Canadian drag racing’s Todd Paton has been very busy turning some career pages this summer…

There has been some rather rapid fire developments for Todd Paton this season.   The reputed drag racing driver and tech expert has been through some major migration in 2019 which includes the formation of his own new company.

After being with California-based RacePak, in a variety of capacities for 12 years, Todd Paton has now exited that company and is on the cusp of controlling his own destiny – with a new company PDS (Performance Data Systems).

“There were a number of changes happening at RacePak and with it’s parent company (Holley) that didn’t really fit for me personally,” Todd revealed.  “There was some consolidation which would have required me to relocate away from California.”

“I had been thinking about doing this for a while,” he continued.  “I did learn over many seasons on the circuit that there was certainly some space within many teams out there between owning data acquisiton systems and understanding them.  So we have formed Performance Data Systems — to help bridge that gap.”

Todd Paton

“Specifically my specialty has been working with supercharged alcohol and nitromethane — over time that has become my “wheelhouse”,” he added.  “Because I’ve been there and done that — we are going to play that card.  P.D.S. will provide tech support and consultation in the field (for both drag racing and tractor pulling).  We did see a need in the market for exactly that and we think we’re a good fit — because we know what we are talking about.”

While P.D.S. is presently still in it’s infancy — we can confirm that it will remain based from Southern California (Rancho Santa Margarita) and it does include some other former RacePak employees and investors.

“Performance Data Systems is doing very well,” he added.  “We have picked up a lot of business since Holley closed the Racepak office in California. Customers have contacted us for replacement parts and service work for their existing Racepak systems, and a few have even placed new system orders through us.  And since we have much of the original Racepak staff working here at PDS, it only makes sense to have the people who designed and built the equipment originally handle the repair and service as well.”

Despite all of that going on — Todd’s career as a Top Fuel driver — is also migrating and on the cusp of some escalation.

During last weekend’s NHRA Mopar Express Lane Nationals (at Maple Grove Raceway in PA) Todd made his second NHRA national event driving appearance of the season.

That did raise some initial eyebrows as it came not in the familiar Paton Racing dragster but instead within the cockpit confines of Terry Haddock’s team Top Fuel dragster.  

Todd provided some clarification about that and also some goals for the not too distant future.

“Cameron (Ferre) who normally drives that car landed a new job teaching out here at Cerritos College,” Todd explained. “Because of class scheduling he couldn’t arrange for flights out and back for this race that would meet that schedule.  So I agreed to help out and drive the car at Reading.  This was just a one time thing and Cameron will likely be back behind the wheel again in St. Louis.”

Todd Paton drove the Terry Haddock Racing TF dragster at NHRA Reading last weekend.

“Our team (Paton Racing) is still working on trying to put together some deals for our car to run a few events in the Countdown this year with an eye towards a 6-10 race schedule for 2020.” he affirmed.

For more information on Performance Data Systems – visit their new website here: 

Posted by Bruce Biegler

Photos by Bruce Biegler & Phil Hutchison