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Print This Issue! - Mopar Max Magazine
Vol
umeI
VI
ssue9 -September2009
Past:The426HemimakesitsdebutattheHotRodDragRaceinJune1964
Present:ProjectFightingFishgetsofftherotisserie
Future:DonGarlitsreturnstocompetitioninhisDragPakChallenger
Volume NEWS, Issue
September 2, 2009
MOPAR HEMI CHALLENGE SET FOR SEPT. 4 AT U.S. NATIONALS
7th Annual Ross Pistons NMCA
Muscle Car Nationals
March 27-29, 2009 - Bradenton, Florida
8th Annual NOS NMCA
Muscle Car Nationals
May 1-3, 2009 - Bowling Green, Kentucky
The ninth edition of the Mopar HEMI Challenge Race Series at the Mac Tools U.S. Nationals pits nearly two dozen
of the famous SS/AH 1968 HEMI Darts and Barracudas against each other to see if Charlie Westcott Jr., will win
his fourth Indy HEMI Challenge event in the last five years and collect the $10,000 payout.
Westcott Jr., the usual favorite in these events, has a brand-new ’68 HEMI Barracuda named War Fish running for
the first time, so all eyes will be on him to see whether he will again be a threat. “The new car is ready and it’s
running well,” said Westcott.
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7th Annual Kook's Custom Headers
NMCA Muscle Car Nationals
June 5-7, 2009 - Reading, Pennsylvania
4th Annual NMRA/NMCA Super
Bowl of Street Legal Drag Racing
July 16-19, 2009 - Joliet, Illinois
Inaugural NMRA Ford Nationals /
NMCA Hot Rod & Muscle Car
Nationals All Star Nationals
August 6-9, 2009 - Charlotte, North Carolina
View Full Schedule
Westcott Jr.’s old War Fish (above) may be the
winningest Super Stock HEMI in history,
surpassing even the ’68 HEMI Barracudas of
Ronnie Sox (1969 U.S. Nationals winner) and
Arlen Vanke (1968 U.S. Nationals winner).
No matter what happens to Charlie this year on
Friday, Sept. 4, chances are that the name
Westcott will still be listed as one of the
favorites. Charlie’s father, Charlie Westcott Sr.,
is also a fast runner. He holds the top speed
record in the SS/AH class at just a tick below
160 mph.
The field also includes Melvin Daniels, a
Yardley, Pa., dentist who won the most recent
Mopar HEMI Challenge. Ohio Chrysler dealer
and recent winner Jim Pancake will compete in
his ’68 HEMI Dart, as will Dodge dealer Darrell
Marvel of Big Rapids, Mich. Randy Warford of
Nashville, Ind., will compete in his ’68 HEMI
Barracuda and is also bringing a new Dodge
Challenger Drag Pak by Mopar to run in A/Stock
Automatic during the weekend.
15th Annual Nitto Tire
Spring Break Shootout
March 5-8, 2009 - Bradenton, Florida
9th Annual NMRA Ford Nationals
May 15-17, 2009 - Atco, New Jersey
6th Annual Aeromotive NMRA
Ford Nationals
June 12-13, 2009 - Milan, Michigan
The Mopar HEMI Challenge Race Series will
visit the Jegs Northern SPORTSnationals, Sept.
25–27, at National Trail Raceway near
Columbus, Ohio, and the Dutch Classic, Oct.
22–25, at Maple Grove Raceway in Reading,
Pa. Each event offers $5,000 prize money to
the winner. (Chris Haverly photo) [9/2/2009]]
4th Annual NMRA/NMCA Super
Bowl of Street Legal Drag Racing
July 16-19, 2009 - Joliet, Illinois
Inaugural Nitto Tire NMRA / NMCA
All-Star Nationals
August 6-9, 2009 - Charlotte, North Carolina
View Full Schedule
Mopar Memos - MoparMax.com
Volume NEWS, Issue
September 2, 2009
2009 U.S. NATIONALS MOPAR HEMI CHALLENGE ENTRANTS
Driver
Hometown
Make
Entry
Joe Teuton III
Schriever, La.
’68 Plymouth
SOUTHLAND TRUCK GROUP
Wendell Howes
Rathesay, Neb.
’68 Barracuda
HOWES RACING
James Keyes
Durand, Mich.
’68 Barracuda
KEYES & LEWIS CUDA
Jeffrey Kobylski
Macomb Twp, Mich.
’68 Dodge
MODERN CYLINDER HEAD
Jim Pancake
Delaware, Ohio
’68 Dart
CARRIAGE TOWNE CDJ INC.
Dave Raybourn
Modesto, Calif.
’68 Barracuda
TCB INDUSTRIAL/AMERICAN META
Melvin Daniels
Yardley, Pa.
’68 Dart
RAY BARTON RACING ENGINES
Bucky Hess II
Bunker Hill, W.Va.
’68 Woody
BUCKYS LTD AUTOBODY INC
Gary Wolkwitz
Annandale, N.J.
’68 Dodge
EARTHQUAKE
Chuck Comella
Sanibel, Fla.
’68 Dart
ISLAND HEMI
David Barton
Robesonia, Pa.
’68 Barracuda
MAHAN & BARTON ENG
Bill Brooks
Kissimmee, Fla.
’68 Barracuda
BILL BROOKS RACING
Charlie Westcott
Parma, Mich.
’68 Barracuda
JACKSON DRYWALL
William Bales
Connersville, Ind.
’68 Barracuda
MR2 PERFORMANCE
Randall Warford
Nashville, Ind.
’68 Barracuda
WARFORD MOTORSPORTS
Darrell Marvel
Big Rapids, Mich.
’68 Barracuda
MARCO DODGE/INTOON RACING
Charlie Westcott Jr.
Parma, Mich.
’68 Barracuda
WAR FISH
Stephen Hebert
Westlake, La.
’68 Plymouth
SS/AH
Tim Hebert
Thibodaux, La.
’68 Barracuda
SOUTHLAND FLYER/HEBERT BROS.
Russ Campbell
Springfield, Mo.
’68 Barracuda
SUPER STOCK A/H
Dan Zrust
Maple Grove, Minn.
’68 Barracuda
QA1/TOTAL ENGINE SERVICE
Chuck Rayburn
Castro Valley, Calif.
’68 Barracuda
CHUCK RAYBURN RACING
John Rains
Santa Paula, Calif.
’68 Dart
JOHN RAINS HELI HEMI [9/2/2009]
GARLITS TO RETURN TO NHRA DRAG RACING AT U.S. NATIONALS
Garlits made some passes in his new Challenger at the Aug. 28-30 World Series of Drag Racing at Cordova (Ill.) Dragway Park.
"Big Daddy" Don Garlits is making a comeback to NHRA competition for the first time since 2003, driving his
Dodge Challenger Drag Pak by Mopar in Stock Eliminator at the Mac Tools U.S. Nationals on Labor Day weekend.
His historic first run in the Drag Pak will be on Wednesday, Sept. 2, in A/Stock Automatic qualifying at O'Reilly
Raceway Park in Indianapolis. The full U.S. Nationals event is scheduled to begin Sept. 2 with final eliminations on
Monday, Sept. 7. more...
Mopar Memos - MoparMax.com
Volume NEWS, Issue
September 2, 2009
Garlits hung up his helmet after Top Fuel qualifying at the U.S. Nationals exactly six years ago in 2003. He last ran a stock class car in 1963 when he
competed in a 1963 Dodge Max Wedge drag package car carrying "Garlits Dodge" graphics. His new Dodge Challenger Drag Pak by Mopar has the
same lettering emblazoned on its sides, along with the same Mopar graphics from his historic run last year alongside "Miss Mighty Mopar" Judy Lilly in
Drag Pak prototypes at the Mopar Mile-High NHRA Nationals.
"I like my Dodge Challenger Drag Pak much better than a dragster," said Garlits, referring to the
current way Top Fuel dragsters are campaigned. "It takes 25 people to get a dragster to the line these
days. All I have to do with the Dodge Challenger is turn the key and take it there. When the light turns
green I have a ten-second ride —which is almost three times what I used to get — and I even have
time to look at the tach and shift gears."
Garlits retired for the first time in 1987, but returned for one race at Atlanta in 1992 and made a 300mph run at the U.S. Nationals in Indianapolis in 2001. He then ran a limited schedule of four NHRA
National events each year in 2002 and 2003 before he stepped out of Top Fuel at the request of his
wife, Pat. Get a closer look at this car and some words from “Big” himself in our Lead Story . (Jeff Burk photos) [9/2/2009]
CHRYSLER TO EXPAND ACCEPTED PRODUCT LIABILITY CLAIMS
In a letter sent Aug. 27 to Members of Congress, Chrysler Group LLC announced that the company will accept product liability claims on vehicles
manufactured by Chrysler LLC (now OldCarco LLC) before June 10, 2009, and involved in accidents on or after that date. On June 10, 2009, Chrysler
Group purchased substantially all of the assets of Old Carco.
"We know a lot more about the viability of our business today than when we purchased Old Carco's assets in its bankruptcy proceedings several months
ago," said John Bozzella, Senior Vice President, External Affairs & Public Policy, Chrysler Group LLC. "While Chrysler Group still faces challenges, we
are confident that the future viability of the company will not be threatened if we accept these claims."
ADVERTISEMENT
OldCarco filed for bankruptcy
protection on April 30, 2009.
Following many complex and lengthy
hearings, the bankruptcy court
approved the sale of substantially all
of OldCarco's assets to a newly
formed company, Chrysler Group
LLC. As part of the bankruptcy courtapproved purchase, Chrysler Group
had agreed to assume liability only
for cars sold by Chrysler Group. As a
result of today's announcement,
Chrysler Group's approach is
consistent with that taken by General
Motors as part of its bankruptcy
process.
