Team Owner: Ralphy Perea Jr.
Name: Ralph Perea Jr.
DOB: 05/13/61 (49)
Resides: Riverton, UT
Driver Class: NHRA Pro – Top Fuel Dragster
Crew Chief: Don Jackson
Hospitality/Logistics: Margaret Perea-Watson
Car Chief: Ralph “Phillip” Perea III
Ralph Perea Jr. has been in the racing business for 30 years in one form or another. Directly out of high school he started working in a steel fabrication shop as an apprentice fabricator; using that time to hone his skills in welding and layout of steel structures. In 1983 he went to work for Hoj Engineering and Sales as a Fabricator/Welder.
During this time Ralph and his brother Rick purchased their first race car. Ralph with his welding and design skills took the car and completed needed updates to the roll cage, suspension, and even the cars first race ready paint job. Continuing to race this car for several years at local drag racing events, they usually finished well in the yearly points standings. Ralph’s skills updating the car did not go unnoticed. In a short amount of time he found himself working on and building cars for friends and now to be recognized as customers.
In the fall of 1992, Ralph accepted the position of Race Operations Director for Drag Racing at what then was Bonneville Raceways under the ownership of Tom Carn. He stayed with Bonneville until its sale to Spencer Young and the Young Automotive Group. The new management of Rocky Mountain Raceways felt Ralph’s knowledge and skills were a valuable asset and gave him the position of Tech Director. He was overseeing all aspects of race car inspections prior to vehicles being allowed to compete at race events. After 2 years Ralph was then added to the management team as the Race Di-rector working with then assigned Drag Strip Manager, Ron Craft. Ralph continues his involvement as Race Director at Rocky Mountain Raceways just completing his 12th year on the staff.
In 1996, Ralph had the ongoing desire to expand his knowledge and talents related to drag race cars and drag racing in general. He did two things that year. First he went full time constructing race cars working with Chip Nielsen owner of Chip Nielsen Enterprises. Secondly he was hired as a Certification Team Member by the NHRA, traveling to races and completing inspections at National and Division Events.
With all this at hand Ralph found very little time for his own racing career, but did find the time to build not one but two Junior Dragsters. Each piloted by one of his children Maggie, and Phill (Ralph III) the team raced for several years. The team went on to win multiple events, including five 2nd Place finishes in Season Championships. Four of those were with daughter Maggie behind the wheel, the other by son, Phill. As well as one 1st Place overall Season Championship with Phill driving.
Maggie being the older of the two at the age of 16 graduated into the families Super Comp 9 Second dragster. Becoming the youngest female in Utah (at that time) to be a NHRA Licensed dragster driver. At this time Ralph and the children made the decision to put the racing on hiatus. This letting Ralph make the move to start his own business.
Ralph with the help of Ralph III (Phill), opened A-Z Motorsports in the fall of 1999. Phill worked side by side with his father after school and on weekends learning the in’s and outs of race car construction. Having a desire for a continued education Phill decided to join the U.S. Air Force and use that as an avenue to fund his own education. Ralph continued on with A-Z until the spring of 2005 when he was presented an offer to sell the business. Was a difficult decision to make but he decided sell. New opportunities seemed to be presenting themselves for Ralph in other aspects of Drag Racing.
Also in 2005 Ralph was offered a full time position working for Lucas Oil Products as a crew member for their A-Fuel Dragster that competes on the National NHRA Tour. With his love for Nitro Methane and the HEMI, Ralph jumped at the chance. The team won First Place in Division 2 for 2006 season. While working with the Lucas Oil Dragster, Ralph was made aware that under the new management A-Z Motorsports was no longer able to remain in business. Knowing that there was still a need for a full time performance fabrication shop he bought back the assets of A-Z Motorsports and opened RP Squared Performance Fabrication. On the off weekends from racing with the team he started building and repairing race cars again. Today RP Squared Performance Fabrication is enjoying greater success than those before it.
In the spring of 2006 Ralph made the decision that it was time to start racing again. It was also the time to showcase the newly designed RP Squared Super Class Series Dragster. The car was completed in July 2006 just in time for Phill to return home on leave from Italy and test drive the car. With the first several outings of the car being a success in design and handling.
After a couple of years off, the team will attempt to secure funding for another run during the 2011 season.