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Who’s In This Issue of Often Imitated, Never Duplicated-- RPM Mag IS The ORIGINAL Voice Of Extreme Drag Racing & Wild Street Machines WORLDWIDE... Don’t Settle For Less! We DELIVER Insane Fast Cars And Bring You NO POLITICS... JUST ACTION! Your ONLY “Real Time” “Real World” Car Mag... PERIOD! Sept. 2013

So Much Horsepower Packed Into One Place... That Place IS RPM Magazine!

GOING EXTREME IN 2013! STREET & STRIP! An insane cruise night with some of the fastest street machines in the country, then a heads-up noholds-barred grudge race... it can’t get any better than that!

46 SEEING RED With 833 cubic inches of nasty nitrous injected big block between the framerails, The Woods / Kramer “Punisher” Camaro Pro Mod has their opponents SEEING RED!



A “survivor” 1967 Plymouth GTX HEMI Super Stock legend finds a good home. The first time Jim Baraniuk encountered Old Trapper was in 1968 as he watched it blow by his 1968 Roadrunner on the ¼-mile, and right then he knew he would someday own it.

Inaugural International Pro Mod Challenge

The Pre-Event 411...


NEOPMA vs PMRA USA vs Canada


A Day At The BIG DOG With Jr. Ward 36


Read COMPLeTe RPM MaGaZINe baCk Issues ONLINe FRee aT 6

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Story & Photos by

Mark at goDragRacing.org

The Woods / Kramer Nitrous Camaro Pro Mod Has Their Opponents


ust a bit south of Baltimore Maryland is what some might call the Mecca of Pro Mod, and tucked away in a very condensed area of a few small towns is the team of Paul Woods Sr., owner of this gorgeous 2002 “Punisher Racing” Camaro, and Steve Kramer of KBRC Race Cars, driver of the hot rod, AKA “Hitman”. Just past the border of Baltimore you’ll find Pasadena Maryland and Severna Park, all located within a few miles from the major Mid Atlantic racetracks, MIR and Capitol. This is the true stomping


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ground of “Pro Mod Outlaws”. The Pro Mod/Top Sportsman racing in this area is almost feverish, with a long history of strong series’ and tough competition, which is where our story of this team, their roots and their success in Pro Mod begins.

Paul Woods Sr. Paul is just 71 years young. A man of extremely high integrity, his passion for the sport has grown through life experience and

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Photos, left: Outside of Paul Woods Sr’s tidy garage at his modest home, the Camaro glistens of Porsche Red by Banshee Paint, better known as “The Shop”. It takes a mountain of cubic inches to keep a competitive car in the nitrous ranks, and of course an ample amount of nitrous oxide! To arrive at this most recent version on the Punisher Camaro, much of the car was rebuit to handle the extra power of the new 833 cubic inch motor, and the front framerails were modified to get it in there.

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his own racing, which spans 50+ years and started with his love of cars back in 1961 with his first car; a ’62 Impala Super Sport 409, dual quad stick car which he ran until 1969. Paul then began his stint with the Seabees in Vietnam and extensive training with the Navy Seals, leaving in 1972. Like many war vets, the hot rod and racing scene was raging at the time for those returning from battle, and Paul again began racing a 427 SS Camaro for 16 years, then moving on to an S&W Race Cars Vega. Finally, the Pro Mod bug bit him, and fellow racer and car builder Ed Burnley had a single framerail 2002 Camaro rolling chassis for sale which caught Paul’s eye. So begins the saga of “Punisher Racing” and the addition of Steve Kramer at the wheel in 2010 when Paul Sr. developed health problems from his time in the service. This is a true family “hobby” where everyone is involved including some of Paul’s lifelong friends.

needed a driver, he considered Steve to be the right candidate for not only that job, but also upgrading the car and adding some extra skill to the teams tuning skills.

KBRC Race cars is a fullfledged chassis shop where the Camaro was chopped up and upgraded to the new 25.1 E spec. Changes were also made up front to accept the 706ci motor out of Jim Halsey’s Pro Mod, which The Steve Kramer / Paul Woods Connection was later replaced with the 833ci Fulton Paul had spent considerable time running the Camaro in Top Sportsman and Pro Modi- mill which came from NEOPMA nitrous fied. He and Steve were competitors, and had known each other since the 80’s, so when Paul Sr. standout Fredy Scriba three years ago. Steve’s first passes in the car netted him the respect and numbers needed to begin some more serious competition. It should be noted that in all the years racing this car, they have never failed to qualify for an event, which speaks volumes for this teams abilities. Steve’s first full pass during a special The team uses no electronic communications, all is done by hand signals and team cooperation to bring the car back in its burnout tracks evenly.


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event at Capitol Raceway almost ended in tragedy when opponent Bruce Mullins crossed lanes nipping Kramer’s chutes. Steve averted disaster, and it didn’t seem to even faze him as the team progressed steadily over time into the 6.50 zone, and then into the 6.30’s. Paul Sr. says Steve has an incredible attention for detail, which sold him on making him a venerable part of the team. “His eye and knack for detail and care of the car is second to none, as are his skills as a fabricator and welder,” Paul Sr. states. “Steve’s welding of all types, Mig, Tig, you name it, is impeccable.”

The New Revised “Punisher” Camaro Along with the decision to move forward competing as a team, more changes were needed to accommodate that bigger, badder 833 cubic inch motor. The Camaro was upgraded to the newer safety standards and performance needs by way of a full chrome moly double rail frame, a completely new four link was made, and the front frame rails were modified for the larger engine. A steel floor was made for the driver’s side with aluminum on the passenger side. Custom nitrous bottle mounts hold two 30lb bottles, while everything behind the front compartment is carbon fiber. Kramer also fabricated the two sets of 94” chrome moly wheelie bars; a two bar system and Steve’s own preference one bar style, which they change as per track conditions. The rear consists of a sheet metal Fab 9 1/2 KBRC fabricated housing, Mark Williams’s center section and floaters, Strange axles, Penske shocks and Lamb “non CF” brakes. All Lamb components make up the newly redone front suspension as well. 34.5x17x16 Hoosier slicks are mounted on bead locked American Racing “Pro Series” wheels. Up front Mickey Thompson 25x15x4.5 tires are mated to American Racing wheels. Because the Camaro still retains its metal quarter panels and full rockers/door jambs (yes this was a real Camaro donor body) it comes in a bit heavy at a race weight of 2,620lbs with driver and all fluids while in a class that is legal down to 2,375lbs. Carbon fiber doors, trunk lid, roof and new front end are the only weight saving

The car gets a complete reframing to make room for the new 833ci motor on the jig at Kramer Brothers Race Craft. RPM Magazine, THE Voice Of Fast Cars WORLDWIDE

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items on the body, which sports a brilliant Porsche Red laid on by Banshee Painting “The Shop” and “Chucky B”, with silver SS stripes and custom airbrushing. The doors actually open with factory door handles, and all windows are Lexan. Paint touch-ups are now in the hands of “Auto Body Specialists Paint Shop” in Rosedale MD. A 12-inch Pro Stock scoop covers the intake and a 24-inch aluminum wing provides down force on 235+MPH passes. Powering this Punisher is a freshened up three year old aluminum 4.900 bore 5.200 bore spacing Dart DRC1 block 833ci Fulton motor. Inside, the Bryant crank spins GRP rods on Clevite bearings with 13.8:1 compression. Venolia pistons are sealed in the bores with M-2 rings and GRP buttons on the lower oil ring lands. The engine uses 10-40W SHELL Rotella “Diesel” oil in a 10qt dry sump, then through a Moroso Stage 5 pump and back to the Moroso split pan. The LSM cam grind of “monumental proportions” is driven off a Jesel belt drive pushing Jesel lifters and Trend pushrods through the sky-high cam profile to the Billet CFE heads which contain Jesel rockers, Sig Erson springs, titanium retainers and Sig Erson valves, all covered with highly polished aluminum sheet metal valve covers. The CFE sheet metal intake is complete with split Braswell Dominators on top fed a tasty blend of VP C23 118 octane fuel and four stages of nitrous oxide consisting of two internal “Viper” systems and two external fogger systems. Usually only three stages are used in tandem with an NOS nitrous controller. Two custom purging systems spew excess pressure skyward while the entire intake is heavily sealed to a custom pan under the massive scoop by KBRC Race Cars. All to push this engine close to 2,800HP set on


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KILL. The car carry’s a small 10qt radiator with a GSR water pump cooling it. A single 16-volt 7lb Lithium battery turns the GSR starter. The MSD distributor sends power through Moroso Ultra 40 wires that carry the spark to NGK plugs, and spent gases exit through custom made mild steel coated headers by Steve Kramer and KBRC Race Cars. Tuning on the laptop is handled by Paul Sr’s stepson, Jay Ciboroski, and Steve Kramer using a Racepak data logger with 32 points of information and complete MSD ignition system, which is almost standard nowadays on these cars. Paul also notes fellow racers Gary Courtier and tuner Milt Decker for their extra help with advice, tuning tips and tidbits. All this power is managed by a Lenco 4spd, air shifted, with an optional manual override, the Lenco shifter being used only for first and reverse. The trans is mated to the engine through a Boninfante 10” three-disc clutch inside a Trick Titanium clutch can.

Though it looks confining, Steve has this seat and interior of the “Punisher Camaro” all to himself and knows it like the back of his hand, note the details of the airbrushed dashboard.

The speed and quickness of these cars is not to be taken lightly since this team runs the full quarter-mile most of the time with the Northeast Outlaw Pro Mod As-

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sociation. Safety and team management is critical to becoming consistent and competitive.

Go On A Pass In A Nitrous Camaro Pro Mod It all starts out with the teams preparations in the pits. Steve Kramer straps himself into the car as either Tim Kramer or Jay Ciboroski attach the straps to his head/neck restraint device. Steve is clothed in a full RJS-20 racing suit with a G-Force helmet, his visual movement is now limited to around three inches side to side as the device and safety padding in the cage limit it. The team uses no electronic communications so it’s up to hand signals and a very well laid out plan of attack. Steve fires this beast up stone cold as members of the team head out to the 300ft mark to aid Steve after his burnout, which is a 3rd-4th gear change at around 5,500RPM, as Steve begins to “feel” the tires respond to the track. Backing up the ride is either Tim or Jay and Paul Kramer Jr. airs out the car and opens the bottles to begin purging the nitrous. Steve relies on signals from Tim or Jay as to when everyone is clear of the car, since purging a nitrous car be dangerous should there be a problem during the purge. Once Steve receives the all clear signal, he depressurizes the bottles through two separate purges while reading the dash mounted gauges. Four massive bursts are made through the engine as well. The crowd loves this, but there is also a clear purpose of cooling the cylinders to this exercise. Steve brings the Camaro forward, inching near the beams, and the team takes their positions as Steve Kramer pushes the Camaro hard through his screaming burnouts. Below, jumping off the staring line, the brilliant SS Camaro hits the bars and plants the tires on a low 6-second pass.


