IF IN the history of motorsport there was ever a deserved winner of a Hard Luck Award, Sydney’s Louis Younis has to be it. His wild nitrous smallblock LJ was built especially for Drag Challenge but also found itself in the Elite Hall at Summernats 28, so it’s a bit of a looker as well.

Having run an 8.88@154mph in the lead-up to Drag Challenge, the Torry looked set to keep the turbo LS cars honest in Outlaw Blown, until disaster struck. “I had a big wheelstand during testing and she lost oil pressure, picked up a bearing and snapped a rod, and that was the end of that,” Louis says.

Not easily defeated, he sourced a far milder 383ci Chev, freshened it up, fitted the nitrous plate and dropped it in just in time for Drag Challenge. But drag racing is a harsh mistress, and Louis lunched the replacement motor at Portland on day two. Even though he knew it meant disqualification, he sourced another 350ci replacement engine from Gumtree and his team fitted it at a workshop at the track before soldiering on.

To add insult to injury, they went on to snap two pushrods, break a drawbar on the trailer, cop a hefty list of defects, and lose first gear from their two-speed Powerglide trans. But Louis made a pass at every track despite unimaginable adversity, and you’ve got to respect that!

“By day two we all realised that this shit is serious,” Louis says. “Driving a Top 60 rear-clipped car over 1500km through the countryside just added to the challenge. Would I do it again? Hell Yeah! It’s Australia’s ultimate event!”


Class: Turbosmart Outlaw Blown


Engine: Chev 383ci Induction: Nitrous Transmission: Powerglide Converter: 5500rpm Diff: 4.3:1 Power: 500hp (aspirated) Previous PB: 8.88@154mph Best Drag Challenge Run: 10.48@128mph


Tony Younis