VMP Proves To Be Rhude Awakening for the Competition
The Fall gathering of the Modern Street HEMI® Shootout at Virginia Motorsports Park, in typical fashion, was hot and wild and quickly became a favorite of Gary Rhudy, the latest driver to be crowned the Stage 6 King of the Hill. Rhudy piloted a 2009 Challenger to wins in both the Demon Performance Super Pro category and followed it up with three round wins in the King of the Hill Shootout. To get the Super Pro win, Rhudy in his Reed Performance Chally, had provided the crowd with the fastest pass of the event in the first round of eliminations with an 8.85 at 158mph, which also nabbed him the Blue Collar Performance best ET award as well. Rhudy is already warning the other competitors that the Challenger nicknamed, “The Wolf,” still has more left in it and will be vying for another class win come November at Atco. Not far behind in the Super Pro category, a congratulations is in order for series supporter and racer Jimmy Koutsoubis from True Street Performance. He cracked off his first ever 8 second pass after knocking on the door numerous times, but would succumb to issues that ended his day.
The ThiTek Pro Class was competitive as always, with reigning class champion and Virginia resident Marcus Hughes keeping the title in his home state, winning a tight final against David Henderson from Blythewood, South Carolina. Hughes had been fighting some issues earlier in the day, but put it all together in the finals when it mattered most. Henderson ran a number of good clean passes to get to the final, but in typical Hughes’ fashion, he brought his “A” game when it mattered most. Marcus jumped out to a clean lead off the tree and held it to the end of the 1320 with his best pass of the day for a 9.70 and the class victory.
The Speedlogix Modified Class had a stacked field of ten cars, all running within a few tenths of each other. John Burleson of Charlotte, North Carolina, took full advantage of his opportunities and capitalized on three red lights by his opponents in eliminations to claim the crown. Burleson was running close to the 10.5 number all day and surely had his competition on edge as he took the final two rounds by red light disqualifications against class veterans Justin Skudder in the semi’s and Wendy Robertson in the class final. Look for some high octane racing from this class come November 7th at Atco.
Fourteen cars entered and the 05 Chrysler 300C of Canadian Phil Mitchell was the last one standing in the LegMaker Intakes Super Stock Class. Mitchell took the finals in a double breakout over East Meadow, New York resident Michael Galiano. The Canadian pushed his competition over the edge, making Galiano push through the line for an 11.47 run that tripped the beams just .03 seconds before Mitchell, handing in the triumph by the slimmest of margins. Also within the class, Jeremy Webb of Moresville, Pennsylvania claimed the Rich Wesley Smallest Margin of Victory award with a .0011 margin of victory in his 09 Jeep SRT8.
A large turnout of 22 cars entered the always popular Hemituner Performance Street Class. Reigning champion and perennial favorite John Govenettio was taken out in the third round and that opened the door for MSHS veterans Jon Dalton of Painesville, Ohio and Stell Savarino of White Plains, New York. Savarino had just shown his driving skill in the semi-finals by launching his Magnum to the year’s best reaction time of .010 and ensuring him the High Horse Performance best reaction time award in addition to the $500 bonus for the first .010 pass of the season. His right foot would prove to fail him in the finals though, as Dalton caught Savarino napping and gained a sizable advantage off the tree that he would hold all the way out the back door. Dalton’s hole shot proved to be the major deciding factor in taking his first street class victory of the year in his 2014 Charger R/T. An even bigger field is expected at Atco and the competition should be fierce.
The East Coast Moparts Pentastar Bracket Class brought out 41 entries to vie for the top bracket racer in the Mopar ranks. After six round wins, Tim Kootz in his 2008 Jeep SRT8 would come out on top after a red light foul from young Dylan Dalton. While Dalton came up short in the finals, he became the third generation of the Dalton clan to make it to a Modern Street HEMI® Shootout event final. A breakout run in the semi-finals by Guy Dalton was the only thing separating the bracket class from being an all Dalton final, but Kootz’s solid run locked in his spot in the finals and his eventual path to the class victory.
The fan favorite spectacle of the Speedlogix Hellcat Shootout became an all Tout affair for the finals, pitting Linda’s Charger against husband John’s Challenger for superiority. The Doylestown, Pennsylvania household finale was claimed by John in his Chally and gave him bragging rights with a blazing 10.43 @ 131mph trip down the strip.
Jay Orrand from Speedy’s Garage has sponsored a bonus for any 6 speed manual car that wins an MSHS class over the past few seasons and for this event there was a 6 Speed Shootout in his honor. 4 cars lined up for this heads up run off with Canadian Denis Roy aka “Toofart” from the Modern Mopar Forum taking home the win and Phillip Fielder coming in a respectable 2nd place. These guys love to show off their skills and proudly poke fun at the automatic racers notoriously naming them “burrito eaters”. Very impressive showcase which will surely make another appearance in future MSHS events.
True Street Performance headlined and BilletTechnology doubled the payout paving the way for this great event and with it now in the books we can focus on the season finale at ATCO on November 7th. Things are heating up nicely in the points standings, lets see who comes away with the crown in each class and ultimately becomes the King of Kings!
-Written by MSHS Racer Craig Couture. Craig will be featuring additional reviews of the events with Modern Mopar Magazine. Be sure to order your copy now!