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he bumps into the lights with the engine hovering around 140-150 degrees. Steve always prides himself on courtesy staging, not rushing himself or the other driver. Once in place, the pedal is matted on the two-step and spins to anywhere from 4,200 - 5,200RPM, depending on the track conditions. On the leave, Steve’s reaction times are excellent, generally in the .002 to .030 range, with the car already hitting second gear by the 60ft mark, Steve has traveled it in 1.00 to 1.03 seconds with three stages of nitrous oxide in by 2.5 seconds (the team hasn’t used the fourth yet this year). He’s in fourth gear by the eighth-mile and it’s all powering down track now to his best of the year, a 6.117 @ 231.83 mph! The engine is shut off at the stripe, but not until reaching 8,000RPM during the run, and chutes are pulled to haul it all back down for a clean look at the plugs.

Paul Woods Sr. can usually be found in the stands watching as the car makes it’s pass while the team videotapes the run using a camera mounted either inside or outside in order to review each pass.

The TEAM Effect Over the past few years, the team has gelled into a consistent force at each race with many local wins, a winner’s circle appearance at the 2011 Super Chevy at Maple Grove Raceway in the “Chevy vs. The Step son Jay Ciboroski displays his tattoos garnishing his arms. A dedicated car guy, he had the open cylinder heads embedded for life.

Meet the team of Punisher Racing, from left to right: Jay Ciboroski, Paul Woods III, Paul Woods Jr., Paul Woods Sr., Steve Kramer, Charlie Leudtke “Lucky” and Tim Kramer


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World” session. Two final round appearances at Maple Grove “Rumble At The Grove” and Atco Raceways “Night Of Thrills” in 2013, boosting them into third place in the very competitive NEOPMA points series which is always a full field of very competitive cars. No one person can handle what it takes to run a competitive Pro Mod, and included in this very well prepped team is: The main man and car Owner Paul Woods Sr, Steve Kramer as driver, fabricator and partial tuning duties. Paul Woods Jr. is the engine front man and all around maintenance person, pretty much the number two man in this crew with regards to engine and labor on this ride. Step-son Jay Ciboroski handles the main tuning, reading laptop data, clutch tuning, engine repair, and staging, plus has a wicked love of tattoos to affirm his position as a real car man. Tim Kramer has taken some of the same duties as of late with clutch tuning and staging. We can’t leave out Charlie Leudtke AKA “Lucky” all of 70 years old who performs the duties of maintaining everything, setting up the team’s equipment, readying the car for transport, slick duties and tires, plus the nitrous filling. And there’s Paul Woods III, just being promoted to similar duties keeping the car immaculate and a host of other chores.

Steve readies himself for a pass, focused on the finish line and his duties at hand. Below, Steve in the winners circle at Maple Grove Raceway where the team took the championship in the Chevy vs The World series at Super Chevy.

You won’t find this team in the pits with a massive hauler or stacker. They bring this car to the track in a 32ft enclosed trailer pulled by a dually truck, and keep it a very close family affair. They are a team of family and friends who pride themselves on performance and their exceptional feats in the ring of top-level nitrous Pro Mod drag racing. You can find them at all of the Northeast Outlaw Pro Mod Association events and if you do, please find the time to stop by and meet these folks, especially Paul Sr. and Steve Kramer, grab a “Hero Card” and just simply enjoy a bench racing experience with them.

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Inaugural International Pro Mod Challenge Article Courtesy NEOPMA Photos by Mark, goDragRacing.org


he International Pro Mod Challenge Event was a concept that has been discussed for the past few years between the USA based NEOPMA (Northeast Outlaw Pro Mod Association), and the Ontario Canada based PMRA (Pro Modified Racing Association), with several tracks considered as an appropriate venue. 2013 was the year that it came to fruition with Maryland International Raceway providing the venue, and many sponsors stepping up to make it possible. The concept for the event is USA vs. Canada, with each of the organization’s top 8 Pro Mods facing off to crown a 2013 International Pro Mod Champion. Each team will use their own Association rules, and to eliminate any of the associations bringing in a “ringer”, to qualify, the teams must have run a minimum of two events in 2013 with their respective association. The International Pro Mod Challenge is set for Maryland International Raceway (“MIR” www.mirdrag.com) September 20 & 21. If you are a fan of hardcore Pro Mod drag racing, you need to be there! The NEOPMA Concept The Northeast Outlaw Pro Mod Association (NEOPMA) is in its 21st continuous year of operation, and was formerly known as the Northeast Pro Shootout Association. The idea of creating a race series came to John Mazzorana (Founder and President) the first time he started using


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nitrous oxide when racing at West Hampton Drag strip and competing with about ten other race cars. John mentioned the idea of a series to several other racers who thought it was something worth exploring. Soon after, Ronnie Syder, Bob Perry and John discussed the idea and formally outlined the plan. It became very obvious that they needed some guidance, so John called his friend Vinnie Napp, (deceased) Owner and Manager of Old Bridge Raceway Park. Vinnie spent much time educating John as to the ins and outs of being a promoter in drag racing. In late 1991, John set up a meeting at a local diner in Long Island, NY and was pleased to find thirty potential members attended and joined. Their first event was held in April 1992 at Raceway Park in Old Bridge NJ with 28 race teams participating for a 16-car field. The club grew very quickly with members like Mike Castellana, Vinnie Budano, Ed Guarnaccia and many others making this a very competitive place to race. Within several months they had over 35 teams participating! …And The Rest Is Truly History! 2013 was the year that the NEOPMA decided to somewhat rebrand the Association with a new logo and a fresh feel. Today, NEOPMA is one of the largest quarter-mile Pro Mod associations in North America with 58 members, 40 plus active racers, competing at over 10 events per year at some of the fastest and finest tracks in the country with payouts that aggressively compete with the larger associations. Our sponsors help make us stronger while we proactively use and promote their products. NEOPMA brings high quality exciting entertainment to spectators and thereby drives incremental revenues/volume for both the tracks and sponsors. NEOPMA, 2013 So Far In 2013 the NEOPMA reverted back to a single Pro Modified class with a 16-car field, again blending

Nitrous, Blower and Turbocharged cars together, which to date seem evenly matched due to the NEOPMA rules. This season started off with great promise at the first event, “Door Wars”, at Maryland International Raceway (MIR), which at times is referred to as the NEOPMA home track. There were 20 Pro Mods competing for 16 spots, and competition was fierce. Many teams were shaking off the dust from the offseason and trying to get a grip on their tune up. Jeff Miller (who eventually won the event), with Steve King tuning, showed that they are contenders and qualified #1 with a 5.95/243mph, with fellow blower competitor Dwayne Wolfe also in the 5’s with a 5.96 @ 237. The next 9 teams were in the 6’s, with the remainder struggling to make the show after the long winter break. The next event was again at MIR during their historic Mountain Motor Nationals. Spring 2013 has been extremely unpredictable in the Northeast to say the least, and the NEOPMA, like many other outdoor events, had that event cancelled due to weather. Next up was the Pro Mod Wars at New Capitol Raceway. Even during the intense heat wave across much of the country, drivers were finding a tune up to get down the 140+ degree track. In the second session of qualifying Fred Scriba ran an amazing 6.10 to show he is ready for all weather and track conditions. Dwayne Wolfe also posted a good number during the heat, running a 6.24 with his blown Firebird. Gerry Capano and Gary Courtier had a side by side race with Capano running a career best 6.10 after struggling with the car the last couple of races, and Courtier ran a 6.23 with his beautiful nitrous Camaro. With Fred Scriba and Gary Courtier racing their way to the finals, a midnight curfew in Crofton MD, and less than 30 minutes to turn the Pro Mods around, it was decided to complete the finals at the next NEOPMA event at Capitol on August 17.

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At Atco Dragway’s Door Wars, Fredy Scriba and Team had their 63’ Sorcerer Corvette Pro Mod tuned and ready for action with an impressive win in Jersey. It was on to the famed Maple Grove Raceway in Mohnton, PA, where Gary Courtier and team had their 68’ Courtier Home Improvement, Milt Decker tuned Jerry Bickle Pro Mod Camaro ready for action. And they proved it with an impressive holeshot win at the “Rumble at the Grove”. Gary’s reaction times were awesome, and he used it in the finals to take down Fred Scriba who has been on a tear with consistent 6.0-6-teens for the last three events.

As it stands, there are a number of NEOPMA Pro Mods running in the 5.90s-6.0s range with one blower victory and three nitrous victories so far this season. The amount of media coverage has been outstanding in 2013 due to the extreme on track talent and hard work of Vito Micciolo and Mark Walker behind the scenes. Sponsors are excited with the exposure, coverage and promotions the Association provides, and series announcer Rockin’ Rob takes NEOPMA events to a new level with his enthusiasm and high energy on the PA.

Below is just a sampling of contenders from the diverse group of Northeast Outlaw Pro Mod Association racers. Fred Scriba: Fredy Scriba in the drivers seat with his Father tuning has been extremely fast and consistent over the last three years, not to mention a two-time NEOPMA Champion of the Nitrous Class (2010, 2012). Fred’s fastest ET/Speed to date is 5.93/239mph. Their Jerry Hass built; 865 CI Fulton nitrous powered 63’ Chevy Corvette with Ram Clutch and Liberty 5 speed is a force to be reckoned with. Scriba welding and J&S performance sponsor the team. Miller/King: A magazine story within itself is the way the team of Jeff Miller and Steve King started and their many achievements along the way, both individually and as a team. In 2001, Jeff received a phone call from a local chassis shop owner to come to his shop and meet a customer that had just purchased a Pro Mod. That was the day the partnership between Steve King and Jeff Miller began, and many years of racing as a team followed! In 2007 Steve had a 1968 Camaro Pro Mod built and he and Jeff put together a new combination of a Howard Moon built BAE 6 motor and a Troy Critchley blower for it. In 2010, Steve won the NEOPMA championship, and in the meantime, Jeff had the itch to compete again. He purchased the Viper from Steve and got busy turning it in to a 1957 Chevy BelAir. Jeff and Steve moved Steve’s heads, blower, hat and fuel pump over to the ’57. Steve drove the car the first season, while Jeff tuned the motor and chassis, and they finished with a runner up position in the 2011 NEOPMA championship race. Because of the down turn in the economy, both Jeff and Steve sat out the 2012 racing season, but Jeff brought the ’57 out for 2013. With Jeff driving and Steve assisting with the tuning calls, the ’57 won the first two races it competed in and ran a 5.89 at 238 MPH at an event at MIR.

