Although it has been a year in which many car shows were silenced, the recent 23rd annual Goodguys Southwest Nationals at WestWorld of Scottsdale, Arizona, ended on a high note. A high exhaust note, that is.
The show field was sold out with more than 2,000 hot rod and custom cars, coronavirus pandemic health restrictions were observed, and the weekend again featured the Duel in the Desert, an autocross tournament with 32 drivers and their classic vehicles vying for the Goodguys AutoCrosser of the Year title.
Leading the pack to Scottsdale was back-to-back champion Scott Fraser driving a real-deal 1966 Shelby AC Cobra owned by Bruce Cambern. Although not 100 percent original, the heavily modified Shelby has a custom race chassis and draws power from a Kinetics Racing 440cid V8.
After a qualifying run of 37.876 seconds, Fraser was off to the second round, Defeating James Eaton in his extremely clean 1985 Ford Mustang with a run of 37.95 seconds. The next round brought fierce competition with race car driver Robby Unser, driving the Team Speedway 1970 Chevrolet Camaro. Fraser won handily with a 37.763 time.
Frasier found his way to the finals after a 37.329 run against Eric Sheely piloting the Sheely Collection 1972 Chevrolet Corvette.
Like a destined wild-west shoot out, Frasier found himself against a long-time competitor, Brian Peters, behind the wheel of a Chevy LS-powered 1972 Datsun 240Z owned by David Carroll. Peters and Fraser have been racing each other for 14 years in SCCA and Goodguys AutoCross competitions.
Fraser again pulled out front to win his third consecutive AutoCrosser of the Year title with an outstanding 37.058 final run. Not only was this the fastest time for Fraser, it was also the fastest time the whole weekend.
Speeding into Sunday, Goodguys AutoCross welcomed late-model horsepower onto the track for the All American AutoCross. After a long day of hard racing, Scott Spiewak won the All American Sunday class title in his 2007 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 while Sheely returned, but with a 2017 Ford Focus RS, to take the All American Shootout class title.