Over the course of history, our sport has seen its share of unique and entertaining attractions that stretch beyond the bounds of traditional class racing, but through it all, there’s never been anything quite like the Byron Dragway’s now world famous Power Wheelstanding Contest that takes place at the 1/4 mile strip in Byron, Ill., a short drive from Chicago.
The premise of the event is simple: load up for bear and perform the wildest, most insane wheelstand you possibly can. Whether it’s a lengthy 1/8 mile wheelstand or a quick ascent onto the bumper, every flavor of hoop-hanging has a chance to win this prestigious event. The fans decide the winner, and there are no boundary rules, no qualifying, and no side-by-side races…it’s all about the show. Whereas a crash in a traditional race wold often spell defeat, turning your race car into a smoldering scrap heap at this event just might make you a winner. After all, it’s happened before.
Entrants remove the wheelie bars, toss a bunch of weight in the trunk, change the gearing, and employ all sorts of other methods to get their race cars on the bumper and the crowd in a frenzy.
Photographer Mike Pryka was on hand at Byron for the big show and captured some of the wheelstanding action that borders on the insane. From an incredible 1/8 mile wheelstand to cars on two wheels (and not the back two) to bumper dragging, K-member slamming, and outright destruction, the Byron Wheelstand competition had a little bit of it all. Check out the nearly 200 photos from Byron in the gallery below.