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Fredy Scriba

Jeff Miller & Steve King

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Inaugural International Pro Mod Challenge

Gary Courtier

Dwayne Wolfe

Angela Ray


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Gary Courtier: Gary Courtier Racing’s 1968 Pro Mod Camaro sports an 855 CI Reher Morrison with nitrous injection provided by Switzer Dynamics. The Transmission is 4 speed Lenco air shifted with a Ram clutch. Tuning duties are carried out by Crew Chief Milt Decker and assistant Crew Chief George Pappas. Their best ET to date is a stout 5.91 at 238 mph at the 2012 Shakedown Nationals. The crew consists of Frank Denovellis, Craig Schmidt, Tony Candella, Jason Pappas, Bubby Decker and Joshua Deleon. Special thanks to Gary’s friend Bob Kostrewa for all his help and support. These guys are crazy fast on nitrous and know how to take advantage of every possible variable come race day. Dwayne Wolfe: Dwayne Wolfe pilots the Wolfe Racing 2002 Firebird. The team (featured in last months issue of RPM Magazine) is owned by brothers Dwayne Wolfe and Matt Wolfe and is based in Moorefield, WV. The Bickel-built Pro Mod Firebird was constructed in 2003 and utilizes a 526 CI Hemi prepared by Jan-Cen Racing Engines. To date the team has achieved a best elapsed time of 5.91 sec at 238 mph in April 2013 and knows that there is more power left in the tune up. Dwayne has won many local quick 8 events over the years and has been to the final round on some of the biggest stages in Pro Mod racing. Included in that are two final round appearances over the past four years at the Shakedown 2009 and 2012 events. Angela Ray: Angela Ray is piloting the Magic Racing Team’s 1967 Shelby Mustang GT500 Pro Mod professionally for the 2013 season! Angela saw great success in her first season (2012) achieving the NHRA Division 1 Championship in Top Sportsman along with the 2012 Rookie of the Year for the NEOPMA, and the Magic Racing Team couldn’t be happier. Already during 2013 Angela is wasting no time and has a runner-up finish at the first series race! Angela has been involved in racing since the age of 11 with her Junior Dragster and has numerous IHRA and NHRA event wins, including her first win back in 1997 at the Super Chevy Show at New England Dragway Epping, NH. From the start of her career she has always been successful, making her way to the top-shelf of fast doorslammer drag racing and bringing in a lot of attention in doing so. Her best ET/MPH to date are 6.07 @ 235mph. The Shelby has a Dan Page chassis and a 526 Hemi engine built by R&L Engines. The unique body was built by David Ray, Greg Willms and Ed McDevitt. A Neal Chance converter and Lenco transmission round out the total package of one bad blown Stang! www.magicracingteam.com


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Inaugural International Pro Mod Challenge Steve Drummond: Steve Drummond, 2012 NEOPMA Blower/Turbo Champion, is driver of Mike Bradford’s ’08 Pro Mod Mustang powered by a twin turbo 632 CI Ford with a 3 speed Lenco drive. Their best ET and speed to date 5.95 and 246mph, with the 246 MPH being a NEOPMA and MIR record. Steve owns and runs Drummond Race Cars, a complete racecar fabrication facility for Pro Mod to Outlaw Radial and everything in between, and is known for building some of the fastest engines on the East Coast. This team has proven that although turbochargers have struggled with consistency within the ranks of Pro Modified, it can be done, and Drummond has the time slips and wins to back it up!

Steve Drummond

Tim O’Hare


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Steve Kramer: Featured in this issue of RPM (page 8), the Woods/ Kramer weapon of choice is a 2002 SS Camaro Pro Mod built by Kramer Bros. Race Craft in Pasadena, Maryland. The chrome moly chassis holds the massive 833 cubic inch nitrous assisted motor backed by a 4 speed Lenco transmission and fab 9.5” rear differential. The car owner is Paul Woods of Pasadena, Maryland who drove the car up until 2008 with great success. When Paul decided to take a break from driving, longtime friend Steve Kramer came into the equation taking over the reigns. Paul Woods Jr., Jay Ciboroski, Charlie Luedtke, Paul Woods III, and Tim Kramer are the hard working crew on this team that keeps it running fast and straight. To date the car has been a 6.11 at 231 MPH. Not bad for a 2600 pound nitrous Pro Mod! Tim O’Hare: Tim O’Hare came up through the ranks attending Pro Street events like the famous Orlando World Street Nationals. Now, O’Hare is a NEOPMA 2 time runner-up (2009, 2010) and 2011 Turbo/ Blower Champion. Tim knows how to win. His self-sponsored, (Tim O’Hare Custom Homes), 1968 Z-28 Camaro Pro Mod packs a 526 CI ERP Hemi with a Lenco drive. With crew Chief Bernie Day, and family Pat and Mike O’Hare wrenching, Tim, with a career best of 5.91 at 240mph, will be one to watch at the International Pro Mod Challenge.

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PMRA Article Courtesy PMRA Photo Credit: Brad Turk, Dave Erauw Photography ~ www.erauwphoto.com and Brennan Shortall ~ www.DragRaceCanada.com, Bill Mehlenbacher

Pro Modified Racing Association (PMRA) The Canadian Contenders


he Pro Modified Racing Association, www.PMRA.ca, was organized late in 2004, and the first race event was held in May of 2005. For 2013, the PMRA will provide the best in Pro Modified racing in its ninth consecutive season. Since its inception, the PMRA has grown in stature and popularity, and is one of the top Pro Modified drag racing series in North America, holding premier events throughout the race season to the delight of a solid race fan following. The PMRA is a self-governing organization with input from its teams, and adheres to the technical and safety rules as outlined by the National Hot Rod Association (NHRA) and the International Hot Rod Association (IHRA). Cars in the PMRA are the ultimate hot rods. Pro Modified cars are one of drag racing’s most exciting and colorful classes, offering a diverse group of race cars with 3,000-plus horsepower engines in supercharged, nitrous-powered, or turbocharged format. Mike Stawicki, a PMRA competitor and former Champion, presently holds both time and speed records in the organization, with a 5.739-second elapsed time, and a 255.75-mph speed. This inaugural event will pit the PMRA Pro Modifieds against the Northeast Outlaw Pro Mod Association (NEOPMA) in one of the biggest doorslammer races of the year for a purse of $30,000 in prize money. PMRA racers that plan to make the trek to Maryland include reigning PMRA champion Eric Latino of Whitby, Ontario, three-time champion Bruce Boland of Stoney Creek, Ontario, and present series points leader Rocky Di Lecce of Mississauga, Ontario. Also expecting to compete are Jack Grainy of Basom, New York, who is presently second in the 2013 points, Paolo Giust of Osgoode, Ontario, Steve Legere of Trois Rivieres, Quebec, Rob Atchison of London, Ontario, and Jeff Roth of New Dundee, Ontario. Presently fourth in points, Derek Hawker of Corbyville, Ontario is anticipated to make the trip to Maryland, as well as Sam Andreacchi of Toronto, Ontario, Jason Kalso of Clarkston, Michigan, and Tim Martin of Barrie, Ontario. Qualifying will be with two 16-cars fields, featuring a 16-car “‘International Pro Mod Challenge” with eight of Canada’s fastest PMRA Pro Pro Modifieds versus the NEOPMA’s eight fastest Pro Modifieds to Crown the first International Pro Mod Champion. NEOPMA will also have a second 16-car Pro Modified field featuring some of the fastest cars of this type on the planet. “There has already been a lot of talk between our teams about this upcoming event,” noted Bruce Mehlenbacher, Director of Operations for the PMRA. “We’re excited and honored to be a part of this historic race which will feature some of the best Pro Modifieds competing at a great facility.” Maryland International Raceway’s fans love doorslammer racing, and have built a great relationship with the NEOPMA for their ability to put on a great event with fast side by side quarter-mile drag racing, and open access to all teams and their pits. This is a great time for Pro Modified racers to join two of the fastest growing Associations. Visit www.neopma.com for more information on the Northeast Outlaw Pro Mod Association, and www.pmra.ca for information on the Canadian Pro Mod Series. Visit www.mirdrag.com for more information on Maryland International Raceway. For more information on the PMRA contact Bruce F. Mehlenbacher at Bruce@PMRA.ca


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Inaugural International Pro Mod Challenge

Rocky Di Lecce: Rocky Di Lecce out of Mississauga, Ontario and his 1968 Chevrolet Camaro with a 526 ci Brad Anderson supercharged Hemi currently sit in the number one spot in PMRA competition. Di Lecce comes from Outlaw Drag Racing where he won two Championships in a single year, and did so in two different countries while campaigning a 10.5-tire Chevelle. In 2013 Rocky and his team have been virtually unstoppable! Sponsors: Metro Infrastructure Inc. and Midway Automotive Website: www.metroinfrastructure.ca

Rocky Di Lecce

Jack Grainy: Jack Grainy of Grainy Brothers Racing pilots their 1967 Chevrolet Camaro with a Mike Stawicki Racing 526 cubic inch Veney supercharged Hemi powerplant. Racing since 1974, Grainy has the experience to get through any field of competition. Grainy Brothers Racing have been duking it out in PMRA action since 2005 and have numerous event wins and runner-up finishes to their credit. Sponsors: Niagara Auto and Grainy’s Automotive Website: www.grainysautomotive.com

Jack Grainy


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Bruce Boland: Bruce Boland with Team B & B Racing driving his latest “retirement from racing project”, a 1953 Chevrolet Corvette housing a 526-cube supercharged Hemi. Bruce started racing in 1975 and has an entire room full of awards and Championships to show for it. Boland is also three-time PMRA Champion! Sponsors: Backwoods Excavating & Float Service, Excel Motorsports, Pro Racing Fuels, NGK Spark Plugs, A&A Auto Parts and Double D Construction

Bruce Boland

Derek Hawker: Derek Hawker of Hawker Racing in their new ominous 1968 Pontiac Firebird with an Alan Johnson 481 cubic inch supercharged motor loaded into a Vanishing Point Race Cars chassis. When you least expect it… expect it, as Hawker’s motto is “All In”! With racing in his blood, Hawker started in Pro Mod just a few short years ago but made an instant impact in PMRA with round wins and a third place overall finish in 2012. Sponsors: Hawker Construction, Pennzoil and Empey Tire

Derek Hawker

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Inaugural International Pro Mod Challenge Eric Latino: Eric Latino and “Team Green” from Whitby, Ontario were the PMRA 2012 Champions and runnered-up in the series in 2011. Eric started racing in 1980 and is well known for his ability to control fast doorcars and not give in to the pressure that goes along with this form of high power racing. Eric now pilots the teams 1969 Chevrolet Camaro powered by a 521 cubic inch BAE Hemi supercharged with an Al Billes modified Kobelco K-11 14-71. Eric and Team Green have also raced with the NEOPMA series so things should interesting at the International Pro Mod Challenge!

Eric Latino

Sponsors: Redline Automotive, Don Butt Auto Body, Quality Plus Compressors, Global Emissions Systems Inc., Vibrant Performance, Ellesmere Fabricators Limited, NGK Spark Plugs, Hoosier Racing Tires, Pro Racing Fuels, Resurrection Custom Painting, ARK Compressor Parts, ifitsgotamotor.com, Kooks Headers and Kendall Motor Oil Website: www.redlinepd.com and www.gesi.ca

Rob Atchison: Rob Atchison of London, Ontario… his resume speaks for itself! Atchison, from a prominent Canadian racing family, is a multitime Alcohol Funny Car World Champion and is now piloting his 1963 Corvette split window coupe with a 526-inch Atchison Machine Service prepared Alan Johnson 481X Chevrolet engine topped off with a PSI supercharger. Interestingly, Rob still steps behind the wheel of the Funny Car every now and then too!

