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Muscle Cars at the Strip


Compiled by Jim Baker


The latest Muscle Cars at the Strip ran the last weekend in April at LVMS. It was a little warm, but no extreme wind. Phil & Jill Painter always seem to pull off a very popular event every year. While a bastion of MOPAR lovers, the tournament also includes all other muscle car makes.


For 2019, a new feature was presented called ‘King of the Cash’ for Big Tire racers. Mary Baltzell organizes this group and has a locked-in field to insure participation.

The ‘King’, John Scalpi wearing his crown and robe, holds his trophy after winning the ‘Kash’ at the star studded event!


Another new innovation this year was a special $10K race. Well known bracket racer, Parker Theobald claimed the win, while Las Vegas’ own Greg Hicks made the semis.

Parker Theobald


MCATS is known for the Quick 32, a special category for the fastest cars during qualifying rounds. A long time MCATS supporter, John Tiegen continued his 2019 hot streak with his ’64 Plymouth Hemi named ‘Kemo Sabe’. Ron Leach was runner-up.

John Tiegen


PRO MOD: Last year Ed Thornton was the fast man in Pro Mod, but did not win. In 2019 Ed returned to Las Vegas and sealed the deal!


Jeremy Hanger was runner-up.


OPEN SMALL TIRE: Frank Yee, another loyal MCATS supporter was victorious. Last year, Frank finished second in the category. This year he carried the day.


SUPER PRO: Easily one of the most popular MCATS categories, the traditional Super Pro (Electronics), was taken by hard working Greg Hicks from right here in Las Vegas. Greg not only won over a large field, he did so after being a semi-finalist in Quick Eliminator. Paul Peterson, one of the Ohio group and last year’s winner was runner-up.


PRO: The largest field of the event, Pro Eliminator, was claimed by another of the colorful Ohio team, Jason Wheatcraft. Clovis, Calif.’s Jay Waxler was the Mopar Duster runner-up.

FACTORY EXPERIMENTAL (A/FX): Daryl Dinkel and Ron Kissner (driving the Sox & Martin tribute car) shared this popular win. Runners up included last year’s winner, Lee Anderson plus Cliff Lozis.

Lee Anderson


STOCK/SUPER STOCK: Grant Huys took this win, while Mark Ehler was R/U and Shane Studley claimed a semi-final finish!


GEN 3 HEMI CHALLENGE: Nearly as popular as Pro, the new Challengers and Chargers did classic battle this year. Winding up on top was Phil Irby with long time NHRA star, Don Lutz as R/U. Mark Clayton was in the semi-finals.


HELLCAT SHOOTOUT: Limited by the number of these vehicles sold, Terry Rolin claimed the title with David Cain as R/up.


MODERN MUSCLE: This is a popular contest by all makes of muscle cars since the Painters added the name Muscle Cars At The Strip to their title. Mopar stalwart John Irving from Boulder City, NV, took the victory over Bryan Sloan.

John Irving


MOPAR SMALL TIRE: This new special event was for Mopar racers only. Shilo Davis won the title while Jay Anderson was runner/up.


MOPARS vs THE WORLD: The truck load plus from Ohio with their similar painted cars really claimed the day at the 2019 MCATS. Ron Stayer knocked out Ben Kissner for the win, while Chevy stalwart Todd Ishibari was in the semi-finals.

Todd Ishibari


TRUCK CLASS: Ben Kissner hauled the freight home while Aaron Cruz brought the small stuff.


SPORT COMPACT: Years ago, when we drove a Turbo PT Cruiser, this was the class for us. We never made it but Jon Riley won this year while Kelly Hadlock finished second.


PONY CAR WARS: Phil Painter threw this Mustang bracket in, so all the winners could not be MOPAR. Don Lutz, who had a remarkable event, won the class, with Mike Radman taking runner-up.


TROPHY CLASS: No cash, but you can win a very nice trophy as Ron Vigesas can attest. David Teller fell just short.


The 2019 MCATS edition is in the books! Jeff Foster (Drag Racing Manager at Las Vegas Motor Speedway) deserves more credit than he gets. In concert with the hard working Painter family, the two pulled off another in the long history of MATS and now MCATS events. Make plans today to check out the 2020 MOPARTY! 




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