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The Grand Champion segment is the most complete test of the mettle of man and machine at LS Fest. These competitors compete on the skidpad, road course, and drag strip to do battle for the title of LS Fest Grand Champion. We suggested adding the Off-Road Challenge course to see who has built a truly complete machine, but we couldn't get enough buy-in.
LS Fest East is perhaps the ultimate car enthusiast event, mainly because there’s something for everyone. This includes all forms of racing, a car show, a manufacturer’s midway, and more. Of course, everyone wants a crack at the Beech Bend Raceway Park quarter-mile—even the competitors in the Grand Champion class, which encompasses Autocross, S3 Challenge and drag racing.
While it may be out of their element, it is still a blast for the GC racers and the fans to see the high-powered machines that normally carve corners hit the drag strip. The variety of vehicles is incredible, with three classes (Late Model, Vintage, and Truck) going full send.
If you’re unfamiliar, the Grand Champion (GC) Drag Class is one of the specific segments that make up the Grand Champion class offered at Holley LS Fest East. The GC Drag Class is run in time-trial format for elapsed time only, there are no eliminations. Racers make three drag runs or they go for one hour (whichever comes first) and GC Competitors must run the same tires as they do for the entire event.
The runs are important because they count towards the Grand Champion scoring. And pure power doesn’t always equal the quickest times, as launch finesse goes a long way with these cars and trucks that are built for handling and braking, more than hard launches.
Grand Champion Class Breakdown
The 2023 LS Fest East Grand Champion is returning champ, Justin Peachy in his 2007 Chevrolet Corvette. Justin was the first driver to win the Grand Trio, winning Grand Champion in 2022 at LS Fest East, MoParty and Ford Fest. An epic accomplishment.
The 2023 LS Fest East has concluded with another epic year and a sold-out participant turnout. The Grand Champion is the driver who earned the most total points in autocross, drag racing, and 3S challenge. A test of a driver’s skill, vehicle performance, consistency, and endurance.
For LS Fest East, this includes two autocross tracks, a Beech Bend's 3/8 mile oval track, and another at the famous NCM Motorsports Park skid pad.
Competitors must use a single set of tires for the entire event; no tire changes between events are allowed, and cars must be driven to NCMP.
Grand Champ Awards
HP Tuners and Bangshift.com - Dyno Challenge
Non-Power Adder Class:
3rd - 455 hp - Jesse Lockhart
2nd - 456 hp - Micheal Collins
1st - 615 hp - Scot McMillan
Power Adder Class:
3rd - 924 hp - Patrick Williams
2nd - TBA
1st - 948 hp - Barry Cook
QA1 and Lateral G - Autocross Shootout Winner:
QA1 “Fast Times” Awards:
3: Christopher Jensen (1:13.6)
2: Ryan Matthews (1:13.0)
3: Justin Peachy (1:10.88)
Justin Peachy wins a jacket, Optima gift card, and $250 cash.
Elgin Pro Stock and Stacey David’s Gearz - 3S Challenge
3: Danny Popp
2: Russ Coleman
1: Cody Puckett
Scoggin Dickey Parts Center - Drag Race
3: Nicholas Barrett (10.263)
2: Craig Staley (10.237)
3: Randy Farles (10.202)
Optima Spirit of the Event Award
Truck Grand Champion:
The Truck Grand Champion is Joe Gregory in his ’85 Chevrolet pickup. What’s his advice for winning? “Don’t give up,” said Joe. “Friday I was behind, and Saturday I stayed with it and I jumped several spots.”
Late Model Grand Champion
Justin Peachy, the second LS Fest Grand Champion. “You are looking at a legit driver, if you put him in any car and he kicks some tail,” said Jimi Day with FM3 Marketing, who operates the Grand Champion competition events.
Vintage Grand Champion
Cody Puckett, in his ’70 Camaro takes home the win in the ultra-competitive Vintage Class. It’s not all about autocross. “It was really close, at NCM [autocross course], I didn’t do well there, but I had a decent drag time and won the 3S Challenge,” said Cody.