New Winners, Big Upsets Highlight Chi-Town’s King Of The Streets

No prep racing fans were treated to a ton of great heads-up, clocks off, side-by-side drag racing action at the nineteenth running of Chi-Town’s King of the Streets (KOTS) no-prep event, held at Great Lakes Dragaway in Union Grove, Wisconsin. King of the Streets is well regarded as the birthplace of no-prep drag racing, and it has remained near to its roots over the years. The eight-class event brought in the usual no-prep heavy hitters, along with some new blood that set out to give the veterans a run for their money.

The day began with rain showers that cleared out mid-morning, leaving the event with overcast skies until fog and mist set in around late evening. Downtime between classes was kept to a minimum, which helped to get racing completed at an event record-setting end time of just after eight, before unfavorable weather returned. 

Tony V (left lane) out in front of Mike Radlein’s third-gen Camaro during the first round of the Seniors class.

New names were added to winners history books in the Juniors and Seniors car classes; A KOTS veteran racer, Max Pizzi, claimed his first KOTS win in the Juniors class with his pump gas El Camino, ‘Kilpil,’ after taking out Cranky Frankie in the final round. Anthony Mangiaracina, known in racing circles as Tony V, piloting his burnt orange fourth-generation Camaro in the Seniors class, successfully made it through three rounds and took the win in the final from the recently rebuilt Fox body Mustang named ‘Section 8,’ driven by Kevin Connolly, better known as Plumber Kevin. 

Photo gallery

VIEW FULL GALLERY >

Being the fifth KOTS event in a row for Max Pizzi (right lane) he was able to secure the Junior class win during the final round against Cranky Frankie (left lane). A week prior to KOTS, the El Camino was without an engine and transmission, leading to many late nights, including Friday night when he was up until 4 a.m. raceday morning swapping tires, changing plugs and checking valves. Pizzi shred his thoughts going into the final and after crossing the finish line: “This is the race I’ve been wanting all winter and I knew I had what it took to win. Once I crossed the finish line I screamed in my car the entire way back to the pits and thought of my dad, as he and I built this car starting back in the early 2000s when I was 12 years old. He passed away when I was 17. He is the reason I still have this car and the reason I am into this sport. I knew he was watching down.”

In a Senior class round two upset Joey Rabiola, Boost 12, took the win from his opponent, three-time Senior class winner, The Shootout King, Keith Szabo. Boost 12 moved on to the semi-finals where he was paired against his Boosted Misfits teammate, Tony V. Rabiola didn't get the win that round, but what better way to go out than to a teammate who then goes on to win the final round for the first time?

Boost12’s crew goes wild on the starting line after their upset victory.

A new KOTS contender is Wally Farbaky and his fourth-generation Camaro built by Legend Racing Enterprises and FTR Performance. The team recently won the River Redemption race with the car at Cordova at the end of May and were looking to follow it up with a win at KOTS in the Senior class. During testing Friday night before KOTS, the team switched from radials to slicks when the car wasn't performing how they wanted. "[The car] went right down, three passes in a row [on slicks]. It made a really good hit, [Wally] peddled it, he was out of the throttle for almost a second and some point in the run it dropped a lifter. So we pulled everything off the right side of the engine, replaced the lifter, got home at 2:30 a.m. and came back [to the track] at 8 a.m we, threw it back together and had it running by 10:15." Wally won first round against Glenn R's Fox body Mustang but lost second round to Tony V.

Kevin Connolly may have finished runner-up with the Fox body Mustang, Section 8, in the Senior class, but Connolly secured the win for his team in the Gangster 26 class after beating out Pete S’s Fox body Mustang in the final round. This is the second win Connolly has earned piloting a car for Curtis Martin, a fifth personal Gangster class win, and he still continues to hold onto the record for having the most KOTS final round wins.

