Jason Harris scores Big Dog win; identical elapse times in thrilling final (1 Viewer)

Jason Harris scores Big Dog win; identical elapsed times in thrilling final
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<br><font color="Navy">"This just goes to show you what Big Dog is about. A man can take an affordable car and smaller budget and find success." - Jason Harris</font>

<P> (8-8-08)Julian, NC - For the second time in his 5 month old Big Dog career, Jason Harris hoisted the famous K-9 shaped trophy in Piedmont Dragway's winner circle last evening. Harris, son of Big Dog founder, Bob Harris, used an even mixture of hole shot magic, a solid car and perhaps a wink and a smile from Lady Luck to put all the pieces together and score his second Big Dog win of 2008. Harris held off the incredibly tough Ronnie Gardner in this unique final round where one elapsed time fit all.

Qualifying 6th in the 8-car main event, Jason Harris used a Rick Jones-fabricated GTO and horse power from an inspiring Billy Albert-assembled 632 - the smallest motor in attendance yesterday evening. The combo clocked 4.26 @ 171mph in the tightest Big Dog field of the year.

Sitting on the bump was "Diamond" Jack Gaddy, returning to the seat of his Cavalier and sliding in the show with a 4.27 @ 171mph. Up one notch to the #7 spot was Bobby Leonard, who made his Big Dog debut yesterday behind the wheel of his stunning, in-house constructed 57 Chevy from L&H Race Cars. Moving up the qualifying ladder to 5th was Gilmer Hinshaw's Kresto Cobalt. Season-opening winner, Ronnie Gardner, slid into the #4 spot, with David Campbell holding down 3rd. Ford fans cheered loud for Brian Williams, as his Mustang made a strong showing with a #2 qualifying effort. July's Big Dog PowerJam winner, Travis Harvey, was the quickest man through 2 rounds of qualifying, posting a 4.23 @ 175mph.

Picking up the action from round one, eventual winner Jason Harris needed a hole-shot in the worst way to get past David Campbell. Harris caught the bulb he needed, his 4.27 holding off Campbell's quicker 4.23 elapsed time. This advanced Harris to a semi-final show down with Brian Williams. Harris was second out of the gate on this one, but the GTO had an aggressive tune-up, as his 4.22 went low e.t. for the round. Brian Williams' 4.23 made this anybody's race at the 660 mark.

Ronnie Gardner, who got past Gilmer Hinshaw and Travis Harvey in the earlier rounds, staged along side Jason Harris for one last blast down the 1/8 mile. Incredibly, both drivers stopped the clocks at 4.257 seconds. Gardner's mph was greater, but Harris took an enormous lead out of the gate and never looked back.

As traditional with the Big Dog series, both drivers immediately turned around in the shut down area, and drove their race cars right back down the 1/8 mile strip to the starting line, where they greeted fans and chatted with Alvin Dildine over the public address.

Back in the pits, Jason Harris, the 28 year old resident of Pittsboro, NC, voiced praise for engine builder Billy Albert and the amazingly effective 632 c.i. powerplant he produced in his Wytheville, VA engine shop. A relatively small race team, the Harris family make up the bulk of the group. "Racing is hard work, and I've got a full time job, but it just goes to show you what Big Dog is about. You can take an affordable car with a smaller budget and find success," commented Harris.

Racing since he was 18 years old, Harris has honed his skills over the last decade in the local bracket racing scene, as well as gaining tons of experience as a driver in IHRA competition, placing 5th in the world last year in Top Dragster.

For 2009, Harris is seriously examining the possibility of adding a second car to this racing enterprise. In addition to the Big Dog GTO, Harris could very well be making a move to his biggest stage yet, with talks of fielding a Pro Nitrous entry for ADRL competition.

Catch the cult-following Big Dog series in action next month, as the series assembles again on September 4, 2008.

Story and photo by: Van Abernethy Press Releases
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