Rob Atchison

Sponsors: Atchison Machine Service, Pennzoil, Aeroquip, Clevite, NGK Spark Plugs, Permatex, Wiseco Performance Products and Jet Tools Special Thanks: Dave Bankes for all of his help Website: www.atchisonracing.com

Paolo Giust: Paolo Giust, of Osgood, Ontario, in his first year in the PMRA, is a former dragster driver and has been racing since 2004. He now pilots his incredible 1963 Corvette Stingray which is backed by a Brad Anderson 526 cubic inch supercharged Hemi from Ajax Engines to get the job done. Sponsors: Chew-That Pet Food & Accessories, Ottawa, ON and Clarmo Auto Repair, Metcalfe, ON

Paolo Giust


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Jay Santos Jay Santos: Jay Santos from Halton Hills, Ontario just can’t get enough drag racing! His most recent Cynergy Composites carbon fibre bodied 1969 Camaro is nothing short of stunning. With a pulse maintained by a Stawicki Racing Engines built 521 cubic inch billet Hemi supercharged with a CFH billet 14-71, you can bet that Santos can run the numbers on the long track! Jay started racing in 1978, but the past few years have been an incredible ride in Pro Mod for Santos and his tight knit team. Sponsors: Brampton Pallet Inc., J&M Recycling Inc., S&W Auto Inc., Marro Landscape & Concrete, Hea Landscaping & Design, Metcalfe Trailer Services Inc., Resolution Racing Services, G-Force Race Cars and Stawicki Racing Engines

Jeff Roth Jeff Roth: Jeff Roth from Kitchener, Ontario with his 1941 Willys housing an Alan Johnson 526 cubic inch Atchison Racing supercharged engine will be a force to reckon with. Jeff started his racing career in 1992 in the Junior Dragster class, moved up the ranks to where he would pilot an alcohol Funny Car, and then onto the wild world of Pro Modified. Roth finished fourth in the 2012 PMRA points standings. Sponsors: Oak Grove Cheese, Shellbourne Fuels and NGK Spark Plugs Website: www.jrothracing.ca

The Inaugural International Pro Mod Challenge... NEOPMA vs. PMRA, USA vs. Canada! Don’t miss the action at Maryland International Raceway, September 20 & 21, where all the talk stops and the fastest man or woman will be crowned the first ever International Pro Mod Champion. RPM Magazine, THE Voice Of Fast Cars WORLDWIDE

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NITRO IN THE NORTH Doorslammers, diggers and floppers, oh my!

Story & Photos By Brian Tyler

The Canadian Nitro Nationals Light Up Toronto Motorsports Park With Spectacular Action Packed Show


s the days were counting down on this years Nitro Nationals event at Toronto Motorsports Park, I looked back on last years event wondered how things might compare. Better? Worse? Different? Would the weather hold off? What about the car count? Would the nitro fumes make me cry like a baby...again? For the 2013 Nitro Nationals, the answers were Bigger and Badder with beautiful


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sunny skies; insane car count, and thanks to a wind blowing down track, no nitro tears! For the very lucky drag racing fans who would attend this years event, there would be no let downs. The Nitro show featured the Top Fuel Dragsters of Scott Palmer and Paton Racing, as well as 4 Nitro Funny cars and 2 very cool Nostalgia Nitro Floppers. A total of 8 nitro gulping machines would be on the

property for the weekend, alongside the NDRA Alcohol Funny Car series, PMRA Pro Modified series and supporting NAPA Quick 32 sportsman series and Wiseco Pro Bike & Sled series. If that is not enough the Shockwave Jet Truck big rig was in the house along with Lou Pereira’s wicked fast Terminator Jet Dragster to light up the night skies!

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Added on to the already impressive line up to this years event were the NDRA Pro Doorslammers, a group of nasty, 6 second rides ranging in shape and size from Gary Mater’s slick ’37 Chevy to Al Martorino’s blown GT500 in classic Shelby livery, lined up alongside the new Canadian Outlaw 10.5 Association who would be running their second event of 2013 with a group of dedicated local racers and a couple friends from south of the border. The festivities began Friday night with all pro classes hitting the lanes for their first qualifying hits of the weekend. Most notable, 10.5 racer John Carinci would make waves Friday night in his Matte Black Trans Am running a blistering 4.20 second 1/8th mile pass, but would hurt his rear axle and cause a lengthy clean up of the track surface. Carinci and his team would thrash on the car getting it ready to rock for Saturday’s qualifying rounds and continue to fend off the competition at the top of the O/L 10.5 ladder. Photo p28: Canadian Todd Lesenko would run his CN sponsored Nitro Funny Car for the first time in his home country. Lesenko is currently the only Canadian piloting an NHRA Nitro Funny Car in the series. Photos, from top: In Top Fuel Dragster, Scott Palmer had to deal with Todd Paton in front of his home crowd and did so by showing the Canadian fans what 8,000 horsepower sounds like as it screams down the track at wide open throttle! It was an old school Ford vs. Dodge match race as the nostalgia nitro ‘Pony Up’ Mustang met up with the ‘Chi-Town Hustler’. What is not to love about a match race between these two heavyweights!!

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Saturday was the big show though, and the heads-up program started early for 3 rounds of pro cars and would run wide open throttle until well into the evening. As the Nitro cars were called to the lanes for the 1st runs, darn near every seat and standing room area both in the bleachers on the tower side, as well as lining the patio at the Black Cat Pub were full, showing all in attendance that Canadian Drag Racing is alive and well. And the Canadian Nitro Nationals did not disappoint! In Nitro Funny Car action Del Worsham was matched against Canada’s own Todd Lesenko (in the newly CN wrapped Mopar) and Jack Wyatt up against Dale Creasy Jr. For Top Fuel Dragster Scott Palmer took on Canada’s favorite nitro family Paton Racing, and of course the Chi-Town Hustler was set to mix it up with the Pony Up Mustang in Nostalgia nitro mayhem!

Photo Courtesy Mitchell Brown

The most memorable nitro experience of the weekend had to be seeing Todd Paton return to driving the family Top Fueler after a considerable amount of time away from the seat, then making it look easy as he put down the best runs of the night. The Paton’s are close to the hearts of TMP fans as they grew up just down the road. Todd Paton returns from an incredible run in front of a packed house at Toronto Motorsports Park! With a line up like the Nitro Nationals had, how could you expect anything other than standing room only, and even that was full! Two-time Nitro Funny Car Champion Dale Creasy Jr. made the haul from Chicago to Canada to go head to head with Jack Wyatt, and both drivers put on a great show for fans.

MAHLE Clevite products have been on board every single NASCAR® race winner since its beginning in 1948. But even we realize the true lifeblood of auto racing is on any short track on a Friday or Saturday night across the nation. This is the arena where today’s gladiators battle for supremacy - and we are proud to support them. As long as grassroots racing continues to breathe life into asphalt or dirt, our commitment to quality under the hood remains strong. www.mahleclevite.com





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Cruising the pits between rounds, fans can get up close and personal with the hard working teams, watching crew members overhaul valve trains, bottom ends, swapping transmissions, even engines, all done within the relatively small confines of a pit stall. This accessibility of the cars, drivers and crew is unheard of in other sports that compete on this level, but make no mistake, when the 2nd yellow bulb is lit, it’s all business. Rocky Di Lecce meant business all weekend and would dominate the PMRA Pro Mod ¼-mile competition and wheel his ’68 Camaro to a record setting 4th victory in as many events this season, a PMRA series record. Di Lecce and crew would take both the low ET and top speed of the weekend, qualifying at the top of the ladder with a 6.076 @ 240.83 mph. Di Lecce would make his way through eliminations and line up against Derek Hawker in his sharp ’68 Firebird. Hawker would chop down the tree with a .009 light, but Rocky would outrun him to the stripe running a 6.102 @ 241.22 trap speed. In the NDRA classes, St. Thomas,Ontario’s Ron Bankes took his 2002 Firebirdbodied Alcohol Funny Car to victory lane after besting 2012 Champion Larry Dobbs. The

The pits at a drag race can be as much fun as the racing! From top: The Creasy pit crew mount the body and prepare for another hit, while the Jack Wyatt gang complete final checks before they both meet for round two. Right: Ron Bankes takes his first NDRA Alcohol Funny Car win in 2013.

Nitro Nationals victory marked Bankes’ 1st victory of the 2013 season, and has certainly made him a competitor for the 2013 series championship. In the NDRA Pro Doorslammer class, Dave Earhart would run a 6.68 second pass in Sunday’s final round, taking out Jerry Ransford in his ’03 Pontiac Grand Am and putting the Earhart Heating and Cooling sponsored F-Body into 4th place in the Pro Doorslammer standings. In the budding Outlaw 10.5 class, the field would be bolstered by two south of the border entires fielded by Tom Kempf of Commerce, MI as well as Maryland small-block bad boy Tim Essick. The two Americans would give the local boys a run for the money, qualifying 2nd and 3rd with a 4.29 hit for Essick and Kempf close behind with a 4.31 et. Though the full Photos, from top: Current PMRA points leader and undefeated for 2013 driver Rocky Di Lecce would dominate the competition for the fourth time in as many races. NDRA Pro Doorslammer standout Dave Earhart, shown here lining up against Michigan’s Jerry Ransford, takes a commanding lead in points with a win at the Nitro Nats. To be the man, you gotta beat the man, and nobody could beat this guy, this weekend. Carinci would put the Bad Bird in the winners circle come Sunday afternoon in Outlaw 10.5. New to Outlaw 10.5 Wayde Mahoney hangs the hoops on his fox body Mustang coupe. Wayde has sold his current motor and will be fitting a whopping 935 cubic inch beast between the rails, jumping into Outlaw drag racing with both feet!!


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Photos, from top left: After a terrible crash and fire in 2011, Eddie Timal is back in action in his twin turbo, big block C5 Corvette. Mike West prepares for battle in his Nitrous assisted Chevy Nova. Mike was getting some kinks worked out of the car, spraying only 1 system, with 1 more plumbed and ready to rock. Competitors: you have been warned! Tim Essick of Essick Motorsports came to play in his twin-turbocharged small block Mustang. Above: Michigan’s Tom Kempf catches a green light and puts it up on the bars thanks to a Precision boosted, LSx based powerplant that would put him deep in the 4.30s in qualifying. Below: Racer and tuner Rob Zarcone would yank the tires on this pass in his stunning ProCharger powered 1st Gen Camaro.

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Outlaw field would do their best, no one could stop the Carinci freight train who would recover from Friday’s rear end troubles and park the Bad Bird in the winners circle. Recent RPM feature driver Nick Agostino would suffer some serious bad luck on Sunday when his Camaro would get loose and stuff the right side into the wall, damaging the entire side of the car. Nick would get to work almost immediately assessing damage, getting parts ordered and getting things ready to rock and roll for the upcoming Canadian Street Car Nationals, then the YellowBullet Nationals the following weekend. The Saturday evening show saw two appearances of the Shockwave Jet Truck and the Terminator Jet Dragster, but their final runs under the lights had the entire place lit up like Christmas!

Photo Courtesy Ray Knight

The hard work and dedication from all teams, drivers and track officials means the world to the die hard fans who head to the track to meet with friends and watch some wild hot rods get down the 1320’ (or 660’). Many thanks to the team at Toronto Motorsports Park for a safe place for the racers to run, and to the racers who came from far and near to put on the show. We can’t wait until next years race! If one jet engine wasn’t enough, how about 3? The ‘Shockwave’ jet powered semi makes approximately 36,000 horsepower (yes, you read that right!) and burns roughly 180 gallons of fuel per pass! The ‘Terminator’ jet dragster prepares to rocket down the quarter mile. Lou Pereira has run a personal best of 5.11 seconds at a blistering 311 miles per hour!!