Connolly was involved in a violent crash with his Mustang, Section 8, this past April in Kentucky for the No-Time class at the Outlaw Street Car Reunion at Beech Bend Raceway. He was okay but the car was mangled. With the expertise and skill of Tin Soldier Racecars and Fast Forward Race Cars, the Mustang was back up and running with Connolly in the drivers seat in just over three weeks, with KOTS being the first event back.

Repeat Unlimited class winner, Craig Shefchik was back with his beautiful purple Chevelle in an attempt to claim a third win, but the 2015 class winner, Kilpatrick, ended up the victor after taking the win in a suspenseful final round against Brian Mitchell, best known as Tuff Enuff, and his Chevy II Nova. A perfect reaction time of .000 from Kilpatrick over Tuff’s .012 red-light only intensified the celebration.

The Unlimited cars took advantage of the new water-only burnout rule that allowed one burnout to go past the starting line, including Craig Schefchik (left ) and Larry Baker (center), ending their burnouts around half track. The final round (right) came down to Clinton Kilpatrick in Bad Judgement (left lane) vs Brian Mitchell aka Tuff Enuff (right lane) where Kilpatrick took home his second KOTS Unlimited class win.

The Banger class was mixture of domestics and imports, where the imports prevailed, leading to a first-ever all-import final round with Jamie Davila’s Civic, Black Heart, up against Boostin Performance’s Eagle Talon, Red Demon. It was the Davila’s second time being in the final and the Civic was on a good pass, but it just didn’t have enough for the Red Demon, which collected its second KOTS event win.

Two quarter-mile exhibition car classes were added to the day’s run order: a 220 Hard-Tire class for non-AWD cars with a minimum 220 UTOG tread wear rating and a 275 class for cars with a maximum size drag radial of 275. Both classes were invite-only and capped at eight cars. Matt Strange took the win over Greg Olejars in the final of 275 and Christo Papagaris was the victor in the Hard-Tire class against Joey DeYoung.

Matt Strange (left) the 275 winner, and Greg Olejars, 275 runner-up.

Christo Papagaris(left), the 220 winner and Joey DeYoung, 220 runner-up.

Three bike classes rounded out the event with the Junior class seeing 16 entrants and eight entrants each in the Extreme and Senior classes. Sam Reichelt came out on top in the Junior class after the final round against Phil Stoll, a two-time Senior Bike class winner. Shawn Books collected a repeat win in the Seniors class after winning the class last fall at KOTS XVIII, and the final round of the Extreme class came down to Joey Peters and Mike Sarauer, with Peters taking the win. 

For those interested in racing or spectating at the 20th King of the Streets event at the end of the summer, Great Lakes Dragaway in Wisconsin is the place to be on September 15th, 2018, and you better believe we’ll be there!

About the author

Allison Cipra

Allison grew up going to car shows every summer with her DadAllison took her interest in photography seriously and during college graduated with a degree in photography technology.
Read My Articles

Drag Racing in your Inbox.

Build your own custom newsletter with the content you love from Dragzine, directly to your inbox, absolutely FREE!

Free WordPress Themes
Dragzine NEWSLETTER - SIGN UP FREE!

We will safeguard your e-mail and only send content you request.

Dragzine - Drag Racing Magazine

We'll send you the most interesting Dragzine articles, news, car features, and videos every week.

Dragzine - Drag Racing Magazine

Dragzine NEWSLETTER - SIGN UP FREE!

We will safeguard your e-mail and only send content you request.

Dragzine - Drag Racing Magazine

Thank you for your subscription.

Subscribe to more FREE Online Magazines!

We think you might like...



Hot Rods & Muscle Cars

Diesel Army

Engine Tech

Dragzine - Drag Racing Magazine

Thank you for your subscription.

Subscribe to more FREE Online Magazines!

We think you might like...

  • Hot Rods & Muscle Cars
  • Diesel Army
  • Engine Tech

Dragzine - Drag Racing Magazine

Thank you for your subscription.

Thank you for your subscription.

Dragzine - Drag Racing Magazine

Thank you for your subscription.

Thank you for your subscription.

Loading