"We want our customers to feel
comfortable and confident buying, driving and enjoying one of our vehicles," Bozzella said. "Chrysler Group vehicles meet or exceed all applicable
federal safety standards and have excellent safety records." [9/2/2009]
VEHICLE SHORTAGE LIMITED CHRYSLER’S ‘CASH FOR CLUNKER’ SUCCESS
Chrysler Group LLC on Sept. 1 reported a five percent sales increase in August compared with July 2009 despite low inventory levels on a number of
popular nameplates. However, Automotive News reports that Chrysler's sales fell 15.4 percent in August 2009 compared to 2008, worse than July's 9.4
percent drop.
Five of Chrysler Group's smallest vehicles -- the ones most in demand in the government's cash-for-clunkers program -- fell beneath a 10-day supply by
the end of August. The Chrysler Sebring sedan and convertible and PT Cruiser each have six-day supplies. The Jeep Compass has four days; the
Jeep Patriot, three days; and the Dodge Avenger, three days. Other vehicles in short supply include the Dodge Caliber at 12 days and Dodge Grand
Caravan at 14 days.
The shortages hurt Chrysler in the final month of the clunker program. "We weren't able to take full advantage of 'cash for clunkers' in August," said
Chrysler spokeswoman Kathy Graham. "We had a 12 percent share of 'cash for clunkers' in July, but in August it was 6.6 percent."
Chrysler produced more vehicles than it sold in August and plans to do so for the rest of the year. Chrysler's goal is to have a 60- to 70-day supply by
year end, she said. [9/2/2009]
Mopar Memos - MoparMax.com
Volume NEWS, Issue
September 2, 2009
MEET MOPAR DRIVERS BECKMAN AND CAPPS AT INDY KICK-OFF PARTY
Jack Beckman’s 2009 Valvoline/MTS Dodge show car will be on display along with the U.S. Army Top Fuel dragster. (Todd Dziadosz
photo)
NHRA fans will get the chance to meet Don Schumacher Racing drivers Ron Capps and Jack Beckman at the
Kick-Off Party for the 55th Annual U.S. Nationals on Wednesday, Sept. 2, at Champps Restaurant and Bar on the
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North side of Indianapolis. They wlll be joined by fellow
NHRA drivers Brandon Bernstein, Larry Dixon, Antron Brown,
Morgan Lucas, Karen Stoffer, Andrew Hines and Eddie
Krawiec for an autograph session from 8-9 p.m.
“This is a wonderful opportunity to interact with the fans
without the restraint of working on cars between rounds and
all of the other distractions we face at the race track," said
Beckman, driver of the Valvoline/Mail Terminal Services
Dodge Funny Car. "We’ll have time to talk with them, sign
autographs, whatever they want. It’s fun to hang out with the
other drivers in a loose environment that promotes our sport.”
In addition to the autograph session, the event will feature
live music, door prizes, and free-ticket contests. It will be
held 7-9 p.m. at Champps Restaurant & Bar, 8711 River
Crossing Blvd. (off 86th St.), Indianapolis, IN 46240.
[9/2/2009]
‘MAIL FROM HOME’ GOAL ALMOST REACHED
Mail Terminal Services continues to close in on its goal of 125,000 post
cards being sent in one season to U.S. troops in war zones overseas
through its Mail From Home program promoted at each NHRA Full
Throttle Drag Racing Series event.
With 17 events of the 24 scheduled this season completed, MTS can
now boast that it has shipped 83,000 cards, signed by fans and MTS
employees during each NHRA event so far. The prestigious U.S.
Nationals in Indianapolis on Labor Day weekend is expected to produce over 7,000 cards. Expectations are high
that the program will reach its 125,000 goal by the completion of the 2009 NHRA series.
As part of its support of Jack Beckman, driver of the Valvoline/Mail Terminal Services Dodge Funny Car for Don
Schumacher Racing, MTS has set several internal challenges and incentives for individuals and terminals that
meet and/or exceed the 7,500 post cards collected for the Mail From Home program at each event.
The Mail From Home program resulted in the shipping of 90,000 cards in 2007 and 105,000 in 2008.
Fans who are unable to visit the NHRA events but would like to participate in the Mail From Home program and
send a Mail From Home package to a specific soldier, should send the soldier's APO mailing address to
[email protected] . (Les Welch photo) [9/2/2009]
Mopar Memos - MoparMax.com
Volume NEWS, Issue
August 27, 2009
FAST & FURIOUS BIDDING
Few recent movie cars have gained the fame of the evil-looking black 1970 Dodge Charger driven by actor Vin
Diesel in the smash hit "Fast and Furious", which was so successful that it has spawned an entire franchise in
collectible movie cars.
The Fast and Furious car was just sold at Mecum's Monterey Auction. The hammer price was $200,000.
That famous black Charger was completely restored by its original builder, Cinema Vehicle Services, and came to
the auction block in full high-performance specification with an impressive list of equipment. Under its gleaming
black bodywork is a pro-built 528 cubic inch Chrysler Hemi with aluminum Indy competition cylinder heads, a TBS
supercharger fed by F.A.S.T. electronic fuel injection and an N.O.S. 250 HP plate nitrous injection system. Rated
at 950 base HP, the huge Hemi develops over 1,100 on the bottle. A race-prepared TCI 727 Torqueflite automatic
transmission and Strange 3.73 "Locker" rear end put all that power to the ground, with Wilwood four-wheel disc
brakes ready to bring it to a sure stop. (photo courtesy Mecum Auctions) [8/27/2009]
PRESS LEAVING CHRYSLER
Chrysler Group Deputy CEO Jim Press is planning to leave the company before the end of the year, The Wall
Street Journal reported Friday, Aug. 21, citing three people who have been informed of the plan.
Press, 62, is expected to leave before December, one of the
Journal's sources said. Chrysler spokesman Gualberto
Ranieri declined to comment on the paper's report. Press,
who spent 37 years at Toyota Motor Corp. and eventually led
its U.S. sales operation, joined Chrysler in 2007 after it was
purchased by Cerberus Capital Management. [8/27/2009]
ADVERTISEMENT
BRISTOL TO HOST MOPAR THUNDER
SEPT. 4-6
Mopar mania invades Thunder Valley (Bristol Dragway in
Bristol, Tenn.) when the Tenth Annual Thompson Metal
Mopar Thunder heads to town on September 4-6. Returning
to Thunder Valley is the always-exciting Mopar vs. The
World. This special event takes place on Friday night and
pits some of the fastest Mopars against all comers.
A Mopar car show will fill the Dragway grounds and offer fans a chance to view some of their favorites from years
ago. A visit to the swap meet and Manufacturers' Midway will give spectators and participants the opportunity to
purchase the hard-to-find items. Tickets are $10 on Friday, $20 on Saturday and Sunday, with a weekend pass
available for $35. Children 10 and under are free. We’ll have coverage of the event later in Mopar Max. [8/27/2009]
Mopar Memos - MoparMax.com
Volume NEWS, Issue
August 27, 2009
GOOD NEWS, BAD NEWS FOR PRO STOCK DRIVERS AT READING
Uncharacteristically, Allen Johnson did not qualify for the Maple Grove field.
J&J Racing NHRA Full Throttle Pro Stock teammates Allen Johnson (left) and Johnny Gray (right) had two drastically different outings at the Toyo Tires
NHRA Nationals in Reading, Pa. Johnson, driver of the Mopar/J&J Racing Dodge Stratus R/T, saw his 61-race qualifying streak come to an end on
Saturday, Aug. 22, at Reading, while Gray drove his Mopar HEMI-powered car to a first-ever Pro Stock runner-up finish on Sunday, Aug. 23, at Maple
ADVERTISEMENT
Grove Raceway.
Rain shortened the qualifying
sessions on Friday and Saturday,
allowing Johnson only two shots at
cracking the field at Reading. The
Team Mopar driver was unable to get
down the strip on his two passes,
ending a qualifying streak that dated
back to the 2007 Gainesville event.
Despite missing Sunday eliminations,
Johnson remains fifth in the NHRA
Pro Stock standings and has already
clinched his spot in the NHRA
Countdown to 1 playoffs.
Water seepage on the track also
caused delays during Sunday
eliminations, but Gray was able to
overcome any difficulties presented by Mother Nature. He advanced to his first Pro Stock final, besting Rodger Brogdon, Greg Anderson, and Kurt
Johnson before losing to Jeg Coughlin. Gray picked the perfect time for his first finals appearance, as he continues to battle Warren Johnson for the
10th and final spot in the Countdown to 1 playoffs. Gray now trails Warren Johnson by just nine markers. (Todd Dziadosz photos) [8/27/2009]
NMCA OFFERS FREE TICKETS FOR MILAN EVENT
The National Muscle Car Association is offering free tickets for their 3rd Annual JE Pistons NMCA Muscle Car Nationals at Milan Dragway in Milan,
Mich., on August 28-30.
Click here for your FREE 1-Day Spectator Ticket.
The event will feature heads-up drag racing: Ford vs. Chevy vs. Mopar, a car show, midway and swap meet, 300+ MPH Jet Car and more. You may
print as many tickets as you’d like.
Looks like the ADRL model is spreading. And remember, August is Motorsports Awareness Month, so take a friend to a race before the month is over!
[8/27/2009]
Mopar Memos - MoparMax.com
Volume NEWS, Issue
August 27, 2009
SEBRING, AVENGER EARN TOP SAFETY PICK RATING
Chrysler Group LLC announced Aug. 25 that the 2010 Chrysler Sebring and 2010 Dodge Avenger have earned the 2009 Top Safety Pick rating from
the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS).
