Wild Bunch Wars at South Coast Raceway – Gallery

Last weekend, Portland’s South Coast Raceway held one of its biggest drag racing meets of the year, Wild Bunch Wars

Photographers: Brett Keating

AS THE name suggests, it was all about the Wild Bunch Supercharged Outlaw cars belting down the little eighth-mile track, but they were joined by six other classes of cars and bikes, including Super Sedan, Super Street, Modified Eliminator, Modified Bike, Junior Dragster and a Radial class for street cars. It was a huge day, with around 70 cars entered and over 1000 spectators!

McDonald Bros Racing MonaroStreet Machine Drag Challenge veteran Mark Drew had a crack in the Radial class in his crusty Torana, but unfortunately blew a head gasket in Friday night testing. Chris McDonald from McDonald Brothers Racing was also keen to run some numbers in his twin-turbo small-block Chev-powered Monaro, and managed a PB of 5.4@137mph over the eighth-mile, with Adam Rogash from MPW Performance on the tune up.

Wild BunchWhile many competitors were there to just run numbers and get their cars dialled in, there was a competition aspect to the event. There were three qualifying rounds of racing before a Chicago shootout in the afternoon. Each entrant took part in three races and the cars with the most wins went into the final.

Unfortunately racing had to finish early due to an incident involving Jason from Dominator Converters and his Ford Capri. The Capri hit the wall and Dean Cleary’s Pro Stock GTO after the throttle stuck wide open during the burnout. Jason wasn’t able to reach his kill switch due to his arm restraints being too tight so the car didn’t come to a stop until it ploughed through the wall back in the staging lanes and hit a tree.

Fortunately no one was harmed and Jason walked away from the incident, but the Capri was a write off. Dean Cleary’s GTO suffered only cosmetic damage. The damage to the startline was too significant to finish the day.

Holden HG MonaroGreg Damiani’s beautiful HG Monaro Super Sedan runs a 572ci big-block Chev, and ran a PB of 5.051 @133mph down the eighth-mile for the weekend. Interestingly, this full-chassis racer is left-hand drive.

Holden HK MonaroWild Bunch Supercharged Outlaw bracket racer Andrew Chessells piloted this insane blown and injected 526ci Keith Black-powered HK Monaro. There’s not much factory Holden left in this one, and when Andrew hits the loud pedal, boy do you feel it in the chest!

Chevy S10An old Chevy pick-up might not be everyone’s first choice of race car, but Benny Phillips’s monster 565ci BBC-powered Super Sedan Chevy S10 is one quick jigger. Benny ran [email protected] down the eighth-mile track during the Friday night testing.

Holden HQ MonaroGreg Angus’s Wild Bunch Holden HQ Monaro is another old-school racer. Powered by a blown and injected 376ci small-block Chev, it ran a blisteringly quick time of [email protected].

Studebaker ChampionEntrant Michael Trahar’s Studebaker Champion runs a blown and injected 545ci big-block Chev. Michael ran a [email protected] on his first qualifying round.

1934 FordJason Keily’s’34 Ford was a real crowd favourite. Running a 540ci big-block Chev, it was bloody quick too! On his third qualifying run, Jason went [email protected].

Holden ToranaUnlike some of the other Wild Bunch cars, Ben Stebbeings’s LJ Torana retains most of the original Holden sheet metal. Poking out of the bonnet is a blown and injected 350 Chev, and during qualifying the tough Torry ran [email protected].

Holden VS CommodoreWild Bunch racer John Mol runs this VS Commodore with a blown TFX 511ci motor. The former family bus ran 4.82sec at a huge 149.01mph during qualifying.

Holden HQ MonaroIn the Super Sedan class, Alex Blias brought along his killer 535ci nitrous-assisted HQ Monaro street car. Alex ran [email protected].

Ford CustomlineEntrant Mark Hunt raced his ’56 Ford Customline in the Wild Bunch Supercharged Outlaw bracket. Running a badarse blown 374ci motor, Mark ran [email protected].

Wild BunchSouth Coast Raceway’s next big event is Powernats on 27 April, featuring a big burnout comp with V6, V8 and Open classes, plus a powerskid comp down the drag strip. There are a heap of big blown burnout cars entered and it’s shaping up to be a cool event with $5,000 up for grabs for the burnout winner!