Ever See a 10,000-HP Burnout on Woodward Avenue?

By -

Watch a pair of Mopar-backed NHRA drivers do big, nasty burnouts with their race cars on Detroit’s Woodward Avenue.

Matt Hagan and Leah Pritchett are two of the quickest drag racers in the world thanks to their Mopar powered, Don Schumacher Racing race cars. Hagan drivers the Mopar Dodge Charger R/T in the NHRA Funny Car division while Pritchett drives the Papa John’s rail car in the Top Fuel class, with both cars sporting nitromethane-fed and supercharged Hemi engines. Each of these race cars uses a blown Hemi to create upwards of 10,000 horsepower — yes, 10,000 horsepower — to blast down the 1,000-foot track in the high-three-second range at speeds well over 300 miles per hour.

While there are other drivers who compete with Matt Hagan and Leah Pritchett, each of these DSR drivers hold records around the country in addition to holding national records for each of their respective classes, so it can be said that Matt Hagan is the quickest man in the world while Leah Pritchett is the quickest woman in the world.

Hagan's Charger burnout on Woodward at Roadkill Nights

At the recent Roadkill Nights by Dodge event in Metro Detroit, Pritchett and Hagan brought their 10,000 horsepower Hemi cars out for a quick blast down Woodward Avenue. That might sound crazy to anyone who is not familiar with the Detroit Roadkill event, but starting last year, Dodge and the folks from the internet show Roadkill have hosted an automotive festival with legal 8th-mile street racing on Woodward Ave. Of course, the road is closed and there are all sorts of safety barriers in place, but the racers get to run their vehicles wide open on the public road and at this year’s event, the record-setting DSR drivers mentioned above came out with their race cars to put on a show for the massive crowd.

At one point early in the day, it was suggested that Pritchett and Hagan might attempt to make a short pass on Woodward Ave, but as you might imagine, the “track conditions” of the street were very poor. Rather than trying to get traction, each of the pro racers did 8th mile-long burnouts on the public street and we were there to catch the action up close.

"Before I was old enough to walk, my dad was taking me to various types of racing events, from local drag racing to the Daytona 500," says Patrick Rall, a lifetime automotive expert, diehard Dodge fan, and respected auto journalist for over 10 years. "He owned a repair shop and had a variety of performance cars when I was young, but by the time I was 16, he was ready to build me my first drag car – a 1983 Dodge Mirada that ran low 12s. I spent 10 years traveling around the country, racing with my dad by my side. While we live in different areas of the country, my dad still drag races at 80 years old in the car that he built when I was 16 while I race other vehicles, including my 2017 Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat and my 1972 Dodge Demon 340.

"Although I went to college for accounting, my time in my dad’s shop growing up allowed me the knowledge to spend time working as a mechanic before getting my accounting degree, at which point I worked in the office of a dealership group. While I was working in the accounting world, I continued racing and taking pictures of cars at the track. Over time, I began showing off those pictures online and that led to my writing.

"Ten years ago, I left the accounting world to become a full-time automotive writer and I am living proof that if you love what you do, you will never “work” a day in your life," adds Rall, who has clocked in time as an auto mechanic, longtime drag racer and now automotive journalist who contributes to nearly a dozen popular auto websites dedicated to fellow enthusiasts.

"I love covering the automotive industry and everything involved with the job. I was fortunate to turn my love of the automotive world into a hobby that led to an exciting career, with my past of working as a mechanic and as an accountant in the automotive world provides me with a unique perspective of the industry.

"My experience drag racing for more than 20 years coupled with a newfound interest in road racing over the past decade allows me to push performance cars to their limit, while my role as a horse stable manager gives me vast experience towing and hauling with all of the newest trucks on the market today.

"Being based on Detroit," says Rall, "I never miss the North American International Auto Show, the Woodward Dream Cruise and Roadkill Nights, along with spending plenty of time raising hell on Detroit's Woodward Avenue with the best muscle car crowd in the world.

Rall can be contacted at [email protected]

Comments ()