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The BIG DOG Still Has Bite! A Day In The Life Of A BIG DOG Pro Mod Drag Racer Story & Photos by

Benoit Pigeon

Over this past winter I became very intrigued by the “Big Dog Shootout� drag race events. They take place once a month at Piedmont Dragway in North Carolina, are unique for Pro Modified cars, and despite similar races over the years, the real Big Dog is only held at this particular track.


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Back in the late eighties, I had the chance to witness a race at Shuffletown, near Charlotte, where racers like Ed Hoover, Scotty Cannon and Rob Vandergriff where present. It is hard to believe that that day is already some 24 years in the past, but the memories are vivid, as if they happened only yesterday.

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BIG DOG Meeting a few local racers at a car show this past winter and learning we had a number of Pro Mods nearby, those memories and the excitement of these unique fast doorslammers was rekindled. I soon learned about the Big Dog Shootout races in NC from some individuals who are very passionate about their racing, and immediately I knew that this was something I needed to get involved in. While RPM has covered Big Dog events and racers over the years I wanted to take a different approach, from my own perspective. I guess it was probably the realization that the Big Dog venue, Piedmont Dragway, which at the time I knew nothing about, would in all likelihood be 1/8th-mile and be as close to my first Pro Mod experience as I would ever get. After a little search on the net, I found Piedmont, and experienced it through track photographer Gary Rowe’s eyes. There it was, exactly as I had imagined, and seeing this track and the Big Dog event photos did indeed bring back my Shuffletown experience! Now let me tell you, Shuffletown was not just about the cars, it was the crowd, the aura, the place itself, everything was just sort of magic during a time when Pro Mods were not really even born yet and these fastest of the fast doorslammers were still considered Top Sportsman cars. It was sort of like entering the track gate and finding yourself in another world. Maybe it was the fact that I had come from Europe, but it is that track that turned me into a Pro Mod fan for sure. At this point I knew that I had to see and experience the Big Dog for myself. After a colorful early spring of race photography at various tracks, I finally got my chance to visit Piedmont. For me it had to be a special experience, so I decided to see if I could follow a Pro Mod race team to the track, shadow the team throughout the day, and write about the experience. I contacted Junior Ward in south west Virginia and plans were made to go to the next race in July to follow them and their Corvette Pro Mod at the Big Dog Shootout. If the name sounds familiar, it should. Junior runs New London Dragstrip, an IHRA 1/8 mile track in Lynchburg, VA, and on top of his own Pro Modified racing concerns, he also drives Jim Oddy’s Willys Gasser a few times each year. Generally, the Big Dog Shootout races are held the first Thursday of every month, but as it turned out our first attempt was cancelled due to rain, as was the following Thursday. Finally, we were able to make the project work on the rescheduled date of July 18th. When I arrived at Junior’s, the tow rig was warmed up and we hit the road near 11:00am. Inside the Freightliner is a kitchenette and a sleeper that can hold a large crew, but for this event we were just going for the day.

We were one of the first Pro Mods at Piedmont Dragway that day and as soon as we parked we went to work on getting the Corvette out of the trailer. RPM Magazine, THE Voice Of Fast Cars WORLDWIDE

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BIG DOG As we were leaving the mountains, getting closer to North Carolina, the sky got cloudy but no rain this time through. The trip took us just 2 ½ hours and we were one of the first Pro Mod teams there. Once the rig was parked, the car was quickly taken out and set-up along side of it. Minor maintenance was completed which was followed by a warm-up. For the Big Dog Shootout, racers are allowed one shakedown run before 4:00pm, which this team took advantage of by having the car to the line thirty minutes before the deadline. They base their tuneup for this initial test hit on track temps and the weather at that particular hour from their weather station. The Corvette is in the left lane and Junior, after his burn out, is quick into the staging beams at the starting line. By this time, none other than Jim Oddy, who helps on the car, has arrived and is directing Junior at the line. It is a simple process and Jim steps back fairly quickly. While it is my first time witnessing Junior driving his own car, in seeing him drive others I have always been impressed by his precision and timing from the moment the engine gets started to the time he gets into the beams. Everyone pitches in to get the Corvette pushed out. The team sets up the pit area. Everyone has a job and knows what it is. Once everything is up and the car is out in front of the trailer the preparation for the shakedown pass begins. Billy Triplett works up front while Mike Gray works at the rear of the car (lower left photo). Junior explains, “First thing out of the trailer we just check things over then warm it up. After warm up we always check the valve lash and valve spring pressure and then we fill it with alchohol and go out for a test hit.” Below: Once everything is checked, the Vette is buttoned up and they are ready to go.


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More Power. More Control. MORE WINS... 2.0


Over Any Other EFI System. New 2.0 features are now standard on all newly purchased XFI™ units


The XFI 2.0 Opens New Doors When It Comes To Power Adders And Hardcore Drag Racing Performance. After listening to professional racers, FAST™ engineers designed the revolutionary XFI 2.0™ with the functions, capabilities and adjustability needed to give hardcore racing applications a winning edge. The advanced forced induction, power adder and race controls include two separate, fully programmable sequential rev limiters for staging or boost building with six options for activation, four priority assignments and a user selectable VHTXHQWLDORUUDQGRPPRGHRIUHYOLPLWLQJ$GYDQFHGVRIWZDUHDQGIDVWHUSURFHVVLQJVSHHGPHDQVQRPRUHĂ DW spots in the power curve or settling for “close enough.â€? With a revolutionary new self-learning auto tuning VE WDEOHRSWLRQWKLVLVWKHRQH(),V\VWHPZLWKWKHIHDWXUHVDQGFDSDELOLWLHVQHHGHGWRĂ€QHWXQHOLNHQHYHUEHIRUH

ADDITIONAL FEATURES: User Adjustable Battery Voltage Injector Opening Correction Table




Spark vs. Coolant Temp Offset Table

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User Configurable Target Air Fuel Offset Table vs. Coolant Temp Table Improved On-Board Diagnostics

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BIG DOG Unfortunately, this much needed test pass is aborted shortly after the Corvette leaves the starting line as the car goes into “tire shake”. Tire shake in drag racing is an interesting animal, with many different schools of thought on it. Best described as the tire trying to run over itself and often referred to as “the tire going square”, tire shake is one huge problem in big tire Pro Mod cars with tons of horsepower (often 2,500-3,000hp). We’ve heard drivers describe it as having your body tossed around in a paint shaker, or having your teeth shaken to the point where fillings fly out, but no matter how you look at it, the challenge is to get the power to match the race surface and avoid tire shake altogether… easier said than done though I’m afraid. The Corvette makes it back to the pit area for the regular checks and maintenance. Jumior explains, “after we come back we pull all the data out of the Racepack computer and decide what The Corvette was built in 2001 for Jim Oddy with Fred Hahn as the driver, and it won several world championships. Later it was sold to Robert Jootson in Sweden where it was lightly wrecked and then shipped back to the States to Oddys shop. That’s where Junior found it, bought it and fixed it at his shop. It currently has a 526 Chevrolet motor with a Keith Black block and Big Chief heads topped by a Chuck Ford billet blower built by Troy Critchley. It is backed up by a Neal Chance converter and a Bruno-Lenco transmission. “Sonny (Leonard) is my father in law,” Junior adds. “He does all the machine work for me and Billy Triplet and I build the engine in our shop. Jim Oddy does all of the tuning and Ray Williams calls all the shots on the chassis.”


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9:20 @ 145 mph 2010 Ford Mustang, driven by Gary Richard

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Left, in the hot and humid Corvette cockpit, Junior collects his thoughts before the next run. Above: The car is started, and heads into the burnout box. Jim Oddy (below) has finished backing Junior up after his burnout and puts him into the staging beams.

changes we need to make for the first round of qualifying, wich is usually timing or fuel curves and such. Jim Oddy makes that call and Ray will come in and check the shock graph and decide whether we need to make a wheelie bar adjustment before next round”. With the time between rounds, I took the opportunity to walk around and investigate more of the track’s infrastructure, which is when I realized that Piedmont was everything I had expected, and more! It is bigger, or at least has a “bigger” feel to it. Racers have plenty of asphalt for pits, the restrooms are better then even some of the top facilities I’ve visited, and the track has a Disney Land looking shuttle for spectators. I realized at that point that this is no Shuffletown, but in fact this IS the capitol of doorslammers, just as they advertise, and it sure looks and feels the part! There are plenty of people involved in running this facility and it has a friendly atmosphere. It is pretty amazing to see all these legends at this mid-week one day (more precisely “one evening”) event, and I can easily spot, Pat Musi, Roy Hill, Ed Hoover, and of course we have Oddy on the team and Sonny Leonard himself in Jr’s pit. Back to the car and getting ready for Qualifier #1. The cars are allowed 2 qualifying runs before the 8-car field is set for eliminations. This day, it’s hot and very humid and when we get to the lanes Junior puts the remainder of his racing suit on then gets strapped into the car. Our car is in the left lane again. It’s tough because the car is black and the sun is even lower now, meaning I’ll shoot pictures 42

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The launch looks good off the hit of the throttle, the Vette is going straight and making power, at half track though there is a problem. In eighth-mile Pro Mod drag racing it all happens fast and on this run there is oil all over the engine and windshield, so something gave out.

directly against it. But I’m just a witness here and will make the best of the shadow the tower gives me. In fact, my situation is nothing compared to what is about to happen to our driver. The Corvette makes a nice start and looks good, but at about halftrack the windshield on driver side gets covered with oil. The Corvette is a fighter though and takes the 4th position in qualifying, but this is it, the day is over in just two runs. RPM Magazine, THE Voice Of Fast Cars WORLDWIDE


A disappointed Junior Ward being towed back to the pits with an oil sprayed windshield. Above, everybody pitches in on the clean-up. A week after the race Junior told us, “it dropped a valve on that pass... we are going to build a Hemi!

Back at the trailer everyone worked on cleaning the engine and surrounding areas of oil, it’s literally everywhere. This race is so short that there is no time for any repairs, so while a quick inspection reveals a loose rocker arm and dropped pushrod, we will only know what the full damage is when we get back to the shop. There are a lot of empty feelings while accessing the situation. There are no words to exchange, we all know this is it. But to add a positive twist to the day, it is Sonny Leonard’s birthday and there is cake and food served up reviving the team around the trailer. It’s packing time, we’re heading home early and hit the road close to 7:00pm. The race will continue into the evening and the grandstands will shortly be packed with eager spectators as the sun sets and the cooler evening air comes in. The good news for this team is that this was just their first race of what’s going to be a very long racing weekend. As we arrive back home in Virginia, we all help get the Corvette out of the trailer and load Jim Oddy’s Gasser into it. Unfortunately, the trip ends


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there for me, but some of the guys are heading straight away to Ohio, and by Sunday that weekend I had heard they won that race with Junior at the wheel! As for my new Pro Mod memories? Unfortunately we left too early to see much of the crowd, but even in our short time there my Pro Mod fire was ignited once again, and the Big Dog Shootout is definitely the place to keep it burning. The track is certainly wider than I envisioned and the entire facility blew me away by its size and evident upkeep. So to a newcomer to the Big Dog Shootout experience, like the title says, the Big Dog still has bite!

