HAMPTON, Ga. - Atlanta Motor Speedway’s pit lane drag strip roared to life Friday night as competitors knocked off the rust on opening night of the 13th season of the O’Reilly Auto Parts Friday Night Drags.
Drag eliminations started with the Harding Plumbing, Heating & Cooling Domestic division with 11 competitors before being whittled down to the final round pairing of Dontavisous McKibben in his 1986 Buick Regal and David Smith behind the wheel of his 1990 Izuzu.
“I got a quick start,” said McKibben after his final round victory. “Sixty feet wins the race, and I had to get out on ’em.”
As a regular of Friday Night Drags, it’s the crowd, the excitement and variety of cars that brings out McKibben each week as he chases a division championship.
“We gonna try to take it all the way,” said McKibben looking forward to the start of the points season in three weeks.
Another pair of drivers who used opening night as a tune up as they prepare to chase a division championship faced off in the QuikTrip Pro division final. Phil Wallace in his 1967 Chevy II edged out Kevin Mayo in the last race of the night.
“I don’t know, I never seen him,” said Wallace when asked about his final round victory. “He was back there somewhere, I looked over and I didn’t see him, but I’m sure he was there somewhere.”
It was a good showing for Wallace on opening night in a car that hasn’t seen a lot of action recently the pit lane drag strip.
“The car hasn’t’ been out in over a year,” said Wallace as he looks ahead to the points season.
Other notable winners include Benley Bidot in his 2015 Chevrolet SS edge out the 2019 z06 Corvette of Steve Shafer in the South River Agency New Edge final. Vincent Varda in his 1979 Mazda Rx7 claimed victory in the Summit Racing Equipment Sportsman Division with a final round win over the 1988 Ford Mustang of Tim Hall.
Drivers will get one more opportunity to tune up their machines on the pit lane drag strip in preparation for the points season next Friday, May 17th before every run counts with the start of the points season on May 31st as drivers chase division championships.
For more information, visit AtlantaMotorSpeedway.com.
Atlanta Motor Speedway – Hampton, GA
Friday Night Drags – May 10, 2019
Domestic: Dontavious McKibben – 1986 Buick Regal
New Edge: Benley Bidot – 2015 Chevrolet Camaro SS
Super Pro: Bobby Daniel – 2011 Chevrolet Camaro
Pro: Phil Wallace – 1967 Chevy II
Street Outlaw: Daniel Harris – 1995 S10 Chevrolet
Sportsman: Vincent Varda – 1979 Mazda RX-7
Truck Advance: Chevis Morgan – 1985 Chevrolet C10
Street Performer: Tory Hornsby – 1973 Datson 240z
Super Bike: Robin Malcolm – 2003 Hayabusa
Sport Bike: Diontay Cochran – 2018 Ducanti
Motorcycle: Jamar Copes – 2007 750 GSXR
Cruiser: Robert Thomas – 2006 Harley Davidson
Quad/Tri/ATV: Andre Martin – Banshee
Street Modified: David Lawrence – 2003 Ford Mustang GT
Truck: Ed Blanford – 1968 Ford F100
Diesel Truck: Logan Lynch – 2015 Chevy Silverado
Tuner: Luis Romaz – 1985 Mazda Rx7
Sport Compact: Chris Mauldin – 2009 Nissan Infinity G37
Factory Street: Chris Moon – 2014 Ford Mustang