“We are proud to receive the highest possible ratings from IIHS for the Chrysler Sebring and Dodge Avenger,” said Scott Kunselman, Senior Vice
President – Engineering, Chrysler Group LLC. “These sought-after achievements highlight Chrysler’s leadership in safety and security technology and
occupant protection.”
When it comes to safety and security, the 2010 Chrysler Sebring and 2010 Dodge Avenger employ a two-fold approach: passive features, including
pre-tensioning seat belt retractors and supplemental side-curtain air bags, are combined with accident-avoidance features, including responsive
steering, braking, handling and Electronic Stability Control (ESC).
“A vehicle that earns the Top Safety Pick designation provides the best overall protection in the three most common kinds of crashes,” said Adrian Lund,
President – Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. “Top-level crash-test performance plus electronic stability control to help keep drivers out of crashes
are the tough criteria needed to earn this award.”
Available safety equipment on the 2010 Chrysler Sebring and Dodge Avenger includes ESC with traction control, Brake Assist and ABS, driver and
front-passenger active head restraints, front seat-mounted side airbags and advanced multi-stage front airbags. The two vehicles also are equipped
with Lower Anchors and Tethers for CHildren (LATCH) for child safety seats. [8/27/2009]
GOODYEAR TO MAKE DRAG RADIAL TIRES
Goodyear Racing announced Aug. 18 that the company is ready to begin manufacturing the latest additions to its line of Goodyear Eagle SS DOT radial
drag racing tires. Goodyear recently completed both eighth-mile and quarter-mile tests at South Georgia Motorsports Park and Arizona’s Firebird
International Raceway with 16 cars and drivers testing tires sizes and construction combinations for the DOT drag racing market.
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“The tests were extremely successful,” said Carolyn Ashbee, sales account manager
for drag racing. “We know now that we have a very competitive product….”
The first size tire to be released will be the Goodyear D4305. It is sized at 275/60R15
which is 28 inches tall with a 9.5 tread width and recommended for eight inch wide
wheels. Eight additional sizes for 15-, 16- and 17-inch rims are in development. The
drivers involved in the tests came from across the radial racing world, from
organizations such as the Outlaw Radial Street Car Association, the Outlaw Radial
Tire Championship, the National Mustang Racing Association and the Pacific Street
Car Association. Drivers made quarter-mile and eighth-mile passes.
“This is a terrific market, one that has been growing and has room for more growth,”
Ashbee said. “The tires will be built at our Innovation Center in Akron, Ohio, and we
expect to have them ready for sale by the Fall.” [8/27/2009]
OLD-TIME AD FOR KC MUSCLE CAR REUNION
Here’s the ad running on Kansas City television stations promoting the Muscle Car
Reunion and Nostalgia Drags on Sept. 11-13. Ah, it just takes us back to the 1960s
and ‘70s. Hey, isn’t that the point of nostalgia? [8/27/2009]
CHRYSLER, NISSAN END PLANS TO SHARE VEHICLES
Chrysler Group, whose new Italian partner, Fiat S.p.A., is preparing to supply
Chrysler dealers with European-designed small cars, on Aug. 26 scrapped plans to
share vehicles with Nissan Motor Co.
The announcement comes on the heels of press speculation that Fiat soon will begin
putting a version of its compact Fiat 500 into production in North America for Chrysler
Group dealers. That would bolster Chrysler's lineup in a market that has shifted from
large vehicles, where Chrysler has excelled in the past, to more fuel-efficient small
cars, where the automaker has been weak. The projects had involved: 1. Nissan providing to Chrysler a compact sedan for the South American market
beginning this year; 2. Nissan providing to Chrysler a small vehicle for global markets beginning in 2010; 3. Chrysler providing to Nissan a full-size
pickup truck starting in 2011. [8/27/2009]
Mopar Memos - MoparMax.com
Volume IV, Issue 9
September 2, 2009
Moseying our way to Bonneville
(Ethel Johnson photo)
thel and I got off to a late start in Nono. We originally planned to head for
the salt earlier but the allure of Mark Eitzel singing, accompanied by Marc
Capelle on piano, at a legendary San Francisco underground nightspot was
too great for even the Bonneville Salt Flats. The show was fantastic, by the way, and
the evening’s debauch set the tone for the entire trip. Not that we stayed completely
sauced or anything, but we knew that this trip was not going to be rushed. Our theme
this year was “on the mosey.”
We headed out late in the morning through intense central valley heat and smog,
crept out, up and over the Sierra. Nono was acting funny and would not cool down so
55-mph upgrade speeds were mandatory. It turned out that the cool-as-heck antique
Mopar radiator cap I had on her had truly become an antique, letting off pressure and
thusly nearly a gallon of water exited as vapor. Oooops.
No problem. The very reason the floors in the back of Nono are invisible is because of
the vast amount of junk I keep back there. The stuff not only wards off thieves who
think the car is full of garbage, but it serves as a spare parts depot as well. This time it coughed up a perfectly
good 15-lb. Stant lever action radiator cap and we were on the move. For the duration of the trip, Nono managed
a respectable 20 mg on the highway at an average speed of 75 mph. Not bad for the same old junk-pile Holley I
bolted on straight out of the can about three months ago.
Once we made it to the salt on Monday morning we found the meet had wound down considerably. Not only that,
but there wasn't much Mopar in attendance and the ones that were there broke before we arrived. There are
always plenty of Hemis in Fords and a smattering of pick ‘em up trucks that run hard, but they just don’t get my
blood moving like Lee Sicilio’s Daytona or Jim Snyder’s Salty Cuda. What’s a Mopar fan to do?
Basement Garage - Moseying our way to Bonneville - Page 1 of 4 - MoparMax.com
Volume IV, Issue 9
September 3, 2009
Lee Sicilio's record holding 1969 Daytona lived up to what its graphics suggest. Typically laconic crew member told me the new motor "broke".
Salty Cuda ran its Hemi past 200 mph and burned up a piston in the process. Groovy ductwork in airdam goes straight to the driver's you know what. (Ethel Johnson photo)
Basement Garage - Moseying our way to Bonneville - Page 2 of 4 - MoparMax.com
Volume IV, Issue 9
September 3, 2009
Well, you head over to Pete “Pedro” Hendrickson’s “Montana Dodge Boys” pit and check out the hugely successful “Fast Four Special” 1928 Dodge
roadster. With a snappy new paint job, dual Harley drag race Mikunis, some Pedro-built headers, smart assed tuning –– and commentary –– the little
roadster has become the one to beat in multiple classes. Heck, with some very kindly “donated” sheet metal they gave the car a nose job and got into
Gas Modified Roadster but fell short of that record.
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The Fast Four Special with Pete "Pedro" Hendrickson at the wheel at sunrise. Record return run.
For your fact sheet, here is what the car did earn: two bumps on the previous V4F/STR record of
111.477 on up to 114.157 and then 115.681 with Pete at the wheel. With Chris King on the pedal in
Gas Roadster, the Fast Four bumped the former record from 110.609 to 116.439, and finally with
Tony Smith sailing smooth and straight the little Dodge ate up the Fuel Roadster record of 109.836
with a 117.597. Keep thinking, “flat head four cylinder, no blower, no nitrous, no nitro, no alcohol…
wtf?!?!” I asked Pete how the new set-up felt and he said it was a bog-free milk run right out the back
door. Nice work, boys.
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The good news posted on the fast four trailer.
Basement Garage - Moseying our way to Bonneville - Page 3 of 4 - MoparMax.com
Volume IV, Issue 9
ADVERTISEMENT
September 3, 2009
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As always, Bonneville is a treat. Nowhere else in the world can you watch a 400-mph car run across the curvature
of the earth, garner a bank vault’s worth of tuning wisdom over pancakes, take a mid-afternoon nap to the sound
of nitro cackle, pay 200 bucks for a room on Saturday and then 50 for the same one on Wednesday, watch all
manner of four cylinder foolery, 250-mph motorcycles, and see some of the most incredible sunburns on the
planet while making long lasting friendships.
I want to thank our faithful media liaison, JoAnn Carlson and the
entire SCTA-BNI crew for putting together another fantastic
meet.
See you next year!
Basement Garage - Moseying our way to Bonneville - Page 4 of 4 - MoparMax.com
Volume IV, Issue 9
September 2, 2009
Fixin’ It Up
was at a car show recently with my three owner ’54 Plymouth Savoy when a guy walked up and asked
me “so you gonna fix it up?” I turned to face the 40,000 original mile car – still wearing much of its factory
applied paint – and said: “Naah, I think I’ll just keep fixing it down.” I wasn’t trying to be a wise ass with
this well meaning stranger so I asked him what changes he thought the car should have to make it more
“up”.
He took a closer look and noted the manual four wheel drum brakes, radio delete plate, column shifted three
speed manual transmission and 217 cube flathead six cylinder engine. His recommendations were as follows;
Replace the front drums with disc brakes (I looked into this and there is a conversion kit listed on eBay that uses
late model GM disc brake parts), install a killer CD changer with surround sound speakers, swap to an automatic
and yank the flathead six popper in favor of a V8. When I asked him which V8 he’d choose he said: “Go for a
Chevy 350, they’re so cheap”.
Needless to say, I bit my tongue through much of the remaining conversation but I did my best to set him straight
(at least in my eyes) to the fact that any car that’s been unmolested for over 50 years deserves to be left alone.
Okay, I’ll admit I’d be the first to break that rule if a sanitary 1965 Coronet 2 door sedan materialized in my
driveway. It’d be an A990 Race Hemi clone in no
time (cash funds allowing). But to squander any
surviving automotive relic with such a slipshod
and random plan as this guy proposed would be a
crime.
