2017 LS Fest West by Holley
LS Fest West 2017
After waiting for six long months, the time finally came for LS Fest in Las Vegas! This event was announced back in September and we had to do a double take to make sure it was true. With the all the fun Vegas has to offer, LS Fest was the icing on the cake.
LS Fest is one of our absolute favorite shows to go to and we were curious how the show was going to be in Vegas. They capitalized on all the extra room Las Vegas Motor Speedway has to offer and expanded. The autocross was now had it’s own dedicated course as did the drift course. They added dirt jumping as well in the dirt arena – an amazing event we were excited to see.
Put The Pedal To The Metal!
As you might expect, Las Vegas was hot! On Friday the temps hit triple digits, with a dry wind kicking up in the afternoon. None of that stopped the racing though. On Saturday the weather cooled off about 15 degrees but still had a ton of wind. Not enough wind that it caused much trouble other than destroying a few EZ-UP’s. Sunday the temps really dropped off and cooled down to a really enjoyable day.
All the action started off Friday morning bright and early. There was so much happening it was hard to pick a starting point, but we knew that would be the QA1 and Lateral-G.net autocross course. Upon entering the venue, the autocross course was the very first event that you saw. The course was large and resulted in 30-40 second times with some good stretches to let out a few ponies.
Most the cars on the autocross were also apart of the Grand Champion competition. This is where they compete on the autocross, road course, drag race, and 3S challenge. With over 150 competitors in the challenge, they had competitors split up where in the morning half were taking on the road course and the other half were on the autocross – then switching during lunch.
The road course is the same track you might be familiar with from the Optima events. The long backstretch led into a sweeping right hand turn easily saw triple digit speeds. Coming out of the that backstretch onto the front stretch is a few turns that seems to throw competitors off and saw a few cars throwing up some dirt.
Friday at 7:30PM after a long hard day of racing the road course and autocross, the Grand Champion competitors headed to the strip to get their runs in. On Friday each competitor only got one run, which proved rather challenging. These racers are used to going around cones, not going in straight lines. Launching the car was a challenge but many racers were clicking off 11-second times. More drag racing ensued on Saturday night with a major casualty. Jane Thurmond was running down the strip and blew her engine on a really good run.
More Action All Around
In-between all the racing action was a Show-N-Shine that held a vast array of cars – all LS powered. Just like at LS Fest East, there’s just a little bit of everything on display. We saw a G-Body lowrider, complete with hydro’s on display with LS Power. Or how about an 80’s Chevy Van? There was no shortage of ’70 Chevelles either, a whole row of them on display as well.
We took a quick jaunt over to the dirt track to see what all the dust was about. Inside the track was LS powered trucks ringing out their motors and flying through the air. There was about a 70 foot table top they would line up and fly over, jumping about 15 feet into the air. We couldn’t believe how high and far these guys were jumping their trucks!
At the end of the weekend, Mike Dusold walked away as the Grand Champion for the weekend. For the rest of the results visit here. For being a first year event LS Fest West was a great success. Tons of action going on no matter where you looked and plenty of room to not feel on top of each other. We can’t wait for next years event to see what it brings.