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Going EXTREME In 2013 An insane cruise night with some of the fastest street machines in the country, then a heads-up no-holds-barred grudge race... it can’t get any better than that!

Story & Photos By Brian Hansen

Photography By Pete Ores

Once Again The RPM/Lucas Oil Extreme Event Presented By Mickey Thompson Thrills Thousands Of Fast Street Car Fans! RPM Magazine, THE Voice Of Fast Cars WORLDWIDE

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Going EXTREME In 2013 The second stop for the 2013 RPM/Lucas Oil Extreme Events Presented By Mickey Thompson was again the much anticipated 5th annual 10” Wide Racing Extreme Street Machine Shootout, and it once again proved that the street car scene is alive and well! Even with the threat of severe weather over 50 serious street machines from all over the United States, and even Canada, made the pilgrimage for the two day event that was held July 19th & 20th. Plus, fans were treated to dozens more hardcore race machines all weekend long! On Friday participants fueled up their hot rods and cruised to the legendary Gus’s Drive-in for an evening of food, fun and lots of bench racing! Then on Saturday morning they headed over to Great Lakes Dragaway to race down the legendary track that has been in operation since 1955. For anyone who’s into really fast street cars, this was one event that you wouldn’t want to miss! Cruise to Gus’s Drive-In

Hailing from Platteville Colorado, Matt Frost had just finished building his new 1967 Nova before loading it up and heading for Wisconsin. The 426ci small block combination sports a pair of 70mm turbochargers and once this 2800-pound terror is sorted out it should put the Deuce in the 7’s. Keep an eye out for a full feature on this car in an upcoming issue of RPM.

Located in the small town of East Troy, Wisconsin Gus’s DriveIn has become known all over the world for its “Extreme” cruise night that is held the third weekend in July. What started out as a small gathering of genuine 8-second street cars back in 2006 has grown into an event that’s captured the imagination of racers, and fans, alike. When most car cruises around the country feature mainly stock, or mildly modified musclecars, Gus’s Drive-In is packed with parachute-equipped street machines of all makes and models that are capable of running 8’s, or even 7’s, in the ¼-mile! The Match Race With much of the sport of drag racing often revolving around the almighty dollar, we decided to shake things up a bit and once again do a good old-fashioned best two-out-of-three match race. Mark Pappas brought out the 1972 #10 Vega that was once raced by the legendary Bill “Grumpy” Jenkins. As current owner Mark Pappas commented, “This is not a clone but the real deal car that revolutionized the Pro Stock class. The 331 cubic inch small block was actually one of the last engines that Bill built before he passed away March 29, 2012 at the age of 81. During the years leading up to 2012 I became good friends with Bill and I’m honored to carry on his legacy through showing the Grumpy’s X Vega at select events like this year’s RPM Magazine Extreme Event.”


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There was no prize money or points on the line… just bragging rights! Participants were paired up Friday evening at Gus’s Drive-In based on their vehicles performance potential and ran heads-up down the ¼-mile at Great Lakes Dragaway (Union Grove, Wisconsin) the following day. Even though the temperature topped out in the low 90’s many racers actually set personal best ET’s during the race.

Shawn Fink came all the way from Wyoming and put on quite a show for the fans. Rowing through the gears of his JEFFco backed turbocharged 400 small block, Shawn had the fans on their feet with 1/8th mile burnouts. During this particular pass the Nova wagon hooked so hard that the cable for one of the parachutes popped loose causing the left chute to fall out of the bag just past the starting line. Shawn was not aware that he had laundry following him down the track and stayed in it all the way to the finish line. Even with the one chute out he still ran 8.50 @ 136mph!

While Gus Athanasopoulos (owner of Gus’s Drive-In) helped make Root beer floats for the crowds of thirsty customers, Emily Prange was busy signing up new subscribers for RPM Magazine.

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After two years of banter on the internet, the “Farm Trucks” from Wisconsin finally line up. Brian Schimmel’s 1955 “Hillbilly” Chevy has been a regular competitor at past RPM Extreme Events and newcomer Matt Miller finally brought out his purpose-built-tokick-the-Hillybilly-trucks-ass 1949 Chevy pickup to mix it up with Schimmel. Powered by a 540 ci big block Chevy with twin 76mm turbos Miller mustered up two solid wins against Schimmel whose truck was experiencing nitrous solenoid issues. There’s a rematch already in the works so stay tuned to see who will emerge victorious at next year’s event! As you can see, Miller certainly came loaded for bear and had his sights set a target on Brian Schimmel’s Chevy pickup truck. Miller’s ‘49 may have been a little rough on the outside but the big Chevy mill, which took up every bit of real estate under the truck’s massive hood, was an engineering masterpiece.


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The “other” side of Gus’s Drive-In had just as much badass iron lined up two deep. Even fans who came out to enjoy the show drove their hot rods, so walking through the parking lot across the street can be a show in itself!


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Land of the giants! Crowds of people poured into Gus’s Drive-In to see one of the greatest collections of street machines ever assembled in one place. And as a bonus there is always a number of race cars in the house to round out the show. The lot was packed with cool cars ranging from John Grinwald’s nostalgic altered wheel base 65' Dodge and 64' Ford Thunderbolt to street cars that are capable of running in the 8’s or better. Pretty much any Chevy you could think of with most any engine combination imaginable along with Mopars and Fords that lit up the town with thunder as they rolled in. As in past years cars are lined up parachute-to-parachute under the canopy for a photo shoot once the neon lights come on at dusk. You can see above that we ran out of canopy space on both sides quickly and the cars continue in every open space on the property. As one spectator commented, “It’s almost surreal seeing this many fast cars all in one place other than at a dragstrip. We were here last year and brought a bunch of friends back with us this year so that they could experience this spectacle.”

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Watching the cars leave Gus’s seems to be a major attraction for fans as they gather in packs to witness these incredible machines take to the street... and it get’s even better when the sun goes down! From top left: Missouri’s Blake Hugh and the guys at 417 Motorsports burned the midnight oil to get their “no-paint” 1962 Nova done for the event. Hugh’s new car features a 370ci LSX engine with twin 62 mm Precision turbos, weighs in at 3400 lbs and even has air conditioning! Mark Viso’s 1969 Chevelle with a centrifugally supercharged BBC is ultra cool and drew a big crowd as it rumbled out of Gus’s lot. Craig Budd’s 1927 Model T Ford was hands down the most unique vehicle in the bunch. Packing a 400 ci small block Chevy with twin turbochargers, this wild ride wheelied its way to a string of low nine second ET’s on Mickey Thompson DOT tires during the match races.

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Above: Darce Laws brought his 1965 Oldsmobile 442 all the way from Casper Wyoming. The 400 ci small block Chevy features an 88mm Precision Turbo which has helped propel the 3600 pound Olds to 8.80’s in the ¼-mile on little 28 x 10.5” slicks. Another impressive performer of the event was Terry Miller ’s 436 small block powered Firebird. Weighing in at a hefty 3600 pounds, Terry’s nitrous assisted Pontiac ran a best of 8.62 @ 160 through the mufflers and has covered the 60’ in 1.17 seconds…amazing! Left: One of the true sleepers at the event was Greg Edward’s 2002 Chevy Camaro that is powered by an all-aluminum 427 SBC with twin 76mm Turbonetic turbochargers. Weighing in at 3740 with Greg behind the wheel he has run 8.30’s @ 170mph on M/T Drag Radials. Impressive to say the least! CONTINUED ON PAGE 72

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Story By

Jim Sutherland

Photos by

Jim Sutherland

Additional Photos Courtesy

The Baraniuk Family


t seems appropriate that a famous western Canadian ¼-mile car should be called Old Trapper, because this legendary 1967 Plymouth GTX SS/B track rocket was pure Canuck, with a lot of help from its Ramcharger friends in Detroit. Just as an old trapper would have felt right at home in the Canadian wilderness during the late 60s, this Old Trapper felt right at home on a Canadian drag strip back then as well. The first time Jim Baraniuk encountered Old Trapper was during time trials at a drag strip in 1968. Jim watched the legendary 1967 Hemi Plymouth GTX blow by his 1968 Roadrunner on the ¼-mile so fast that Jim should have just sat in the stands with the rest of the spectators at Shepherd Raceway in Calgary Alberta Canada. The image of the powerful Plymouth made a huge impression on Jim because he vowed that “one day he was going to own that car.” That “one day” would be a long way in the future for Jim, and he finally became the proud owner of Old Trapper in 2003.

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Back in the sixties Super Stock drag racing had fans going wild, as evidenced by the packed stands in this vintage photo supplied by the Baraniuk family. Big motors with big power resulted in lots of wheelies and wild rides down the quarter-mile. In this photo, Old Trapper squares off against one of the many famous Melrose Missile Plymouths.

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Jim’s road to Old Trapper’s ownership was one of those long and winding roads as negotiations actually began in 1978, when the second owner of the car visited Jim to see if he had any extra Mopar parts. The man’s name was Ken Edwards and he struck up a friendship with Jim because both men were true Mopar fanatics, and quickly realized the common bond of interest in the Chrysler brand of street warriors. However, the common bond meant both men were well aware of the history of Old Trapper and they both knew the car was a one of a kind legend for any Mopar fan who followed Super Stocks during the late 60s in western Canada and parts of the United States. Old Trapper was originally purchased by Alberta Canada enthusiast and Mopar fan Jim Ronaghan. Jim was the man who picked up the car from the assembly plant in Windsor Ontario and immediately took the factory Hemi Plymouth to Detroit for a little magic from the legendary Ramcharger racing shop in Motown.

This car is about as innocent and unmolested as it gets, even under the hood. It is cool to see the Hemi in all its glory with original intake and dual carbs sitting up top and the funcational ram air system that jambs fresh air into them. How about that blue thing in the foreground of the shot below? Yes, it’s a vintage “cool can”, now disconnected it once had fuel lines running through it and was filled with ice to keep the gas cool.

A factory Elephant was a beautiful thing on its own in 1967. A Ramcharger upgrade to a Super Stock engine and suspension configuration was the kind of makeover that made it beautifully unbeatable on the track, and irresistible to Old Trapper’s first owner, as well as its future owner Jim Baraniuk. One man named Jim owned it in 1968 and another man named Jim wanted it in 1968. Love at first sight would be the correct way to describe both men’s reaction when it came to the legendary 1967 Plymouth GTX. Old Trapper was the only Canadian car to even qualify for the 1968 Super Stock World finals in Tulsa Oklahoma, and it got there

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In the fully decked out GTX cockpit of the once feared Hemi Mopar it is as though time has stood still. This is the real deal, not a restoration or a replica, this is the “Old Trapper�. The jacket hanging on the front seat of Old Trapper belonged to its driver Dick Panter, a fitting tribute in such a worthy piece of racing history, let alone Canadian motorsports history.