At the conclusion of the show, I was driving the
old Savoy home watching the odometer get ready
to roll around to 41,000 miles for the first time.
During the ride I asked myself; “Okay Steve, what
modifications could you justify on this particular
car?” Since I’ve always been a little bit different
than the rest of the kids on the school bus my
mind flashed through several pipe dream
scenarios. The first was a Viper V10 engine,
transmission and suspension swap. I know famed
hot rodder and customizer Troy Trepanier
( www.radridesbytroy ) did something similar about a decade ago. Remember his Viper-infused ’54 Plymouth
Sniper? It rocked. But my Savoy is a 4 door so much of the sporty vibe would be lost on its frumpy body style.
How about a straight axle gasser? I’d go with an early Chrysler Firepower Hemi, Wilcap 5-speed Tremec
transmission adapter and stick a properly narrowed Dodge A100 van front axle under the nose. But again, the 4
door body style stymied any further dreams. The vision of any 4 door gasser (with the exception of a handful of
Willys and Anglias) is diametrically opposed to the wild and wooly Gasser theme – at least in my book.
Over and over, my common sense rejected these and other bastardized and misguided visions for the pure
Plymouth I was wheeling home that night. Then it hit me. From a historical standpoint, 1954 was the final year for
a rather frumpy post WWII styling cycle all across the board at Chrysler.Under the conservative corporate direction
of Kaufman Thuma (KT) Keller, postwar styling advances being pioneered by GM and Ford (wrap around
windshields, smooth body sides, hardtop styling, etc.) were seen as “gimmicks”. Instead, KT forged a path based
on what he felt was superior engineering. All 1949 – 1954 Chrysler Corporation products featured an unusually tall
roofline compared to the mainstream competition. KT was often quoted as saying: “Our cars won’t knock your eyes
out, but they won’t knock the hat off your head either”. Yes, KT was a hat man.
Steve Mags Speaks - Fixin' It Up - Page 1 of 2 - MoparMax.com
Volume IV, Issue 9
September 3, 2009
But the winds of change were blowing. In August of 1949 one Virgil Exner was hired to run the newly formed Advanced Styling Studio (for a reported
$25,000 per annum) and by 1955, KT Keller had been replaced by Tex Colbert as company president. For the 1955 model year, all Chrysler Corp.
vehicles (Plymouth, Dodge, DeSoto, Chrysler, Imperial) were based on much sleeker body shells complete with slab-side styling, wrap around glass,
available three-tone paintwork and the first hint of fins. Virgil Exner’s Forward Look had arrived and virtually overnight, Chrysler was in the previously
unimaginable position of leading the Detroit styling trends of the day. GM and Ford were taken by surprise as sales of all Chrysler Corp. vehicles
strongly rebounded from a nasty slump.
All of which placed my ’54 Savoy at the end – and beginning - of a new era. Not only was it the final model exhibiting KT Keller’s utilitarian styling vision,
it was also the final year Plymouth was sold only with a six cylinder engine. That’s right, along with the 1955 Exner restyle came Plymouth’s first
optional V8 power plant and a new emphasis on high performance. Initially know as the A388, it was supplied by Dodge. No, this new Plymouth V8
wasn’t the same Red Ram Hemi offered in Dodge cars since 1953. Rather it was a de-contented single rocker shaft engine that was shared with lowline Dodge models. Replacing the double rocker shaft Hemispherical heads with polyspherical-type heads was a cost-cutting measure. Still marketed in
Dodge vehicles as the Red Ram, it measured 270 cubes while the similar versions provided to Plymouth were called the Hy-Fire and measured 241
and 259 cubes out of respect for Plymouth’s lower ranking on the marketing hierarchy than Dodge (Plymouth wouldn’t get a Hemi until the 1964 arrival
of the famed 426. Pre-1964, it was polys and wedges all the way).
These Dodge-sourced polyspherical V8’s were used in all V8 equipped 1955 Plymouths. But with the 1956 model year came the A479, Plymouth’s first
home-grown V8 engine. Produced in the all new Mound Road engine plant (officially dubbed the “Plymouth Quali-Matic V-8 Engine Plant”), these new
V8s featured 4.46 inch bore spacing, a figure that would eventually be shared with later 273, 318, 340 and 360 small blocks in later years. The roots of
the legendary A / LA engine family had been sown!
The new-for-1956 Plymouth A479 had bore / stroke dimensions of 3.75 x 3.125 and displaced 276 cubic inches (often bumped to 277 in advertising).
Offered with 2 barrel (187 hp / 265 lb-ft) or 4 barrel induction (200 hp / 270 lb-ft) this optional V8 was an effective counter to the new OHV V8’s
introduced by Chevrolet and Ford in the low-price field. Interestingly, a second variant of the new A engine was built at the Windsor, Ontario engine
plant under control of Chrysler Canada. It displaced 303 cubic inches (3.812 bore x 3.3125 stroke) and was available stateside with 4 barrel carburetion
and 240 hp and a whopping 310 lb-ft. Suddenly the sight of a “lowly” Plymouth burning rubber away from a stop light wasn’t a joke.
All of this got me to thinking as I motored along quietly in the Savoy that night.
Its 217 cube straight six had been introduced waaay back in 1933 and had a
lengthy production run that ran right through the 1959 model year – when it
was finally put to rest to make way for the mighty Slant Six. Make no mistake,
its 100 hp was doing a fine job of moving the big Savoy, but I got excited
imagining what a night and day difference the optional 276 and 303 V8’s must
have made back when they were new. Leaping from 100 to a possible 240 hp
must have been a real thrill. Of course to a modern driver, jaded by an
automotive landscape in which the average new car can run 0-to-60 in under 9
seconds and cover the quarter in the 14s, the 14.5 second 0-to-60
acceleration of the 1955 Plymouth V8 tested in the December, 1954 issue of
Motor Life magazine would seem laughable. All the same, it was a big deal at
the time.
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Rolling along, I hatched a plan. How about transforming my ’54 Savoy into a
what-if engineering test car for the soon-to-be-announced Hy-Fire V8 option?
In a perfect world, I’d source a pre-production 276 V8 (All new engine designs
are made in experimental batches for evaluation often years before volume
production commences. You just know there had to be a hundred or more preproduction Hy-Fire V8s built, I’d need one). Then I’d re-fit the car with exotic
Ausco-Lambert four wheel disc brakes from the 1950-1955 Chrysler Imperial
parts bin. There would be no glitz, no bling, just the laboratory-esque vibe of a
Proving Grounds engineering test vehicle. The outward appearance would be
unchanged. But once the hood was lifted, those in the know would be blown
away.
If you’re wondering why not just get a regular production 1955 Plymouth V8 car, you’re missing the point. The allure of my plan is based on the
exclusive nature of not-for-public-consumption factory engineering test vehicles. Make no mistake, each and every new engine type – from the Dodge
Brothers first inline four cylinder engine right up to the modern Gen III Hemi was evaluated in “last year’s” vehicle as a means of gaining real-world
driving data without revealing the latest body styles.
Notable precedents include several 1965 B bodies fitted with 426 Street Hemi drive trains (not A990 Race Hemis) as well as a rumored 1969 Dodge
Coronet that was powered by the still-born A279 Ball Stud 444 semi-Hemi for road testing. Naturally these fascinating aberrations were hand
assembled deep within the tightly secured engineering garages before they were sent out into the real world to “hide in plain sight”.
So what about a 1954 Plymouth Savoy 4 door sedan A479 Hy-Fire V8 development mule? You know a bunch were built back in the day. Truth be told,
this is about the only route that gets my juices flowing when it comes to laying a hand on this otherwise pristine and unspoiled automotive survivor. But
the harsh reality is that any chance of finding pre-production 276 poly-motor goodies (let alone Ausco-Lambert disc brakes) is just about zero. My only
glimpse of pre-production glory came in the form of two aluminum Slant Six cylinder heads that had been secretly removed from Chrysler’s Kokomo, IN
Forge and Foundry Division way back in 1959. To have any luck scoring an experimental 276 engine has as much promise as waiting at the dock for
the HMS Titanic to arrive.
Sooo, I’ll just be content to leave my humble, unassuming ’54 Savoy as-is. But if any of you has a working time
machine set for early 1954, and a few days for an unannounced midnight visit the Chrysler proving grounds (unescorted, thank you), lets do it. Until that scenario unfolds, the Savoy’s purity is safe and secure.
Steve Mags Speaks - Fixin' It Up - Page 2 of 2 - MoparMax.com
Volume IV, Issue 9
September 2, 2009
August Mopar Madness and Being The Boss
Again…
ell, I did it. After being king of the freelancers since early 2002, I took over one of the half-dozen print
titles out there, Mopar Enthusiast , back in July. Most readers probably know a lot more about working on
their cars than the magazine business. The best way to try to explain it is say that you live in a
‘Groundhog Day’ movie on a 30-day cycle. The details may change, but you end up doing a lot of things over and
over again. You write, you edit the other stuff, you read it, the staff reads it, you read it again once the pages are
laid out, the magazine goes to the printer, and you read it one last time before the ink actually hits the paper. And
still stupid stuff sometime manages to slip though the cracks.
So, while we were getting the final touches done for the printer in early August, I was also on my way to the Mopar
Nationals for the first time since leaving Mopar Muscle almost a decade ago. Held at National Trail Raceway east
of Columbus, this is still one of the premier events of the year. The event’s highlight includes the OEM Judging for
the hobby’s finest restorations, hundreds of show cars, dozens of racecars, exhibition run, a big Manufacturers
Midway, and a big swap meet.
