Ontario Outlaws — United
In drag racing’s fast street car genre — the Outlaw 10.5 (tire) category is certainly well worth fan attention and some Ontario-based drag racers are helping to take that class to a higher level within Canada…..
Outlaw 10.5 racing is a bit outside of drag racing’s mainstream. It is a highly creative class where innovation and high technology is used by participating team’s to balance out rather ridiculous horsepower capability all using a restrictive common denominator (10.5 inch tire width) in a winner take all scenario. It is a class where the word “management” is truly key.
Led by Toronto-area racers Nick Agostino (Markham) and Tony Basso (a.k.a. Presto) from Oakville, this racing duo are at the Canadian forefront for this type of drag racing. During early 2013, the duo helped to form a new Canadian drag racing circuit – the Outlaw 10.5 Association — and the response to that move has been impressive on all fronts.
“Our new Outlaw 10.5 Association started this year and it evolved from the OSCA (Ontario Street Car Association),” stated Nick Agostino, who is also the owner and operator of highly reputed Agostino Racing Engines. “In the OSCA the Super Street class fell apart a bit over the past 3-4 years mostly because of drifting rules. Tony and I sat down and realized we had to do something. Guys like us were then running our cars in some EZ Street trim, but in actuality these cars are not really built to run that. So we set up a new organization – put together some sponsors and scheduled four races.”
Nick was then actually taken back by the reaction from both fans and participants.
“We had 16 local racers sign up right away and in fact over the season had 23 different teams (both Canadian and American) that made appearances at our events,” he continued. “We did race at Cayuga 3X and once at Grand Bend – some of our events were in conjunction with the OSCA. I was surprised by how fast it caught on — not just the racers — but from the public’s perspective too.”
Nick and Tony feel that a key to their initial success was the implementation of more recognized rules. The guidelines they used are widely referred to as “Cecil County rules” because of their origin from Cecil County Raceway in Maryland. That track is home base to the biggest Outlaw 10.5 event in North America each season — the Yellow Bullet Nationals and over time their rules have become more or less a standard for any serious Outlaw 10.5 class racer.
“We use Cecil County rules which represent about 80% of the 10.5 racers out there,” Nick continued. “We took the rules that we know worked. That was a problem before within Canada. It’s 1/8th mile racing with certain weight and certain safety. The rules do vary a little bit when 1/4 mile racing is involved. But the bottom line is that now we all move forward with consistency.”
Nick added that after the Outlaw 10.5 Association was established for Canada, the group received some great reciprocity from racers in the USA and in particular around the U.S. East coast area. There are a number of Canadian Outlaw 10.5 racers that venture into the USA each summer to race and that is
being now recognized by American racers and race track owners that are encouraging the reverse into Canada.
“A lot of American racers that have been showing up to support our races,” Nick added. “In fact the owners at Cecil County have told all their local 10.5 racers that if they come up to Canada to race — their entry fee at Cecil is waived. How cool is that?”
That holds well for the upcoming 2014 racing season in Canada. While that schedule is yet to be announced be assured the objective is to expand both the number of events and also the Canadian drag strips involved.
There is no doubt that Nick & Tony are on to something good here for Canadian drag racing. Much like Bruce Mehlenbacher has done with his various series’ – the PMRA, Quick 32 & PBSS — Nick and Tony have also recognized another Canadian strength within drag racing and are doing their part to exploit and grow it.
For more information on the group visit on-line: www.Outlaw10Five.com
Photos & Posting by: Bruce Biegler