Shane Cattle made the trip from Townsville to enter his 440 big block two-door Dodge hard top at Rockynats. On Saturday he said he had loads of fun racing in the street drags. Picture: Rodney Stevens
Shane Cattle made the trip from Townsville to enter his 440 big block two-door Dodge hard top at Rockynats. On Saturday he said he had loads of fun racing in the street drags. Picture: Rodney Stevens

Townsville man drag races his Dodge at Rockynats

Making the eight-hour, 720km journey from Townsville to Rare Spares Rockynats was all about having fun for Shane Cattle.

The proud Chrysler enthusiast was one of countless Rockynats entrants who continuously looped back around to Quay Street on Saturday to race in the street drag eliminations.

“I came down from Townsville because it sounded like a bit of fun, so I thought lets do it,” he said.

Shane Cattle launches off the line in his 440 big block Dodge hard top against a R35 Skyline GTR in the Rockynats street drags. Picture: Rodney Stevens
Shane Cattle launches off the line in his 440 big block Dodge hard top against a R35 Skyline GTR in the Rockynats street drags. Picture: Rodney Stevens

The modified car enthusiast said coming to Rockynats was a family affair for the Cattle’s.

“My wife brought down a convertible, an old VF Valiant convertible to race it too,” he said.

“Like I am, she’s having a lot of fun racing her car too.”

Mr Cattle’s bright orange two-door Dodge hard top featured a bonnet scoop to channel more air into the 440 cubic inch big block V8 under the bonnet.

With a huge amount of torque from the engine, Mr Cattle, like a lot of Rockynats street drag competitors struggled to get traction.

“It’s pretty slippery out there, so I don’t know how good my times will be,” he said.

“It just spins the tyres off the start.”

Like a lot of competitors, Mr Cattle wasn’t too disappointed if he didn’t win or do excellent times.

The opportunity to race your car in controlled conditions, on a public street, was too good to pass up.

“I’m having a ball,” Mr Cattle said.

“It’s so much fun racing some of my mates and people I hadn’t met before.

“You don’t get the chance to go flat-out down a public road like this, so I’m having a hell of a lot of fun.”

Cars and bikes of all shapes, sizes and engine capacities battled it out on the eighth-mile track at the eastern end of Quay Street.

Shane Cattle launches off the line in his 440 big block Dodge hard top against a R35 Skyline GTR in the Rockynats street drags. Picture: Rodney Stevens
Shane Cattle launches off the line in his 440 big block Dodge hard top against a R35 Skyline GTR in the Rockynats street drags. Picture: Rodney Stevens

The vehicles lined-up side-by-side out the front of the Heritage Hotel, before moving forward into the timing beams to both activate two lights.

When both machines were staged, the starter pressed a button to activate the ‘Christmas tree’, a set of lights that counts down at timed intervals until the green is illuminated.

Then it’s a full-throttle race over 201 metre (660 foot) track, with the vehicles activating and turning off a timing system at the start and finish.