My son John was going to get to miss the first two days of high school as a result of this and the following week,
but we had a lot of fun hanging out with the guys from Mancini; cruising to Brice Road and Heath, Ohio; shooting
features, and hearing tall tales. The event was over, but we were just getting started.
On Monday we were at the Amos Automotive offices for some meetings on MPE, and we headed over to
Indianapolis that night to see Ken Lazzari and Russ Flagle at Indy Cylinder Head the next morning. Ken had
pointed out some great new products at the Nats (including the fabulous RHS Indy 360 heads featured in the
product section last month) and we had a chance to look at what was under development.
Despite the economic downturn, the engine hardware business is still pretty good these days. One of the coolest
products was the Mod Man manifold (sorry, Jeff, I’m saving the tech on that one for the January issue of Mopar
Enthusiast), but suffice to say, this recently developed part may be one of the more revolutionary products from
these mad scientists. The Mod Man uses interchangeable tops on a single plane intake, making it possible to
swap from a Six Pack to a big CFM carb to fuel injection by simply changing the plenum cover. The dyno numbers
are impressive.
From Indy it was up to see Greg and Kathy Mosley in Moline, Illinois (whose collection was also covered in Mopar
Max recently). Mosley has some very significant racecars, not the least being the Chi-town Hustler and Hawaiian
fliptop funny cars, Lee Smith’s ’65 altered-wheelbase Plymouth, and a slew of street cars. That took up much of
Wednesday, but by nightfall we headed for Iowa and one last overnight stop before hitting Kearney, Nebraska, for
the Flatlander Fling.
Racecar locator Reed Koeppe had organized the event at what is basically the center of the country (1750 miles
from each coast). Dick Towers, the proprietor of match-race-madness.com, has recently been dealing with some
health issues, and in his honor, collector Mike Guffey of Indiana and Jim Kramer of Pennsylvania brought in the
original 1965 Golden Commandos Plymouth and Honker Dodge, respectively, for this first-ever event. Both cars
were under power for the first time in decades, and were allowed to be started and do a quick 60-foot launch early
in the day. On one pass, Towers, who had owned the Commandos car for over 20 years before Guffey purchased
and had it restored by Eric Lindberg, was in the passenger seat of the very valuable car. The chance of the two
vehicles being under power side-by-side on a race track ever again will likely not happen.
Mopar Musings - August Mopar Madness and Being The Boss Again... - Page 1 of 10 - MoparMax.com
Volume IV, Issue 9
September 3, 2009
Koeppe hosted cars at his shop on Friday and opened his doors to display some of his recent acquisitions. Noted for his willingness to aggressively
search out rarities, among the cars on hand were a documented 1970-71 Sox & Martin 340 Duster that ran in IHRA, two Hemi Colts, and Scott
Harvey’s off-road four-wheel-drove Dodge Aspen (no, we did not know about that one before we saw it, either). Reed buys and sells a lot of rarities,
though his own pride and joy at the moment is the original Sox & Martin Jet X Omni from the early 1980s. See www.reedsperformance.com for more
info.
We got a big kick at some of the other cars at the Flatlander event, held on the historical confines of Kearney Raceway Park outside of Kearney, which
is paved onto a huge concrete bombing range and airfield that dates from World War II (the track opened in 1964). Hank Taylor’s two 1964 cars – Max
Wedge and Hemi - were on hand thanks to Len Grimsley (as was the “Texas teen terror” Taylor himself, who retired from driving in 1965). Clark Rand
and Fred Engelhart debuted their just-located Barracuda gasser, still in former owner Fred Hurst’s gold-leaf and candy-apple paint. Lindberg and Fast
Eddie Weldon had original Hurst-built Darts, and Brad Harm brought in Lee Smith’s 426 Hemi powered 1967 Whackee Wagon Belvedere.
The final push on Sunday after saying our goodbyes brought us back to New Albany, Indiana, and we finished up the final day, Monday, here in
Tennessee. And I get to write some more, read some more, and hope I can make ‘Groundhog Day’ a little more palatable. See you at the races, sooner
or later…
10 DAYS ON THE ROAD – PHOTOS BY JOHN STUNKARD UNLESS NOTED
It is 7 a.m. and cars are arriving at the Mopar Nationals on old US 40, the National Trail for which the track is named.
Mancini Racing and Modern Muscle stayed busy tweaking cars on the portable chassis dyno; here is a new Challenger getting a test tune.
Mopar Musings - August Mopar Madness and Being The Boss Again... - Page 2 of 10 - MoparMax.com
Volume IV, Issue 9
September 3, 2009
Playing with light using Dave and Michelle Hakim’s worked Daytona Charger R/T. Hakim has landed at Mancini after several years with Mopar
Performance / Direct Connection.
Cruising action on Friday night at perhaps the most notorious intersection in Columbus, Ohio during the Mopar Nats.
Mopar Musings - August Mopar Madness and Being The Boss Again... - Page 3 of 10 - MoparMax.com
Volume IV, Issue 9
September 3, 2009
Saturday, the same street action was hot up in Heath, about 10 miles northeast of the dragstrip.
Neal and Janice Thomas and their Mopars were part of the great people who spent the weekend in Columbus; the couple lives in nearby Pickerington.
Mopar Musings - August Mopar Madness and Being The Boss Again... - Page 4 of 10 - MoparMax.com
Volume IV, Issue 9
September 3, 2009
Riding in the back of a pick-up truck down I-70 to shoot action photos of the outrageous new 1970 Charger just completed by Best of Show Automotive.
The car is powered by a work RB wedge.
Indy’s new Mod Man intake; the base (for a Hemi in this instance) is identical; the tops are easily swapped for any possible carb configuration.
Stunkard photo)
Mopar Musings - August Mopar Madness and Being The Boss Again... - Page 5 of 10 - MoparMax.com
(Geoff
Volume IV, Issue 9
September 3, 2009
Deep in the shop at Indy, work is progressing on the prototype patterns for the next Mod Man intake that will work
in LA-series and Magnum small-block applications. (Geoff Stunkard photo)
Mopar Musings - August Mopar Madness and Being The Boss Again... - Page 6 of 10 - MoparMax.com
Volume IV, Issue 9
September 3, 2009
Greg Mosley’s two Chi-town Hustlers; the one in the foreground is the original that is credited with inventing the
smoky burnout, while the one in the background is a tribute that will be used for exhibition racing in 2010. (Geoff
Stunkard photo)
Keeping Mr. Mosley busy – getting the original injectors on the factory-built Lee Smith Plymouth lit after a late
afternoon photo session. Mosley also has a just-finished tribute that looks like Butch Leal’s now-destroyed 1965
model, but it has stacked EFI Hilborns that will make this scene with the squirt bottom much less common.
(Geoff Stunkard photo)
Mopar Musings - August Mopar Madness and Being The Boss Again... - Page 7 of 10 - MoparMax.com
Volume IV, Issue 9
September 3, 2009
Oh, Kathy Mosley’s ride? How about this blown ’70 GTX. Yeah, it’s got a Hemi…
In one of Reed Koeppe’s storage warehouses in Kearney, Neb., is the one-off Scott Harvey off-road Dodge Aspen. The four-wheel-drive beast used an
Olds Toronado transaxle and a very unique all-aluminum small-block. (Geoff Stunkard photo)
Mopar Musings - August Mopar Madness and Being The Boss Again... - Page 8 of 10 - MoparMax.com
Volume IV, Issue 9
September 3, 2009
A row of cars at the Flatlander Fling; up front is the just-located 1970 Barracuda gasser once campaigned by Fred
Hurst and still wearing its original paint.
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Mopar Musings - August Mopar Madness and Being The Boss Again... - Page 9 of 10 - MoparMax.com
Volume IV, Issue 9
September 3, 2009
Hank Taylor (center) was reunited with both of his 1964 cars for the first time in decades; owner Len Grimsley is to the far left. The Max Wedge (left)
spent years on the street and was simply relettered after Grimley located it quite accidentally in California last year.
The highlight for a lot of people in attendance during the pre-event opening was this side-by-side 60-foot blast
between the Honker and Golden Commandos cars, two of the 11 hardtops created by Chrysler in 1965. (Geoff
Stunkard photo).
Mopar Musings - August Mopar Madness and Being The Boss Again... - Page 10 of 10 - MoparMax.com
Volume IV, Issue 9
September 2, 2009
“It seems like in
this car you are
never going to get
to the finish line.”
Words and photos by Jeff Burk
The last time Don Garlits drove anything in competition
that didn’t use a supercharged Hemi for power was
1963 when he drove a White Challenger with a 426ci
Mopar wedge motor under the hood with a cross ram
intake, topped with a couple of carbs.
Since then Garlits went on to be named the greatest
NHRA driver of all time mostly on the strength of his
record behind the wheel of a front- or rear-motored
Top Fuel dragster.
Forty years after competing in the ‘63 season with his Dodge “Max Wedge” doorslammer, Garlits retired from the
business of driving a race car immediately after the 2003 U.S. Nationals when he parked his latest nitro-burning
“Swamp Rat.”
Fast forward to the fall of 2009 and yet another Gartlits-driven “Swamp Rat” but this one is something different.
This 35th race car to carry the Swamp Rat name is a factor- built 2009 “Drag Pak” Dodge Challenger powered by
a fuel-injected, gasoline-burning engine built using Mopar’s 6.1 liter (370 ci) Mopar Hemi parts including a pair of
the “new” Mopar Hemi heads.
