Canadian racer Barry Daniluk won the Top Sportsman Ultimate Shootout Saturday night during the PDRA Dragstock event at Rockingham Dragway, while Jody Stroud of nearby Chesterfield, SC, won a similar shootout for Top Dragster competitors. The IGetFixed.com Ultimate Shootouts pit the top four qualifiers in each class against one another in a heads-up format before eliminations begin for each PDRA national event.
Boyd Beyer and his supercharged 2004 Mustang qualified number one in Top Sportsman with a 4.065-second pass at 180.91 mph, but fell victim to number-four starter Daniluk in the opening round of the shootout. Beyer got away first, but soon lost traction and coasted to an 8-second finish while Daniluk ran 4.105 at 175.16 to advance in his naturally-aspirated ’68 Camaro.
On the opposite side of the ladder, Suwanee, GA’s Ronnie Davis posted a 4.061 at 184.19 in his nitrous-boosted ’63 Corvette to handily defeat the 4.418 at 166.46 run by Don Klooster in a similar ride out of Kalamazoo, MI.
Daniluk got the jump in the Top Sportsman shootout final, then won with a 4.119 effort at 175.23 mph while Davis struggled to a 4.303 at just 145.52 as his engine appeared to be eating itself up as it powered down the Rockingham eighth mile.
“To win anything against the level of competitors and cars we have in the PDRA is a big deal,” said Daniluk, a machine-shop owner from Red Deer, AB, in Western Canada. “And to say we did it with no nitrous, no power adder on our motor — the only one out here, by the way — makes it that much more satisfying. It gives us good momentum going into eliminations tomorrow, too.”
Stroud, the second-place starter in Top Dragster, also stressed the competitive nature of his class after running 3.784 at 195.14 mph to beat a red-lighting Eddie Careccia in round one of the shootout, then went 3.790 at 194.97 to edge out a 3.825 at 194.18 effort by top qualifier Richard Edwards.
“It carried the front wheels pretty high about three-hundred feet down the track, but it felt good and seemed to be going straight so I just stayed in it,” Stroud said of his shootout final run in the left lane. “We have some fast cars out here, so if you can just keep going that’s what you better do.” (Roger Richards photos)