It Was Only A Matter Of Time before a major LS-themed event hit the radar in the world of drag racing. With the breadth of racers out there that have the newest Bow Tie powerplants in their cars, the NMCA and GM Performance Parts saw an opportunity to have an LS-themed event, the inaugural LSX Shootout held at Memphis Motorsports Park last October. Held during the NMCA World Finals, GM Performance Parts and other major sponsors came through with a slew of prizes for the competition, including a purse valued at over $60,000. "The Professor," Warren Johnson, was on hand as Grand Marshal of the event. Our sister magazine, GM High-Tech Performance, was also present, as it was the presenting publication.
Three distinct drag classes were the highlight of the racing portion of the event. Drag Radial, a heads-up category that showcased the best Lsbased vehicles (most of which were running 7s and 8s), and awarded an LS7 crate motor along with $3,000 to win. There was the Naturally Aspirated class, which was heads-up and allowed slicks. It paid $2,000 to win, plus an LS7 mill. There was an Index class that allowed just about any LS-powered machine to bracket race, with the prize being an LSX Bow Tie block and $1,000. Finally, the LS-powered entrants also received free entry into the NMCA True Street competition, which witnessed over 50 LSX entrants take it to the streets of "River City." This category was run alongside the NMCA class-the road tour train was almost 100 cars long-but the LSX participants had their own awards.
Competition was aggressive, to say the least. In the Drag Radial class, Tom Kempf, who thrashed just to get his car in the competition after suffering a testing accident a few days previous, topped Paul Major in a thrilling final-Kempf claimed the narrow victory in his turbocharged '00 Camaro, pipping Major with a 7.871 to Major's 7.892.
The NA class also saw some close action, with Kevin Patterson in his '95 Firebird taking out Judson Massngil in a '99 Camaro. Patterson ran down a 9.560 at 140.43 mph to Massingil's 9.920 at 112.80 mph. That's some serious all-motor performance. On the Index class side of things, Leopold Mcocki pedaled his '98 Trans Am to a 11.789 on an 11.50 dialin, besting Derek Carter in another '98 T/A.
The LSX True Street competition saw three Pontiacs take home hardware, with Dave Childress, in a '98 Firebird, claiming top honors. Childress' threerun average of 10.147 was good enough for him to win.