Don Garlits returns to drag racing with a new Dodge Challenger - Page 1 of 5 - MoparMax.com
Volume IV, Issue 9
September 3, 2009
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Although Garlits had driven a similar type car during the Mopar Mile High Nationals last year, that
wasn’t the car he drove for the first time ever at historic Cordova Dragway Park on Friday, August 28,
during the 56th annual World Series of Drag Racing. That was the day that Don Garlits got behind
the wheel of the serial number 001 Drag Pak Challenger and booted it to a 10.62/126+ lap.
He then made several more laps in the car over the next four days, eventually getting the wide
bodied Challenger into the mid-10.40 second range and near 130 mph.
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We were at the World Series and got the opportunity to spend a little time with “Big Daddy” and talk
about his transition into driving a 10-second door car after driving a nitro-burning dragster that ran a quarter mile in around four seconds at speeds over
330 mph.
Asked how he likes driving this car compared to driving his old ‘62 Max Wedge “crossram” stocker, Garlits replied, “Well, for one thing the new car is a
much quicker and faster car than my old Max Wedge car. I never got that car to break into the elevens. Low 12’s was the quickest it ever ran”
.
How does he like driving this compared to driving the dragster? “Well,” he answered, “for one thing it’s like the lap is never going to end. In the dragster
it took around three seconds to get to half-track and about a second to run the back half. In this car it seems like you are never going to get to the finish
line.”
Don Garlits returns to drag racing with a new Dodge Challenger - Page 2 of 5 - MoparMax.com
Volume IV, Issue 9
September 3, 2009
"I like my Dodge Challenger Drag Pak much better than a dragster," continued Garlits, referring to the current way
Top Fuel dragsters are campaigned. "It takes 25 people to get a dragster to the line these days. All I have to do
with the Dodge Challenger is turn the key and take it there. When the light turns green I have a 10-second ride —
which is almost three times what I used to get — and I even have time to look at the tach and shift gears. The
other thing I like about it is that I get a lot of seat time on every pass.”
Garlits is going to debut the car as an
NHRA A/SA car at the U.S. Nationals
and will try to qualify for the field. The
current index for A/SA is 11.30. Judging
what it takes to qualify for the U.S.
Nationals in the Stock Eliminator
division, Garlits should qualify but
probably not in the top half of the field if
his new Mopar runs in the 10.40 range
at Indy.
And we’ll bet the idea of sandbagging -“ripping” the throttle and allowing the
driver in the other lane to “take the
stripe” which is so prevalent in Stock
Eliminator and bracket racing -- is
something that Garlits may never
understand or do. The “Old Man” has
always raced with the right pedal on the
mat ‘till he crossed the stripe, God bless
him, and he isn’t likely to change at this
phase of his career as a driver.
Former Mopar engineer John Donato
was the lead designer of the Challenger
Drag Pak car and designed and built it
at the Mopar Canadian plant where the
first 50 factory Drag Pak cars were
supposed to be built. He is also tuning
the car that Garlits is driving although
he is no longer employed by the new
Chrysler company. Here he checks the
fuel injection and timing curve for the
EFI injected 6.1 liter Hemi.
The wheelbase on Garlits Challenger is 115.5 inches, which is half an inch shorter than factory stock. The rear
wheels have been moved forward a half-inch to get the weight more evenly balanced between the front and rear of
the car, Donato said. The whole rear-end assembly on Drag Pak cars are moved 2.5 inches further forward than
they come in stock form.
Don Garlits returns to drag racing with a new Dodge Challenger - Page 3 of 5 - MoparMax.com
Volume IV, Issue 9
September 3, 2009
Since this car competes in NHRA’s
Stock division Donato had to utilize
a rear-end. assembly manufactured
by Chrysler under the Drag Pak car.
He opted for the rear-end assembly
made for the company’s Jeep
Grand Cherokee. It was approved
for use by the NHRA. The shocks
and springs Donato uses on all four
corners are manufactured by the
AFCO folks. The rear gear ratio they
are using right now is 4.56 which is
coupled to a 904 Chrysler threespeed Automatic with a 2.74 low
gear.
For Indy Donato is changing the
converter and the headers. “Our
headers we tested at Cordova had
too big of tubing. We are going to
install headers made of 1-7/8 tube
and a converter that will allow us to
shift the motor at 5000/5300 rpm,”
he told us.
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John Donato estimates the engine in Garlits’ Challenger makes 610/620 hp and 460 ft-lbs of
torque. It has a single Holley 1000 cfm throttle body. The engine mounts for the Drag Pak cars are
placed so that the engine is located 19mm right and 75mm back of stock location.
Don Garlits returns to drag racing with a new Dodge Challenger - Page 4 of 5 - MoparMax.com
Volume IV, Issue 9
September 3, 2009
Check out the honeycomb structure (below) in the
front end of the Drag Pak Dodge.
According to John Donato the Drag Pak car sits
considerably lower than a stock Challenger.
Don Garlits returns to drag racing with a new Dodge Challenger - Page 5 of 5 - MoparMax.com
Volume IV, Issue 9
September 2, 2009
Project Fighting Fish
Going to Finish
Words and photos by Darr Hawthorne
Well it’s been sitting or maybe that’s perching on the rotisserie for the better part of a year, but without much
fanfare Project Fighting Fish will be coming out from under the submerged rock very soon.
With project vehicles, a larger bite
is sometimes taken than had been
originally planned; such was the
case the Project Fighting Fish ’65
Barracuda. We had never
anticipated a full frame-in-the-air
rebuild for this A-body, however the
original intent of the project is still
very much in focus, build a cool,
sleek, vintage Mopar road racer.
Since starting this project some
things have changed, owner Zak
Hawthorne has parked his dirt sprint car effort for now, to concentrate on his business.
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Along the way we built a bitchen stroker 410 cubic inch Mopar
small block with an Isky cam and lifters, sporting Edelbrock portmatched and massaged aluminum heads with Eagle rods and
crank and JE pistons, a deep sump Milodon pan and pump, all
zapped by a Pertronix Igniter. On the Westech Dyno the results
were bitchen too, when the 410 netted 470.7 pound feet of torque
and 442.1 peak horsepower at 5400 RPM with a 750 Holley and
polished Weiand high-rise and Mancini sheet metal valve covers.
We’ll be mating all this to one of Jaime Passion’s cool, reworked
A-833 four speeds, an old Mopar friend sold us a period OEM
Hurst Competition Plus shifter that’s currently being re-worked,
re-plated and rebuilt by Hurst. Hooking it up the engine to the
rear, we used a McLeod clutch and flywheel assembly.
On the inside we still need to install a full S&W Racecars 10-point
roll cage, with the safety harness from Taylor Motorsports
Products, we’ll sit on Sparco Seats and get instrumentation from
an MSD Digital Dash. Underneath we’ve already shown you the 8
¾ Mopar rear end build from Sutton Engineering with Moser axles
and Wilwood disc brakes. We’ll also be replacing the stock
torsion bars with beefier ones from Mancini Racing. In the trunk
we’ll be adding a recessed, fire-safe fuel cell.
While
Project
Fighting Fish is still on the rotisserie, it’s time to change
out the rusted rear quarter panels behind the wheel wells,
installing really nice stamped steel patch panels we
bought from Layson’s. Under the front wheel wells goes
the full Firm Feel tubular front suspension and quick ratio
steering box, we’ve already welded up the K-member and
had it covered with black powder coating.
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Still on the to-do list is finishing the “smoothing” of the Cuda, the long chrome strips along the top of the rear
fenders have been removed and filled in, the old drip rails are gone so some welding will make it look smoother.
No worries, the door handles will remain since we wouldn’t pass tech inspection at most racing venues if that was
smoothed.
Project Fighting Fish - Page 1 of 2 - MoparMax.com
Volume IV, Issue 9
September 3, 2009
In the end
Project Fighting
Fish will ride on a
set of American
Racing Torque
Thrust wheels
and at this time
we anticipate
using 18-inch
Goodrich g-Force
T/A KDW tires.
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So as we get
ready to load
Project Fighting
Fish onto the
flatbed this month, rotisserie and all, you’ll be able to follow the
progress here in Mopar Max. To see where we’ve been with this
project check out our previous stories at these links.
http://www.moparmax.com/tech/2007/ii_7-cuda-1.html
http://www.moparmax.com/tech/2007/ii_10-cuda-1.html
http://www.moparmax.com/tech/2008/iii_7-fightingfish-1.html
http://www.moparmax.com/tech/2008/iii_4-fightingfish-1.html
http://www.moparmax.com/tech/2008/iii_2-cuda-1.html
http://www.moparmax.com/tech/2007/ii_12-cuda-1.html
http://www.moparmax.com/tech/2008/iii_3-cuda-1.html
Project Fighting Fish - Page 2 of 2 - MoparMax.com
Volume IV, Issue 9
September 2, 2009
The Hot Rod Magazine Drag Race of June
1964
By Pete Haldiman
For the past several months
Hot Rod magazine has been
promoting the “Return of The
Hot Rod Drags. ” For you
youngsters it should be
explained that the original drag
races sponsored by Hot Rod
were from 1964 to 1970. The
first one in 1964 was somewhat
noteworthy for those of the
Hemi persuasion and deserves
a little explanation and some
comments.
(file photo by Bob Plummer)
Hot Rod decided to sponsor
their first drag race on the
weekend of June 12-14, 1964,
at nearby Riverside Raceway. Because of Wally Parks, Hot Rod and the NHRA had ties going way back so it was
the NHRA that was selected to sanction and run the races. As it turned out, the event was somewhat of a
milestone in that it featured a new kid on the block, the 426 Hemi. On that June weekend the NHRA and Riverside
ranked in stature with NASCAR and Daytona.
A little history refresher is needed. The first 426 Hemi ran
under its own power in December 1963 and was intended
to replace Chrysler’s wedge engines at the upcoming
NASCAR Daytona 500. As we know Richard Petty won
that race in February 1964 with a single four-barrel Hemi
that Chrysler called the “Track Version”. Mission
accomplished. It was 426 Hemi victory Number One.
