Dragsters aim for more strong runs

Last year was a great time for local motorsports with growth in many areas.

This year hopes to build on that momentum, in particular the good vibes from the last meet of the year.

Weeks ago the Cayman Motorsports Association held its final Full Throttle drag racing event. Eighteen drivers (three bikes and 15 cars) tested their skills at the event.

In street class two ladies joined the ranks with Karyn Bodden in her Porsche Cayman S and Manuela Cornelssen borrowing Sammy Jackson’s GMC Denali.

Along with the lovely ladies was Jason Ebanks in his Honda Integra Type R, Tonie Brown in his Silver Chevy Camaro and Ajoni Ambersley in his Nissan Primera. The first round saw Manuela knock out Jason and Tonie beat Ajoni with Karyn moving forward with a By-Run.

For the semi-finals, the Denali proved that the Porsche had the looks but not enough power as Manuela had a time of 8.585s to Karyn’s 9.973s.

Tonie then faced Manuela in the finals thanks to his by-run and Manuela showed that the ladies can run things too with the Denali making a 8.555s pass to the Camaro’s 9.296 run.

The Pro Street class had another exciting match with competitors such as Ray Hydes in his Mitsubishi Evolution 6, Erol Babayigit in his Evolution 3, Jose Massias sporting his newly manicured Evo 7, John Godfrey in his Toyota Supra and Joseph Llewellyn in his turbo Toyota Starlet.

The class also saw another lady newcomer – Mrs. Eina Davis (wife of Dail Davis) in her twin turbo BMW 1-35i. Davis would be knocked out in the first round by Jose in his Evo but nevertheless the BMW put up a good show.

Joining Jose in the semis would be Hydes (ousting Erol) and Llewellyn (besting Godfrey). After Jose beat Joe’s Starlet, Hydes and Massias would match up in the finals with Hydes taking the win with a time of 7.695s.

Despite only three bikes competing, the showdown was far from boring. Jamie McLaughlin on his Honda CBR 1000 RR and Darren McLaughlin on his Suzuki GSXR-1000 tore down the track against one another with Jamie winning with a time of 6.472s.

Ross Hydes on his Honda CBR 1000 would meet Jamie in the finals due to a By-run with a time of 6.208s. Even though Ross seemed to be the favourite, due to red lighting, Jamie would take the win in 6.415s.

The Pro Race class featured many of the heavyweights of the sport. Names like Ian Tibbetts in his Chevy Corvette, Junior Hydes in his Ford Mustang and Tom Kirkconnell in his highly anticipated turbo Honda Civic CX-R graced the field.

Dail Davis was also in the line-up but due to a problem in his Mustang during qualifying, he opted to race his wife’s BMW which put him at a great disadvantage.

In spite of a thrilling run Dail lost in the first round to Tibbetts, who eventually made it to the finals. From there Kirkconnell’s Japanese power would be too much for Junior’s American muscle as the Civic posted a time of 7.107s.

That race would have added drama however. Hydes experienced a mechanical failure on the launch, but thanks to his knowledge and experience in racing, he did not cause any harm and arrived safely at the end of the track. Tom meanwhile set the new Front Wheel Drive drag racing record.

After the run he told the crowd, ‘I’m pleased with the run, but I can still do better.’ Tom’s mechanic from Tampa said ‘For his first time out, and racing a car with so much power, which he hasn’t done before, he’s doing really great and has a lot to be proud of.’

In the finals Kirkconnell’s 7.413 run would fall short to Tibbetts 6.553s time, which doubled as the second-fastest time for a street legal car at the Breaker’s Speedway.

After his win Tibbetts had much praise for the organizers.

‘I’m really happy with how this event went and the track really felt good tonight. I want to thank the association and the drag committee for all the effort they put in towards preparing the track as it really did pay off.’

Overall the night was another success and many of the drivers seemed to be most pleased with how the event went and how the track was prepped.

The association thanks Automotive Art for their sponsorship of this event and Robert Campbell, the Breaker’s Speedway owner, for allowing the association to use the track.

Thanks are also in order to all of the participants, volunteers and sponsors who contributed to both drag racing and Time Attack dexterity racing. The year would not have been a success without their help.

The association recently held its Annual General Meeting which ushered in a new board and the start of the 2010 season. The first race of the year will be held next month.