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a quarter mile at a time that season, including that first time Jim Baraniuk laid eyes on the Plymouth as it flew on by him on the Calgary track back in ‘68. The Hemi powered GTX finished first in the 1968 SS/B Division 6 North point standings and earned its way to the big showdown in Tulsa town that year. In fact, Old Trapper’s best time on the ¼-mile NHRA circuit was registered at a Division 6 North meet at Seattle’s Arlington Drag Strip in ’68 when driver Albert Branham did an 11.10 at 125.87 mph run. It was very important to Jim Baraniuk for people to know he was only the self-described “caretaker” of the famous car when Jim finally became its owner. Baraniuk was always quick to point out that the real credit for Old Trapper’s fame belonged to its first owner, the late Jim Ronaghan and its drivers, Albert Branham and Dick Panter. Not a fancied up high-tech machine, the Belvedere has been kept as close as possible to the way it was raced back in the sixties and seventies. And in honor of their father Jim Baraniuk, the original owner Jim Ronaghan, and the historic value of the car itself, the Baraniuk family plans to keep it that way. We noticed the “HEMI” painted in black on the deep oil pan and immediately knew we had to share this picture with readers. When you first see this your mind starts to wander back in time to imagine the intimidation factor something like this creates, not to mention the fans loved seeing it when the car was up in a wild wheelie!

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Unfortunately Jim Baraniuk passed away in 2009, but his favorite car remains in his family because they understood how much Old Trapper meant to him. His son Dave summed up his father’s feelings; “He never liked to brag, but he sure was proud of it when he got it.” Every car

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guy in the world can understand why Jim was so happy when he got his dream car. We discovered the iconic car at a major show that featured a downtown cruise which had over a thousand vehicles cruising old style on Main Street. Old Trapper stood out like a sore thumb, even in this large crowd, and we were drawn to it because of its old school brute force appearance and real-world race heritage. This Plymouth was the real deal and its appearance on the street was a rare event these days, so we were very fortunate to cross paths with it.

Above: In front of a packed house at the 1968 NHRA World Finals in Tulsa Oklahoma Old Trapper pulls to the line. Check out the TV cameraman on the right filming every bit of it! Below: A few years later the muscular Mopar warrior got a trick set of Cragar wheels to ride on.

These days Old Trapper spends most of its time out of the spotlight with the Baraniuk family as a pampered and semi-retired legacy to a husband and father who loved Mopars and racing. Jim’s wife Irene is the current owner of Old Trapper and Irene has always known how much the car meant to her late husband. She was happy to share the car’s history with us and we could tell that Irene, along with her son Dave, also have a fondness for the Plymouth because of its close association with Jim. The car has full headers and still has a deep oil pan that runs very close to the pavement so the family chooses not to drive it on the street often, even though it is now legally registered for the road. The important part of the equation for the Baraniuk family is to preserve the car in exactly the same configuration as Jim kept it. Jim respected its race heritage so he left the battle scars on Old Trapper, he understood that you do not mess with history when it comes to a


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track warrior. The car looks and sounds just as it did when it was rolling up to the lights on a drag strip in 1968. This Plymouth is loud and proud. Old Trapper may not be ripping up the track anymore, but it will always finish first in the hearts of Jim Baraniuk’s family and all of us gearheads young and old who understand that we need to know where we’ve been to get to where we’re going. We found this catch at a large car show in western Canada just sitting innocently along the show route parked with its hood up and sign out front, and then later that day wandering the streets. Although it does not see much street duty, it is licensed for the road and goes out for the odd special occasion, after all it is still a race prepared Hemi under the hood! For those savvy enough to know what they are looking at the Old Trapper Hemi powered Super Stock 1967 Belvedere GTX is an exciting adventure in cool racing history, for everyone else young and old, it is still one cool car! To follow the adventures of photojournalist Jim Sutherland online visit w w w.mystarcollectorcar.com

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It’s Saturday... time to put up or shut up!

Top: As racing gets underway a trio of Chevy’s gets lined up in the staging lanes at Great Lakes Dragaway on Saturday for their match races. Ward Steinmann’s Malibu convertible is powered by a nitrous fed 406 ci small block while Bueter and Young’s Camaro’s are both packing nearly 600ci of big block Chevy between the frame rails! All three are capable of going deep in the 8’s at will. Check out how staright and clean Rick Bueter’s Camaro launches!

This unassuming little 1993 Mustang Coupe owned by Rob Centner shocked everyone when it ran effortless mideight second ET’s thanks to a 347 small block Ford with twin 66mm turbos. So, the moral of the story is, don’t believe everything you read… like Rob’s “NINE SEC” front license plate!

Matt Sathre’s Mustang was a real ground pounder with its stout 632ci big block Chevy. No power adder was needed for him to click off mid-eight second ET’s.


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Ken Ivaska heats up the Mickey Thompson 29.5 x 10.5W slicks prior to making another 8 second pass in his hard charging 1967 Oldsmobile! This car is absolutely stunning and it was purchased 32 years ago, before Ken even had his drivers license and he has no intentions of ever selling his beloved Cutlass.

Not something you see everyday, an 8-second street driven Mopar vs. an 8-second street driven Olds. One of the most anticipated races of the weekend was between John Hunkins’ 1969 Plymouth Road Runner and Ivaska’s 442. Both cars have run mid-eights so it was a real driver’s drag race. After three rounds it was Ken’s 4,600 pound 442 that came out on top.

Joe Barry’s 1956 Chevy was featured in RPM Magazine back in the April issue so when it was announced that Joe would traveling all the way from Colorado Springs, Colorado to Wisconsin hordes of hot rodders showed up to see this incredible machine in person. The consummate showman had fans on their feet with smokey 1/8th-mile long burnouts before every pass!


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8-oh’s! Chris Williams El Camino has also been a regular at previous RPM Extreme Events and is capable of running high 7’s with a single turbocharged small block Chevy. Bryant Goldstone hauled his Big-Block powered 1970 Chevelle up from Osceola, Indiana to do a little match racing this year and ended up running Williams. After lining up three times against each other it was Chris William’s who took the win with a final round pass of 8.10 @ 176mph!

Another car that was just finished up days prior to the cruise & match race was Wisconsin’s Jerry Young’s incredible 3700 pound 1968 Camaro that is powered by a 572 big block with a NX Fogger system. On one of its maiden voyage passes at Great Lakes Dragaway Jerry laid down an impressive 8.62 @155mph ET on Mickey Thompson Pro 275 Radials.

Holy Hook! Tony Jarrell just finished up his stunning 1966 Chevelle before this year’s event. During the second round race against Kevin Moore’s 1969 Chevelle the Mickey Thompson radials took too good of a bite on the track and the welds holding the ladder bar suspension to the rear-end housing broke loose! Photographer Pete “Boomer” Ores ran for cover has Jarrell’s car came right at the cement guardrail that he was standing behind.

With another successful event under our belts, plans are already in the works for next year’s RPM Extreme Event and we promise that it will be even bigger and better than this year! 10” Wide Racing www.10wideracing.com will be releasing a video of the two-day event that will include highlights from the Friday night cruise to Gus’s Drive-In and the Match Race on Saturday, and included in this video will be amazing in-car video “ride-a-longs” in many of the cars that participated in the event, pit action between rounds and up close starting line footage. Thanks go out to Nes Hernandez, Tommy & Karen Eufemia, Doug Hansen and John Craighead who all helped out at the cruise and dragstrip to keep things running smoothly. Special thanks go out to event sponsors Lucas Oil Products, Mickey Thompson Tires and of course RPM Mag, for everything that they did to make the 2013 Extreme Event a huge success!


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RPM Reader’s Rides... IN PROGRESS!

In our usual RPM “innovate not imitate” fashion, we bring you RPM Reader’s Rides “In Progress” as Tim Lewis and the RPM team continue to uncover “Extreme Projects” that will see the streets & drag strips near and far in the not so distant future. Steve DeYoung, 2000 Camaro built by Brian Smith Fabrication of Norco CA.

DeYoung’s Camaro is a purpose built 25.3 certified Drag Radial car to compete in ADRL Pro Drag Radial, West Coast Hot Rod Association & Pacific Street Car Association. The suspension consists of Lamb Components struts with carbon front brakes. A Mark Williams full floater modular rear end housing with Lamb steel brakes has been used. The rear diff assembly and components have been chromed or polished wherever possible (pictured lower right). The engine is a Pettis Performance 430 cu inch billet CN small block fed by twin Garrett 88mm turbos. The transmission is a Keith Neal Racing powerglide. This car is a real work of art and just may be the nicest Drag Radial cars ever built! Lots of detail and chromed and polished parts put this car way over the top! Steve sends special thanks out to Rich Zehring of Zmod Performance, Turbos Direct, Lamb Components, XRP Hose & Fittings and Racepak for their continued support.


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RPM Reader’s Rides... IN PROGRESS! Jody and Jared Babcock, Michigan, 1971 Plymouth Duster

Talk about a clean “sleeper”! Its always nice to see something different being built, and the Mopar crowd always come through with great combos and nice looking rides. This father and son project is a perfect choice for such a build. I spoke with Jody about the new ride, “I bought this 1972 Gold Duster for my son and I to build together so he can learn some garage skills and know the ins and outs of the car. It is a California car with just 22,000 miles and believe it or not, all original paint! Our plan is to have a nice street car that we can do a little grudge racing with and compete in some of the all-Mopar heads-up series’. We have installed a new DTS built Strange S60, Calvert suspension, 4 wheel Wilwoods, Weld wheels and MT 275 Drag Radials. My son and I built the Chromoly 8.50 certed cage and installed the all new black interior. The car is powered by a 358 cu. in. R3W8 small block with a billet 80mm turbo and a PTC Powerglide transmission.” At RPM, we think this is the type of things dads should be doing with their kids. Get out and enjoy the time spent working together and learn how to use your hands on a project. When it’s all done and completed, you can stand back and say “we did that, together!”


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Late in June this year Virginia’s Bill Meadows set the single ProCharger eighth-mile record with a 3.96 @ 172mph in his Pontiac Grand Am, becoming the quickest single ProCharged car ever, and in the process also set Colonial Beach Dragway’s new track record with their first ever 3 second run! With the motor freshened in early August, and tuning help from Travis Quillen, Billy and Russel, I think they can go in the 3.80’s!

A budding young motorsports star? Just maybe! At just 11 years old Tyson Wade of Waco Texas runs his scaled down Chevrolet Monte Carlo at Prairie Hill Dragway in Mart Texas. Father, Chris Wade comments, “his car is called a “Baby Grand” and it has a 1200 Yamaha motorcycle motor in it with a five speed transmission.” Tyson runs at 65mph with a 10.96-second elapsed time in the 1/8-mile. Chris continues, “the car will actually do 120mph in the 1/8th, but I have it geared down for him because he just started driving it this year. So far his is the only car like this one that we know of. At least we have not seen others run at Prairie Hill, so there is no organization of them, just yet anyways. I got him in to drag racing about three years ago and he really enjoys doing it and works on the car himself!” The Monte body is all fiberglass and is also equipped with a Toyota quick-change rear end, has an electric shifter and the wheels are Centerline with 15x8 M/T Drag tires on the back and 15x3.5 M/T Drag tires on the front.