Late in December of 1963 Chrysler’s drag racing
contingent started their own development program. They
cast up some aluminum crossrams and built Hemi
engines for four test cars. Two Plymouth and two Dodge
Max Wedge cars (one 4-speed and one automatic for
each car line) were pulled off the assembly line to have
the Hemis installed.
LIONS, JUNE 13 & 14, 1964
How cozy were Hot Rod Magazine and the
NHRA? Famed Lions Drag Strip was an NHRAsanctioned track for some time. For the
weekend of June 13 and 14, 1964, the NHRA told
C. J. Hart to close his Lions track so as not to
conflict with the Hot Rod race at Riverside.
Pappy Hart polled the United Drag Racers
Association, UDRA, who decided to back Hart if
he opened the track on June 13 and 14. Lions
then conducted a UDRA meet and switched
affiliation to become an AHRA track. It’s hard to
imagine that the NHRA would forsake what was
arguably the premier track in the country for just
one race, but that is apparently what happened.
Optimistically, they selected the weekend before Daytona
to make their Hemi debut. This was the weekend of the
NHRA’s Winternationals. However, all the bugs could not
be worked out of the drag cars before Pomona. The first
win ever for the 426 Hemi would therefore go to the roundy-round guys.
The first win for a drag version of the 426 Hemi wouldn’t come until April 1964. The Ramchargers took their test
car (one of the four above-mentioned re-powered Max Wedge cars) to Detroit Dragway and won in the A/FX
class.
Remember that the Hemi was initially a trial balloon. The engine’s continued existence depended on its ability to
win. Richard Petty proved that the Hemi was the real deal. The Ramchargers showed that the drag Hemi was also
an improvement over past equipment.
Journey Through Hemi-land: The Hot Rod Magazine Drag Race of June 1964 - Page 1 of 4 - MoparMax.com
Volume IV, Issue 9
September 3, 2009
In the Spring of 1964 production of the Max Wedge engine was therefore halted and Hemi production was begun.
In the May 1964 issue of Hot Rod, a Chrysler ad announced the availability of a “Track Version” and a “Drag
Version” of the new 426 Hemi. Concurrently with the decision to build engines it was announced that Chrysler
would build factory production cars with the Hemi as an option. As with the Max Wedges, the cars would be
available as close-to-production steel cars or as package cars with aluminum sheet metal and other goodies. As
with the Max Wedges, both steel and aluminum varieties had dual four-barrel crossrams.
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This Chrysler ad ran in the May 1964 issue of Hot Rod. The magazine was probably on news stands in April. However, at that
time, Chrysler had yet to produce any factory Hemi cars of any variety and it is doubtful if even crate engines were yet available.
Essentially this was an ad for a future product, not something on a car dealer’s sales lot. Note that the ad presents both the “drag
version” (two four-barrels on a crossram intake) and the “track version” (one four-barrel) of the 426 Hemi. The drag versions were
listed as being either the 12.5:1 or 11.0:1 types. Towards the end of May Chrysler would start production of the aluminum-nosed,
two-door post cars which used the 12.5:1 engine. When those were finished, in June, Chrysler built a brief run of all-steel (except
for the aluminum scoop) hardtops which were intended to be a little more streetable, hence the 11.0:1 compression. The “track
version” notched the first win for any 426 Hemi at the February 1964 Daytona 500. Which “drag version” car scored the first win?
In the spring of ‘64 Chrysler took a big gamble. Since the end of the model year was approaching, they decided to
produce a run of Hemi-equipped machines in sufficient quantities (50) to make them legal for the NHRA’s Super
Stock classes. They decided there wasn’t time just to wait for car orders to arrive as they had done with the Max
Wedge options; they would make a production run and hope for the best.
The first aluminum-nosed Dodge Hemi was built and then shipped on May 13. The last of the 55 built was shipped
on June 13. Fifty-five Plymouth cars were also made; the first one shipped May 19 and the last on June 12.
Luckily they found buyers for all the cars in short order and so sent the NHRA a list of all 100 Hemi buyers. This
letter, dated June 15 would eventually result in the Hemis being sanctioned for the SS/A classes. Take note of that
date, Monday, June 15. The Hot Rod race at Riverside was the weekend before the letter was even written and
well before it was received by the NHRA, yet most of the production Hemis had already been built. What
happened?
By the time of Hot Rod’s Riverside event, production Hemi cars were indeed in the hands of several Mopar teams.
Since the Hemis were not yet legal SS cars, the Mopar guys hauled in their vintage (and legal) Max Wedges. And
most interestingly, a lucky few also showed up with their weeks-old Hemi cars. Although they couldn’t compete in
SS, they could run in A/FX (“A” factory experimental/No minimum production requirement) or A/MP (“A” modified
production/No minimum production requirement).
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Journey Through Hemi-land: The Hot Rod Magazine Drag Race of June 1964 - Page 2 of 4 - MoparMax.com
Volume IV, Issue 9
September 3, 2009
At least four teams showed up at Riverside with two cars in tow, one an old wedge and the other a new Hemi.
These teams were headed by Eckstrand, Grove, Landy and Proffitt. The fact that several drivers had multiple cars
has caused much confusion over the years especially in the area of photo identification. (Helpful hint:The Max
Wedges were hardtops while the Hemis were two-door posts.)
Most of the two-car Mopar teams entered their Wedges in SS. Eckstrand, Grove, and Proffitt entered their Hemi
cars in A/FX while Landy put his in A/MP. Eckstrand was victorious in his Max Wedge in S/SA. A Comet won
A/FX. Landy won the A/MP class. So at this point we could conclude that one factor that made the Hot Rod drag
race notable was that it marked the end of the Max Wedge as Mopar’s preeminent weapon and the beginning of
the Hemi’s forty-plus-year reign as drag racing’s most powerful engine. Richard Petty would use the Hemi over a
ten-year stretch to win a record 200 NASCAR races and seven titles, but ultimately his engine was retired.
In drag racing, what started at Riverside has continued to this day. Every Top Fueler and Funny Car is now Hemi
powered. The SS/AH (H is for Hemi) class is the home for the quickest factory stockers.
This photo of Landy’s ‘64 Hemi Dodge appeared in Hot Rod Magazine’s 2007 special “Hemi Power” and inspired the article you
are now reading. King Richard notched the first win ever for the 426 Hemi using a single four-barrel carb. Is it possible that Landy’s
Mopar, in this picture, did record the first crossram victory?
Hot Rod magazine published a special edition in the winter of 2007 entitled “Hemi Power.” On page 55 they
presented a photo of Dick Landy working on the engine of his 1964 Hemi Dodge lightweight.
The caption read, “It’s possible that Dick Landy had the first 426 Hemi to win a sanctioned drag race, as his socalled Hemi-Charger Dodge 330 sedan took the A/Modified Production class win at the HOT ROD Magazine
Championship Drags held in March 1964.”
Journey Through Hemi-land: The Hot Rod Magazine Drag Race of June 1964 - Page 3 of 4 - MoparMax.com
Volume IV, Issue 9
Let’s examine that caption. March
1964? No. The race was June 12-14
and Landy’s car wasn’t built until May
21. Landy won A/MP, correct. “. . .
first 426 Hemi to win a sanctioned
drag race. . . ”, again no. As
mentioned above, the Ramchargers’
April A/FX win was most likely the
first Hemi victory. But how about this
two-word change “. . . first production
426 Hemi car to win. . . ”?The
Ramchargers’ car was a one-off,
Hemi-added original Max Wedge car.
Landy’s was a one-of-fifty, soon-tobe-legal factory production machine.
Chrysler would ultimately build about
10,000 426 Hemi cars including over
400 crossram-equipped “package”
cars. These have likely won untold
thousands of drag races.
But Dick Landy probably notched the
first production 426 Hemi car win and
he did it at that legendary Hot Rod
race at Riverside.
September 3, 2009
About the author
Pete Haldiman’s family lived in Artesia,
California, when he was born in
November1944. In 1954 they moved to
Anaheim in Orange County. Location,
location, location! East, down Ball Road,
Pete’s family watched Disneyland emerge
from the orange groves. Due North was
Walter Knott’s narrow gauge railroad and
the Berry Farm’s model railroad store. The
narrow gauge railroads are still of interest
to Pete today and are one of the reasons
he currently resides in Colorado.
This photo of the engine compartment of Dick Landy’s 1964 Dodge was taken in
Colorado in 2001 by Greg Lane. This is an aluminum-nosed car with the “drag
version”
of
the
426 Hemi.
Dick
used
this
photo
in
his website,
www.dicklandy.com , several years later. Hot Rod published a photo of this
same engine compartment in 2007 but their photo was taken the weekend of
June 12-14, 1964. Hot Rod states that Landy may have scored the first drag
Hemi win ever with this, a factory production car. Unknowingly, Hot Rod may
also have just printed the earliest known photo of the engine compartment of a
factory production Hemi car. Dodge and Plymouth had shipped 110 Hemi cars
by mid-June but everyone must have been too excited to take pictures and
document the new machines. They wanted to race ASAP.
