Adkins Makes First Full-Bodied LS Run in the 5s

By: Todd Veney | 09/19/2018 < Back to Motor Life Home

"Super Dave" Adkins carved out another piece of drag racing history during testing for the high-stakes Shakedown at the Summit event in Norwalk, Ohio, ripping off the first ever 5-second pass by a LS-powered full-bodied car. After running a 6.03 at 243 mph on his first attempt in his incredible 1970 Camaro, Adkins smashed through the five-second zone with an historic 5.975, also at 243 mph, picking up seven-hundredths from the previous run in the crucial first 60 feet (1.14-second to 1.07).

"The run was so smooth that I didn't realize how fast it really was," said Adkins, who carried the front end a couple hundred feet, set it down gently, and charged for the finish line, passing the eighth-mile mark at nearly 195 mph. "With a radial tire, there's never going to be any drama – if it doesn't make it, the car is just going to do a wheelie or spin the tires. It's not going to shake or swerve or get violent. It's like driving a street car. It almost felt slow."

Adkins then parked the Camaro for the weekend, focused his attention on his well-known '63 Impala, and proceeded to win the Radial vs. the World crown on the Summit Motorsports Park eighth-mile. "Running a quarter-mile is no harder than running the eighth-mile," said Adkins, who has plenty of experience at both distances. "In a quarter-mile, you're just on the throttle for an extra two seconds, listening to the motor make a lot of noise as you wait for the finish line to get there. It's not any harder to drive – the hard part is already behind you. The only hard part is getting the car stopped – that got a little interesting for a while there after the 5.97."

Both of Adkins' record-setting machines have Baker Engineering power and complete Holley Dominator EFI systems with the all-new V5 software upgrade. "I run the same exact setup on both cars," he said. "The Impala is legal for Radial vs. the World – it's just too heavy." It tips the scales at a hefty 2,650 pounds; the Camaro, built by Jerry Bickel Race Cars, weighs just 2,360. In Radial vs. the World action, Adkins' Impala, in just its second outing since being completely torn down and rebuilt, ran a competitive 4.16 (eighth-mile) despite Adkins having to backpedal for nearly a full second, that qualified him solidly in the middle of the pack. He then ran a best of 4.04 in eliminations to win the title going away. "The tuneup was a little safe for my first run on the new V5 software, but it was easy to tune it back up. I've run the Holley setup forever. You really can't beat it."

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