(Photos by James Champion) – It ain’t easy, kids. Just stand on the gas and hold onto the wheel, right? Wrong. The photo sequence below was captured by our own James Champion as he was on the wall shooting for BangShift during the 2018 NHRA Gatornationals. James was out there from the first pair of the day and he that’s how he was one of the few (perhaps the only) photographer who actually caught this drama in action.
The car you see is a big block powered 1969 Camaro stock eliminator entry. The driver is shoving a LOT of horsepower through the chassis and to the ground with little 9-inch wide slicks on the back. Big block stockers are cool but they can be temperamental.
You can see this car leaving the starting line, pulling a wheelie and driving out like you would expect. What you can’t tell until you see the photo of the car with it’s nose on the ground is that it was driving itself left and actually landed on the yellow paint in the center of the track. We’re talking the area just past the tree.
The driver continued to accelerate but the car was kind of in a traction no man’s land when the engine appeared to overwhelm the rear tires and the car started to rotate left. At that point the driver did everything he could to get the car stopped but it was too late. The momentum that the car had built up couldn’t be tamed and you’ll see the end result.
The driver was OK but as you will see, the car is not. This was a tough thing to see and another reminder that even “tame” cars like stockers have the power and ability to get crazy at the drop of a hat.