Back in California, two doors down lived
Kenny Lindley, who constructed many
Hemi-powered dragsters in the mid to late
‘50s. In 1960, at Western High, one of the
school’s “assemblies” featured a young
Dick Dale with his Del-Tones. Dick started
the “Surf Music” craze that was huge in
southern California then and is huge in the
Haldiman household today. Pete attended
the Junior College in Fullerton and drove
past Leo Fender’s factory everyday. Dale,
Fender, the reverb and Vibrasonic; life
was sweet. In 1967, fresh out of UCLA,
Pete started his thirty-year civil
engineering career with the City of Los
Angeles. During most of that time Pete
occupied his weekends with his Mopar
car hobby, Pete paid intense attention to
the various Mopar Super Stockers and
A/FX-ers which seemed to run almost
continuously at the SoCal drag strips. In
the '80s Pete was active in the National
Hemi Owner's Association (NHOA) and
eventually became its National Director.
Pete’s first car was a ‘65 Barracuda
Formula S. First wife, Renee Fobes, was
acquired in 1968. In 1969 came a used
one-owner ‘66 Hemi Satellite. Both wife
and Satellite still reside at the Haldiman
estate today. Numerous Hemi cars and
Darrell Davis’s VIN number research has confirmed what most Hemi aficionados have believed for years: No single four -barrel “track
version” of the 426 Hemi ever rolled out of a Chrysler assembly plant in a fully functioning automobile. The Pettys and others built
their NASCAR cars from factory components. They were similar to A/FX cars in that respect. A couple of years ago someone
convinced the NHRA that the single four-barrel Hemi should be made legal for use in the Stock classes. The NHRA acquiesced and
numerous Mopar clubs have come and
gone. Over the years Pete has assembled
a book of material on each of his cars and
many other files on things of interest.
the single four-barrel Hemi is presently a legit A Stocker. The first car to be built under the new rules is this 1964 Plymouth Savoy
Since it is every Mopar hobbyist’s duty to
campaigned by Steve Hagberg of Berthoud, Colorado. The single four intake of 1964 was probably initially cast in aluminum and later
add to the body of Mopar knowledge,
in magnesium. Steve is using a vintage ‘64 mag piece. If the “track version” of the Hemi had ever been built on a Chrysler assembly
Pete has tried to share what he has
line, which it wasn’t, this is what it would have looked like. (Note: Steve has experimented with several engine configurations over the
learned. For twenty years he has been
last couple of years. The engine shown does not use ’64 iron K heads but he has another with the heads that Petty would have used.
writing articles under his “Journey Through
They are among the best, but very hard to find.) Now we have a brand new “first” to anticipate: “The First Drag Win For A Track
Hemiland” byline, which in itself is his
Version of the 426 Hemi.” Keep your radios tuned. Chevy boys, prepare your protests.
tribute to Ross MacLean who wrote for
So there you have it. One man’s opinion. The “track version” of the 426 Hemi scored its first win at Daytona in
February 1964 with Richard Petty driving. The production car “drag version” notched victory number one in June
1964 with Dick Landy at the wheel at the first Hot Rod Magazine Drag Race.
the Airflow Club newsletter in the ‘70s
under “Journey Through Airflowland.”
Pete may be reached at
[email protected]
Journey Through Hemi-land: The Hot Rod Magazine Drag Race of June 1964 - Page 4 of 4 - MoparMax.com
Volume IV, Issue 9
September 2, 2009
PERFECT DOOR PANEL RESTORATION FROM JUST DASHES
Front and rear door panels make up the major part of your vehicle’s interior. They could be hard
plastic, as these restored Mopar E-Body parts, single or multi-grain vinyl and/or multi-colored as well.
JUST DASHES can restore any vinyl covered or hard plastic panels you can remove from your vehicle.
Dielectrically stamped door panels from the Fifties and early Sixties are our specialty. Plastic chrome
plating, gauge cluster refurbishment and gauge restoration services are always available.
JUST DASHES will match your original factory colors, or create custom colors from your supplied color
swatch. All JUST DASHES vinyl restorations are performed by skilled craftsmen and are guaranteed
concours quality. Regardless of the year, make or model, car or truck, JUST DASHES can restore
headrests, dashboards, arm rests, consoles and more. Check out all their restoration products and services at www.justdashes.com .
QUICK FUEL TECHNOLOGY DUAL PATTERN THROTTLE BODIES
Quick Fuel Technology’s Dual Pattern Throttle Bodies allow your carburetor to mount on both a
standard 4150 or a large 4500-pattern intake manifold. These solid billet aluminum Dual Pattern
Throttle Bodies are CNC machined to exacting tolerances and can be ordered with either 1-11/16-inch
or 1-3/4-inch stainless steel throttle plates to best fit your carburetion needs.
QFT hand builds its Dual Pattern Throttle Bodies "slabbed" throttle shafts (machined away for more
flow) and Teflon ribbon bearings for durability and superior sealing. The throttle plates are secured with
low profile Torx plate screws to help reduce air turbulence. These throttle bodies feature a unique
adjustable secondary pump cam bracket that allows for secondary airflow adjustment. The QFT spacer
plate offers a smooth transition and is required for use on the large flange 4500-style intakes.
Each throttle body comes with an assortment of throttle links to easily change the opening ratio from
soft progressive to medium progressive or 1:1. All attaching screws and gaskets are included.
For more information, contact the fuel delivery experts on the web at www.quickfueltechnology.com , or e-mail [email protected] .
PENSKE RACING SHOCKS ANNOUNCES NEW DOUBLE ADJUSTABLE DRAG RACING STRUT
Penske Racing Shocks, a world leader in racing shock technology, announces the release of their new double adjustable strut,
available for drag racing applications.
The Pro Drag Strut is designed and valved specifically for drag racing applications in the NHRA Pro-Stock, Pro-Mod, ADRL, and
IHRA classes. Featuring dual shaft adjusters that have been customized to current drag strut installations, the Pro Drag Strut
offers quick and easy adjustments between runs with the simple use of an Allen wrench.
Having been tested and developed over multiple race seasons with varying track environments, driver preferences, and chassis
designs, the Pro Drag Strut offers a full range of adjustment to accommodate any condition without having to rebuild. A hardanodized aluminum body, low-friction shaft seals, and quality machined components, make the Pro Drag Strut the most consistent
and highest-performing drag strut available on the market. All attributes combined, the latest offering from Penske Racing Shocks
contributes to better controlled launch and improved down-track stability.
Beginning at $6,495.00 a pair, the Pro Drag Strut is available now with or without brake packages, and can be purchased through
Penske Racing Shocks, Penske Racing Shocks Midwest, and from all leading chassis builders.
For additional information, please contact Penske Racing Shocks at www.penskeshocks.com .
Mo Products - Page 1 of 1 - MoparMax.com
Volume IV, Issue 9
September 3, 2009
YES, WE MADE A TYPO
You ran a photo of a new Challenger racing and older 'Cuda, but the caption read, "In an old-versus-new battle,
the old Hemi-powered Challenger got down the quarter mile in 13.30 seconds while the new one took 13.50
seconds. Yes!" The yellow 'Cuda pictured wasn't a Challenger!
Patrick Clement
Greenfield, Wisconsin
A HEMI BY ANY OTHER NAME?
What do you have to say?
Love the website. It's great to have an all Mopar magazine style web page to go to. I am very interested in Mopar
racing combinations that people run. Unfortunately, Chris Rini's Avenger runs a Sonny's Chevy-Hemi (Semi-Hemi),
not a Mopar Hemi. This is just an FYI and thought you all would want to know.
Wailin
Nixa, Missouri
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LOOKING FOR DOLLARS OR PARTS
I'm restoring a 1980 Dodge Powerwagon. Been trying to see who to contact about getting sponsored. Just thought
it would easy to restore a classic with a little help. I've already started by taking the whole body off the frame. Now
I'm going to redo everything from top to bottom. Like I said, it's a 1980 Dodge Powerwagon Stepside 4x4, one of
Mopar's best creations. Just little things to help get this beauty on the road.
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Philipsburg, Pennsylvania
PITCHING A STORY IDEA
I have just read your magazine and found it to be great! But I think that if you were to do an article on High Horse Performance out of Newark,
Delaware, you would find the guy who started this entire R&D on the east coast that people are not taking credit for. I request with all respect that you
take a chance and come and see what this guys Josh does with these new Mopars! Thank you.
Claude Lacombe
See what the readers are saying - Page 1 of 2 - MoparMax.com
Volume IV, Issue 9
September 3, 2009
BLOCK FOR SALE
ADVERTISEMENT
I have a ONE of a KIND 1959 Experimental Aluminum Slant 6 Block. In 1959
Chrysler Engineers put in a Production Test Request to the Kocomo plant to cast apx.
40, 225 C.I.D. blocks for the testing Dyno room. They were sent to the Trenton plant
to be machined, then to the Dyno room for testing. After testing they were
disassembled, inspected, logged, hand and stamped. After the testing program was
complete, all blocks were destroyed, except one. One engineer decided to take one
home where it sat in his garage for over 20 years. All these facts have been verified
by Willem Weertman and Steve Magnante. I bought it from him 25 years ago where it
has been on display in my Hot Rod Shop and recently in my garage at home. It is
time for this one of a kind piece of Mopar history to have a new home.
Please send my e-mail address to the Mopar Collectors you are in contact with as this
block needs a new home. For more info you can contact me at
[email protected] . Thank you for your interest.
Robert Schulz
Yucaipa, California
GEE, THANKS!
Wow! You guys have really outdone yourselves with this issue! Wonderful pictures
and content! Keep up the great work and keep me on the list. I really appreciate it!
Pat Fogel
Floral City, Florida
WE NEED TO AROUND A BIT MORE
Are you guys kidding? The picture of the #77 Challenger in your coverage of the
Carlisle show is a new version of the car Sam Posey drove in the SCCA TRANS AM
series. You guys are too hung up on drag racing. Yeah, there are more Mopar
owners out there that drag race but there are also a lot that don't and want to see reporting on ALL Mopars.
Jess Neal
Colorado Springs, Colorado
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