition in Super Comp, Super Gas, and Stock Eliminator. His ledger includes an impressive, albeit frustrating five 2nd place finishes in NHRA national standings (Phillips is yet to win a national championship). He has accumulated 21 national event victories in the same three categories, and also has 24 Lucas Oil Division Series wins (as a side note, his LODRS final round record is an impeccable 24-6). Phillips is a six-time NHRA Division 4 Champion, earning the title on three occasions in Super Comp, and once each in Super Gas, Super Street, and Stock Eliminator.
Tommy Phillips on the NHRA stage with Lynn Nickerson following his 2010 National Event victory at the Texas Motorplex.
Outside of NHRA competition, Phillips also has an impressive resume as a bracket competitor despite limited appearances in big dollar events. He took winner and runner-up honors at a $10,000-to-win event at Thunder Valley Raceway Park in the mid-1990’s, and earned runner-up honors in both the Super Pro and Pro Class at the NHRA Division 4 E.T. Finals in 1997. That decade he also took home five victories from Texas Raceway’s annual Labor Day Landslide event during a three year stretch (each of those victories was worth $5,000 or $10,000). More recently, Phillips’ has made two appearances at the annual Million Dollar Race and went deep into the money split each time. In 2006, Phillips advanced to the quarterfinal round of competition in the main event, and then did himself one better with a semi-final loss in 2007 (in both rounds, Phillips was a heart breaking -.001 red).
Phillips took a couple years away from racing in 2000 and 2001, shortly after marrying his wife Carrie. During that time, he enjoyed a successful stint in real estate, an area that he still dabbles with occasionally. His return to competition in 2002 eventually led to the formation of TNT Supercars, a company that specializes in sportsman dragster chassis. Phillips aligned with longtime supporter Smiley Racing Products, bringing TNT Supercars under the Smiley’s umbrella. Currently, he is the drag race manager at Smiley’s, manages the TNT Supercars shop, and handles all of the drag race related purchasing for Smiley’s. Tommy and Carrie’s daughter Autumn, now 19, is currently in her first year of nursing school.
Tommy along with TNT customer and fellow TIBR Guest Instructor Shawn Langdon. The duo is undoubtably checking out the latest updates on ThisIsBracketRacing.com!
Tommy’s current operation features a TNT Supercars Super Comp Dragster and a Don Davis Super Gas Corvette Roadster. He is sponsored by Tigerflow Packaged Pumping Systems, K&N Filters, CBS Arc Safe, Sunset Racecraft and Smiley’s Racing Products. This season, Phillips won Super Gas at both the NHRA O’Reilly Auto Parts Spring Nationals (Houston) and the O’Reilly Auto Parts Super Start Batteries NHRA Fall Nationals (Dallas). He’s also added an LODRS victory in Super Gas and a runner-up in Super Comp. Phillips currently holds the fourth position in the NHRA Super Gas Lucas Oil Series national points standings and is in the middle of a close fight for his seventh Division 4 title in the same category.
Phillips just completed a new TNT Supercars dragster built specifically for bracket competition, as he looks to return to the big dollar bracket scene for select events in 2011. He also recently purchased a 1997 Camaro that he’ll run in SS/IA next season.
ThisIsBracketRacing.com is delighted to add Tommy Phillips to our all-star roster of instructors, and like each of our members we look forward to receiving a portion of his sportsman racing knowledge.