They breed them tough in the south — so tough that when they go drag racing, track prep is deemed as unrequired. At least that was the case for the Oamaru Drag Racing event that took place at Oamaru Airport on March 19.

The rules, in place to protect the airport runway surface, are fairly simple, no static or standing burnouts — period. But this doesn’t stop plenty of tough local cars coming out for a play.

On the day it was the ’75 Camaro driven by Neil Robertson that took home the bragging rights, crossing the quarter-mile finish line in an impressive 11.8 seconds.

Doing his best to represent the import camp was Chris Thompson’s Mitsubishi Evo–powered Mirage, which managed a best of 12.293.

Craig McNaught braved the elements to run some numbers in his stroked 318-powered T-bucket, and was rewarded with a 12.64 for his efforts.

Craig O’Hara was doing his best to take home the T-Bucket title, but narrowly missed out, running 12.82. Close, quick, but not quick enough to beat McNaught.

The most popular vehicles on the day appeared to be Nissan Skyline R32 GT-Rs, and with four-wheel drive and twin turbos from the factory, it’s not hard to see why. Quickest of the GT-Rs on the day was Nathan Dixon with a 12.84, followed by Simon Smith at 13.48,and Andrew Malloch with a 14.07.

It may not have been the quickest, but this Firebird certainly looks the part. A best of 13.2 likely not all that indicative of the car’s true potential on a prepped surface.

With over 70 cars racing on the day, as well as a handful of motorbikes, there was no shortage of action. However, if you did get bored of the racing, checking out the car park wasn’t a bad option, as there were plenty of gems such as this slammed Chev to be found.

Quickest of the bikes was Cleland Brownie’s CBR1000RR with a scary fast 11.24 — a fraction ahead of Peter Oliver’s 11.26 on his GSXR600.

As well as the cars that you’d usually find on the drag strip, there were a handful you wouldn’t, such as Peter Newbury’s 2007 Porsche Cayenne, which ran a respectable 14.75.

Speaking of unexpected, how about an off-road racer — not something you see going down the quarter all that often!

A big congratulations must go out to all involved with running the day, and all who turned up to make it what it was.

For more info on the Oamaru Drag Racing visit their Facebook page, and for more photos, click here.