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Drag racing is a competition in which vehicles compete to be the first to cross a set finish line, usually from a standing start, and in a straight line. First gaining popularity in the USA after World War II (1945), the sport steadily grew in popularity and spread across the globe. By 2009, there were hundreds of drag strips in operation, mainly in developed countries.

Most drag races begin with a standing (stationary) start and are just 1/4 mile long (1320 feet). Races last between 3.9 and 17 seconds, with finishing speeds ranging from 80 to over 330 miles per hour (530 km/h), depending upon the type of vehicle being used.
As of July 2009, the world record for a 1/4 mile standing start pass is 4.428 seconds set by Tony Schumacher. Schumacher also broke the world speed record in 2005 at Brainerd, MN.