Drag Illustrated Issue 180, January / February 2023 | Page 54

Special Section
AT THE END of the PDRA ’ s first season in 2014 , Todd “ King Tut ” Tutterow claimed the Pro Boost season championship . At the recent conclusion of the PDRA ’ s ninth season , Tutterow was crowned the world champion in WS Construction Pro Boost presented by P2 Contracting and Ty- Drive yet again .
Tutterow , driver and tuner of the screw-blown P2 Contracting ’ 20 Camaro , started the season with back-to-back wins . Runner-up finishes at two of the last races of the year , plus a rainout at the penultimate race , put Tutterow in the position to clinch the title with a first-round win at the World Finals .
“ We started out up front , which makes it a little easier ,” Tutterow said . “ Melanie [ Salemi ] was right there on our heels the whole time . She kept gaining and gaining . We lost GALOT [ DragWars ]. That didn ’ t really seal the deal , but it made it a lot easier . Then we had a very lucky run first round . My car was missing , running on about six cylinders , and [ Don Tolley ’ s ] car shut off . It was just meant to be .”
FOR THE FOURTH YEAR in a row , Jim Halsey wrapped up the PDRA season as the Switzer Dynamics Pro Nitrous world champion . The driver of the Brandon Switzer-tuned , Fulton-powered “ Daddy Shark ” ’ 68 Camaro won two races and took runner-up honors at another two races to hold off Chris Rini ’ s late-season charge . Halsey is now the only driver in PDRA history to win four world championships in the same class . “ It ’ s pretty satisfying ,” said Halsey , who credited his team , including Switzer , wife Cathy , crew chief Eric Davis , Michael McMillan , and Melissa Switzer . “ To be the only person to do four in a row is pretty gratifying . The first championship was probably the most exciting because we hadn ’ t done it before . This one , being four in a row , it just shows what kind of work these guys put into the program and the dedication they have .”
SECOND-GENERATION Mountain Motor Pro Stock driver Johnny Pluchino continues to make his mark on the class , as he clinched his second Liberty ’ s Gears Extreme Pro Stock presented by AED Competition world championship . The 2022 title is Pluchino ’ s fourth PDRA world championship and the team ’ s fifth , adding to his two titles in Pro 632 and his father John ’ s 2016 Extreme Pro Stock championship . “ I was asked on the top end what this means to me and the first word that came to mind was grateful ,” Pluchino said after winning in the second round of eliminations at the World Finals . “ To be in the position I ’ m in because of all the people that are around me , whether it ’ s my dad and crew , the sponsors and partners that we have , just everybody . It puts me in this position to be successful . I ’ m a kid living out my dream . I ’ ve had this dream to race at this level and be successful as long as I can remember . For all these pieces to come together , grateful is the best way I can explain it .”
54 PDRA660 . com