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Pan American Nationals Take 1 part United States, 1 part Puerto Rico, add in some Datsuns, Mazdas, Toyotas and put them all at Atco Raceway on July 19th21st... and you have the Pan American Nationals!


he 2013 Pan Am Nationals was more than just a race, it was an “event”, and it was full, and we mean full of cars, people and good times! With teams coming from up and down the east coast and mid west, the team USA racers were ready to duke it out with their Puerto Rico adversaries.

indexes up around the 110 area), some were starting to get worried that the race just may not be as big as in the past. Personally, this was my first time going to the event, but I have heard lots of people talking about how packed the stands are and how good the racing is, so I just had to check it out.

Very hot weather struck the east coast the week of the Pan Am race, and with temps in the days leading up to it at over 100 (and heat

Mazda RX3’s, RX7’s and RX8’s mixed in with Toyota Starlets, Celicas, Corollas, along with Datsuns and Nissans, now throw in

Story & Photos by


Tim Lewis

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some Lexus’ and you got yourself a wild weekend of fast cars. Power comes from rotary, 4cyl and 6cyl power plants. No V8’s, and no Camaros and Mustangs here. Keeping an open mind, for me this was a “don’t knock it till you try it” type of thing, and I gotta say, not only are the engines in these cars crazy built, but the rest of the car is just as nice. Candy and pearl paint jobs along with carbon everything on the inside of some. The first thing I thought was that these racers are just as high tech and high end as anything running in the heads-up scene on any level. One thing that makes races like this so cool are the cars, you just don’t see these sorts of cars everyday. I think every hardcore drag racing fan can agree with me on this. When you have 90 to 100-inch wheelbases Photos, p82: The inside of the New Castro Mazda wagon is built just like today’s Pro Mod or Top Sportsman type cars. Axel Colon had the fans on their feet whenever he pulled into the water box. Firefighter Joey Ortiz owns this wild little Mazda wagon driven by Javier Sanchez. The Virginia based team made it to the 2nd round with the low 7second wagon. Photos p83: The Jimenez 1.8 litre Corolla is show car clean in and out. Lots of detail on the engine and it hauls the mail! This car has been in the 7.60’s at close to 180 mph! And if that doesn’t impress you, this is also a stock chassis car! The brand new “Pepe Loco” of Carlos Montano out of Paterson NJ. Carlos has the new car already in the 6.60’s with limited runs on the new R2B2 chassis. Look for this car to dip into the 6.30 range later this year. Luis Corujo and his Paradise Racing Celica leaves the line on the hot sticky track. Louis came into the field in the number 4 spot with a 7.12 @ 195mph.

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Victor Nieves pops some fire on the 2-step in his 7-second Toyota Starlet. Does this little 9-inch slick car look like it would go 9.20’s?

and 80 to 200 cubic inch engines running in the 6’s and over 200 mph, well that is just plain insane! Doing a lot more with a lot less, and you can bet that there are plenty of big inch V8’s that don’t want to get in the beams with some of these guys. If you recall the story in the April issue of RPM surrounding the import cars that race worldwide, well some of those names and cars were on hand to put on a good showing for their side of the fight. This race not only has a USA vs Puerto Rico 32 car field with 16 cars from each side, but also hosts another Quick 32 race and 3 bracket classes! In qualifying, sitting on top of the USA side was Carlos Montano aka “Pepe Loco” in his Toyota Celica running 6.93 @ 210mph in the


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heat of the day, with track temps well over 150! Sitting in the number 2 spot was another car out of the Pepe Loco camp. The Cocoliso Racing Lexus had a brush with the wall just days before the start of the race in testing and was repaired just in time for this big show. Running 7.04 @ 203 proved the hard work paid off. Yet another Pepe Loco team car was Jose Mendez in the beautiful Caneca 1980 Toyota with a 7.15 @ 189 (and as of this writing that car went 6.91 on July 27th testing in cooler weather). Number 1 spot on the PR side of the qualifying ladder was the El Papa Mazda RX8 wheeled by Juan Illanas. The bad blue RX8 has been as quick as 6.81 and is the worlds quickest 13B rotary powered

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car. Bear in mind that to keep things interesting, and encourage a battle of both cars and drivers rather than money, this particular race is run on a bracket format. These cars do race heads-up events throughout the year, but this race is run on a full tree and dial-in on the window. Other teams making good runs for PR were the Black Diamond Scion running 7.06 @ 197mph. The New Castro Mazda wagon went 7.07 @ 192 and El Humilde back from a hard impact into the wall at E-town threw down a 7.08 @ 191. You can see that despite this being a bracket format, these guys wanna go fast! After Friday night and all day Saturday the call was made for 1st round action to be called to the lanes on Sunday morning. And the crowd that came through the gate was unreal! I have never seen so many people at the track so early in the morning, the place was running out of parking by 11am. And the fans kept the stands jam-packed for the whole weekend, which is something I have only seen just a few times in the past 20 years or so. The crowd really gets into the racing like nothing I have ever seen in my life. They would blow air horns, wave flags and cheer so loud it would drown out the cars when the win light came on. The racing action was just as hot as the summer heat wave! First round was action packed, with 11 of the Puerto Rico cars moving on to round two and Jorge Juarbe in the El Humilde Toyota running 6.86 @ 204mph when Jaime Rodriguez went red. A racer local to my area, Javier Sanchez, in his 2003 Mazda wagon ran 7.29 on a 7.28 dial-in moving the USA team into second round. In round 2 highlights Carlos Montano ran the quickest pass on the new car and the quickest run of the weekend against Raul Reyes’ Starlet. Pepe Loco would light the scoreboards up with a 6.69 @ 196mph! And that was lifting

Photos, top: This RX7 was spotless and very well built. Problems with the rotary powerplant sidelined the team for this event though, but look for them to be fixed and ready to go for the next event. Compare this rotary mill to the Honda engine below and you see it is like night and day, but they are both capable of making huge power with the technology available today. Not your everyday Honda Civic! The Fuel Tech Honda is a 3/4 chassis car and the chassis work is as nice as it gets as was done by Tito Chassis. The K20 Honda 4cly has been as quick as 7.12 @ 196.


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These guys flagged me down to get their pic in RPM. They were really excited to see us giving this great race coverage. Lower right: The “God Father� Boris Rojas pulling into the beams in the Mazda RX3. Rojas was the last hope team USA had going into the 3rd round but was stopped short by Victor Nieves Toyota.

Above: The runner-up in USA vs PR Victor Nieves Jr in his 2004 Mazda wagon. The Tsunami crew did a great job on the starting line getting the crowd going.

This is just a small part of what the crowd looked like on Saturday and Sunday.

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around 1,000 feet! Team Puerto Rico picked up 7 wins that round. Round 3 was the end of the weekend for team USA and its hopes to win back-to-back Pan Am races. Boris Rojas from Kissimmee, Fl driving the God Father Mazda would have problems while Victor Nieves would win on a lifting early run in the super clean white Starlet. Victor Nieves Jr with the 2004 Mazda wagon would move into the semis to face off with his father. But a side by side race wouldn’t happen when Father Victor would have problems and Jr. would take the win and advance to the final against El Papa. For the final dance, the Tsunami Mazda wagon rolled into the water beside the El Papa RX8. Illanas dialed 6.92 while Nieves Jr. dialed 7.38. Nieves cuts the tree and takes it with him with a .002 light while Illanas went .051 but drove around Nieves on the top end for the win running 7.05 to Nieves 7.77. And like they did a million times before, the crowd went wild! The action was just as hot in the Quick 32 class. The final was looking to be a barn burner with Luis Cruz dialing a 7.50 and Luis Torres and his 73 Datsun, a 7.40. Cruz leaves first but Torres goes .066 red and gives it away. Cruz takes a Sunday drive after seeing the win light while Torres runs it out hard to a 7.75 @ 175mph not knowing that he lost at the tree. The Bracket 1 class which features the cars that did not make it into the quick 32 was packed with five rounds of racing, and when the smoke cleared it was Hector Colon and Henry Montero going for the win. Colon would come out the

The weekend big winner El Papa! Juan Illanas did a great job working his way through the field and holds the bragging rights till next years Pan Am race. Victor Flores heats the tires on the one time “worlds quickest rotary car”. Flores would break out in the 2nd round going 6.91 on a 6.95 dial.


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winner dialing 8.30 and running an 8.43 @ 156mph. Montero was dead late on the tree with a .448 light and ran 8.98 @ 147 on his 8.95 dial. Bracket 2 was also 5 rounds of racing and David Cueuas dialed 10.30 and ran 10.39 @ 130mph picking up the win and taking home the cash over runner up Tony Silvera who went red at the start. After 6 rounds of racing, the final in Bracket 3 saw Edgardo Carmona dialed-in at 13.00 and Nelson Rodriguez dialed 16.10. A double breakout run (meaning both cars went faster than their dial-in) saw Carmona getting the win on a 12.98 @ 96 over Rodriguez’s 15.95 @ 81. After going to my first ever Pan American Nationals I can say with certainty that I will not miss this race ever again! The racing is non-stop. The track was in great shape, even with the heat the crew at Atco was on top of any and everything that went on. With only 2 minor oil downs and the Jerry Racing car just brushing the wall, this was one of the best run events I have ever been to, and what a show put on for the literally tens of thousands of people who came through the gates. I would guess that next year, being the 20th year of the Pan Am race, that it will be the biggest one yet. This is a must do event. If you are looking for great racing and one of the biggest crowds in all of drag racing, you need to check this one out! I want to thank Atco Raceway, GRS Motorsports, Atkins Rotary, G Force Transmissions, Fuel Tech, Import DPS and Doctor Mecanico and all the racers and fans who came out for this great race. Also I would like to thank Luis at Paradise

The New Castro heating the tires on another long smokey burnout. The beautiful painted wagon ran a new best of 7.05. The Quick 32 winner Luis Cruz leaves the starting line with the tires grabbing for as much bite as they can. The Don Roberto RX7 faces off with the wild looking and nostalgic Gabriela Nicole RX3 (near lane). Both are team USA cars and both run well into the 7-second zone.

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Crafted in the U.S.A.

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Racing for giving me something cold to drink and a place to get out of the sun.

newed, interest in fast cars. The Pan American Nationals… the cars, the people, the racing… you just have to be there to believe it!

Over the past few years I can say that I have become a firm believer in the “it’s ALL horsepower” take on motorsports. And my experience at this event has only reinforced this, especially when you have teams running 9, 8, 7 and even 6second 1/4-mile times with these machines. Now add in the enthusiasm of the fans and it gives you a new, or maybe re-

If you’re looking to see these wild cars in action, check out these upcoming races: The IREV series at MIR August 25th The Latin American Drag Fest at Maple Grove Raceway September 7-8. Orlando World Import Challenge October 18-20 The Imports vs Domestics at the World Cup Finals at MIR November 1-3

The El Humilde Toyota with Jorge Juarbe behind the wheel. This car is a back-half design, much like an Outlaw 10.5 car. As of this writing a 6.48 @ 220 are the best numbers out of the single turbo 2JZ Toyota 6cyl.

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RPM Magazine September Issue 2013  

GOING EXTREME IN 2013! Street & Strip! An insane cruise night with some of the fastest street machines in the country, then a heads-up no-...

RPM Magazine September Issue 2013  

GOING EXTREME IN 2013! Street & Strip! An insane cruise night with some of the fastest street machines in the country, then a heads-up no-...

Profile for rpmmag