Bailey Wins Unlimited Class at Drag Week With Holley EFI-equipped '66 Vette
Driving a '69 Camaro, Tom Bailey, one of the biggest stars in Drag Week history, won Unlimited by running flawlessly at four of five tracks – Atlanta Dragway, Darlington Dragway, zMax Dragway (Charlotte), Bristol Dragway, and back at Atlanta. He averaged a 6.85 at 202.04 mph; throw out a problem-plagued 7.46 at only 145 mph at Bristol, and the numbers are even more staggering: an average of 6.71 at 214.62 mph. David Schroeder, who won the event last year with his amazing Holley EFI-equipped '66 Vette, finished a strong second and just missed being the only other driver with an average in the sixes. He averaged 7.017 with a best of 6.79 at 210.50 mph at zMax, where most teams seemed to run the best.
For Bailey, who won Drag Week 2013 in this Camaro and Drag Week 2015 in another of his amazing machines, it was the first time he put the Camaro through its paces on the full quarter-mile in four years. "It's been in the garage," he said. "It's my daily driver." Power comes from a 3500-horse Steve Morris Engines 615-cubic-inch big block with Holley Dominator EFI. "I've run other stuff, and this is the easiest system to use – that's why I went to it in 2012. It's smooth, it always works, and there's just never any glitches or anything. With the updates that came out, you can always update it and it gets more and more robust all the time."
Bailey opened with a 6.73 at 210.83 mph at Atlanta and followed with an even better 6.67 at 219.83 mph at Darlington. His best run of the week, a 6.65 at 219.61 mph, followed by the shutoff 7.46 at just 145.30 mph at Bristol. "The air shifter didn't work," he explained. "We'd just driven all night, and I didn't know it at the time what the problem was. We already had a big enough lead, so I clicked it off to make I didn't hurt anything in case there was something bigger wrong with the car." There wasn't, and he locked up another Drag Week title in Atlanta with a strong 6.76 at 214.62 mph.