For Top Fuel dragsters at Cayuga, it’s Paton-pending


CAYUGA – Todd Paton, who divides his time between Paris, Ontario, and Bristol, Tennessee can gain a little ground on the leaders with a strong showing this weekend.

Paton will pilot his father’s Tim Horton-sponsored Top Fuel dragster down the quarter-mile chute at Toronto Motorsports Park or Cayuga Dragway Park as many still call it.

But his work will be cut out for him. Paton, who is also a licensed commercial pilot, has 10 Top Fuel category points going into this weekend’s International Hot Rod Association’s Canadian Nationals. That’s 437 back of the leader, Clay Milligan. With Milligan and several other top name drivers scheduled to burn the track, the 36-year-old Paton will be challenged.

In the past he has risen to the task. He won the IHRA’s Funny Car World Championship in 1993 and again in 1995. During his 14-year racing career, Paton has been voted Canadian Drag Racer of the Year five times and finished in the top ten in the NHRA Federal-Mogul Funny Car points battle from 1996 to 1999.

Paton’s best ET is a 4.703 seconds and his best speed is 315.42 mph or 507.51 km/h.

A win at Cayuga would be a nice homecoming gift.