Gilley Scores Stock Eliminator win in 1969 Dodge Dart GTS 340
Pomona, CA – Just like in the professional ranks, a Mopar-powered NHRA Sportsman competitor visited the winner’s circle at Pomona. Larry Gilley marched through six rounds of intense competition and reached the finish line first in a heads-up final to claim the Stock Eliminator crown at Pomona in his 1968 Dodge Dart GTS 340.
“It’s a dream come true. I’ve always wanted to win the Winternationals my whole life, since I was a kid and came her with my father,” said Gilley, 54, who also earned the $500 Dodge Top Finisher award with his victory. Winner of the prestigious NHRA U.S. Nationals event last year, Gilley has been competing for more than 15 years in nothing but Mopar-powered Dodge and Plymouth muscle cars.
“NHRA Sportsman racers are the most dedicated and passionate competitors, and we congratulate Larry Gilley on his victory today,” said Pietro Gorlier, Head of Parts and Service (Mopar), FCA. “Through our long-running Mopar Contingency Program, we are able to recognize and reward racers like Larry who compete and win with Mopar products. We hope this victory is the first of many in 2018 for our Mopar-powered Sportsman competitors.”
Under the Mopar Contingency Program, Sportsman racers who win or finish runner-up while utilizing Mopar valve covers, intake manifolds, cylinder heads and engine assemblies are eligible for monetary rewards.
“Congratulations to Larry Gilley on racing his Dodge Dart GTS 340 to victory today in the Stock Eliminator class,” said Steve Beahm, Head of Passenger Cars, Dodge//SRT, Chrysler and FIAT, FCA North America. “We are proud to support passionate Sportsman racers like Gilley through the Dodge Top Finisher award, now in its second year, which awards $500 to the Stock and Super Stock drivers who advance the furthest behind the wheel of a Mopar-powered car at all 24 national events.”
Staci Smith, from Lancaster, California, drove her 1993 Dodge Daytona Super Stocker to the fifth round at the season-opening event. Smith’s Daytona runs in the GT/HA category, allowing her to convert the car to a rear-wheel-drive configuration and install a Mopar V8 engine. Smith, a 30-year-old who has spent most of her life racing with her family, took home the Dodge Top Finisher award in Super Stock.