Drivers, commence your engines.
After a yr off all through the coronavirus pandemic, Roadkill Nights Run by Dodge is back to kick off Woodward Desire Cruise week Aug. 13-14. Introduced by Motor Pattern, the sixth yearly occasion will function drag racing on 1/8-mile extend of Woodward community highway in Pontiac with large horsepower, street-lawful dragsters vying for a $10,000 prize in front of packed stands.
Spicing the menu this yr will be a Grudge Match. Dodge is handing out $10k every to a select group of four well known online muscle mass-car celebrities and “Fastest Cars in the Filthy South” Tv host Eric Malone to modify a Dodge Hellcat. No guidelines. Swiftest cat wins.
“Being the sixth yr, we want to make certain we did something unique,” stated Dodge chief motorhead Tim Kuniskis in an interview. “The big improve this 12 months is that we are heading to have the Hellcat Grudge Match. Who’s a lot quicker? Who’s extra legit? Is it the Tv builder’s racers or is it the on line guys? This almost certainly is as hotly debated as skilled wrestling.”
Dodge is the pro wrestling brand name of autodom — the “People magazine of the industry” as Kuniskis likes to set it — and Roadkill Evenings is the brand’s biggest phase. It is a prospect to present off its substantial-driven V-8 muscle mass cars and trucks in their natural habitat and host maybe the only street-authorized drag race in the United States.
For the 2021 design year, Dodge gives an insane, Hellcat-run, 700-moreover-horsepower SRT edition for every design in its lineup: the 807-horsepower Challenger SRT Super Stock, 797-horsepower Charger SRT Redeye sedan, and 710-horse Durango SRT Hellcat. All instructed, they boast additional ponies than any other American brand name.
“We’re all about getting entertaining doing burnouts, and just savoring our muscle mass cars and trucks and the life-style that goes together with (it),” mentioned Kuniskis. “This is not (just) a Dodge celebration, this is open to the entire business — anybody that loves fast cars and trucks. We want most people to practical experience this issue that we connect with the Brotherhood.”
Brothers and sisters will be entertained by 120 invitation-only drag racers on Woodward as nicely as by interactive activities at the adjacent M1 Concourse’s Winner Motor Speedway and motor vehicle club. Ordeals like tire-using tobacco drift rides in Challenger and Charger Hellcats, race simulators, vintage and modern day muscle mass motor vehicle exhibits, dyno testing, food stuff vans, and additional.
A single supporter most loved that will not return this year: the Mopar NHRA drag racers piloted by Leah Pruett and Matt Hagan. The dynamic duo wowed supporters in a long time past with explosive, nitro-fueled hole shots down Woodward in their Slingshot and Funny Motor vehicle Dodge dragsters.
The Roadkill circus will be streamed by MotorTrend reside with a just one-hour “Roadkill Showdown Exclusive” capturing the highlights for MotorTrend Tv. MotorTrend Tv set and on-line personalities David Freiburger and Mike Finnegan will host.
“Woodward Avenue is the sketchiest location to go drag racing thing I’ve at any time witnessed,” laughed Finnegan in an interview. The road has “a crown and a crack in both lanes and (stops) in the action every 20 minutes to wait for a train to go by. This place is magical.”
“Dirty South” host Malone will not only be at Roadkill for the initial time, but will be competing in the Grudge March.
“I’m not gonna tell all the things. But my prepare is this vehicle is gonna make more than 1,000 horsepower,” he said.
COVID restrictions in Michigan made the function difficult to pull off last calendar year, and this yr was uncertain, stated Kuniskis, because of to “a ton of hand-wringing in the corner from the lawyers and some other men and women.”
So Roadkill organizers arrived at out to their 13 million-strong audience to see if the exhibit need to go on.
“The reaction was awesome. Basically exceeded our anticipations,” stated Kuniskis. “Over 95% reported ‘Hell yeah, carry it again instantly.’ That was the reinforcement that we desired.”
In a long time earlier, the event has attracted some 50,0000 persons over two days. This 12 months, gates will open Saturday 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Drag racing starts off at 11 a.m.
Henry Payne is car critic for The Detroit News. Find him at [email protected] or Twitter @HenryEPayne.