For the sixth year in a row, Optima Batteries produced the Optima Ultimate Street Car Invitational (OUSCI) at Spring Mountain Motor Resort and Country Club in Pahrump, Nevada. We’re talking the best of the best from the Pro Touring community; these competitors aren’t afraid to wing their rides through the upper rpm, attack corners at high speeds, and push their braking prowess to the limits.
Participants qualified through their performance at a variety of events, including the Run to the Coast, Detroit Speed Southern Slam, Holley LS Fest, Goodguys, Silver State Classic Challenge, Sandhills Open Road Challenge, and the Motor State Challenge. Those who won were given the opportunity to compete against other top-tier rides for a trophy and bragging rights for the following year.
All invited must have their car on scene at the annual SEMA Show in Las Vegas. And for a lucky few who just happen to be showcasing their rides at SEMA; an Optima-selected committee walks the show, offering Golden Tickets to a select few for a last-chance opportunity to participate in the big show.
Prior to Saturday’s main event, all participants can earn a few additional competition points by stopping along Friday’s 60-mile Detroit Speed Road Rally to Pahrump. After a brief overnight rest, each person must then compete in the Wilwood Disc Brakes Speed Stop, Lingenfelter Performance Design, the BFGoodrich Hot Lap, and the RideTech Autocross.
OUSCI is, to state it mildly, a challenge; simply getting an invitation to participate is an achievement, but rightly so, that’s where the fun begins. This event draws competitors from all corners of the country, which produces a great show for all. This year’s battle was intense and nothing short of a heart-pumping adrenaline rush. And before the sun hit the ground to call it a day, it was Brian Hobaugh with his ’65 Corvette who earned the crown and took home the 2013 OUSCI championship title.
Brian Hobaugh was a man on a mission this year with his ’65 Corvette. After a close finish in 2012, this year he came prepped and ready to take on the world. He ran 1:48.632, placing him Fifth in the Hot Lap session; first in the Autocross with a 36.311-second run; maxed his earnings in the Road Rally with all 10 points; finished 11th in the Performance Design portion; all of which was good enough to take the win for 2013 with 86 points. You can read more about Hobaugh and his ’65 Corvette in the Sep. ’13 issue of CHP or do a search on our site at chevyhiperformance.com.
Last year’s OUSCI winner, Mark Stielow, was back in full stride and put on a great show for the crowd. He placed Fifth in the Performance Design; Fourth in the Autocross with a 37.916; Fourth in the Hot Lap with a 1:48.551; Seventh in the Speed Stop with an 18.424; all of which placed him in the Runner-Up position with a total of 76 points.
Brian Finch and his ’71 Camaro are no strangers to the OUSCI competition. This year, the infamous second-gen sported a fresh white sheen with a custom-built front air splitter. Finishing with a total of 67 points, Finch took the Fourth Place position.
We’ve been following Lynda Jacobs’ progress throughout the year, and she’s been a contender at every event entered. Powering her ’66 Chevelle SS convertible is a new LS3 with a complete COMP Cams valvetrain, Wilwood brakes, Detroit Speed sway bars, and Viking shocks. Jacobs completed the Road Rally, earning her the full 10 points; 75 points out of a 210 point scale in the Performance Design segment; 39th in the Hot Lap with a 2:07.388; 34th in the Autocross running 41.921; 42nd in the Speed Stop, with a 21.083; giving her a 37th Place overall finish during her first OUSCI outing. You can also expect a full feature of her ’vert in the months to come.
If the name Danny Popp sounds familiar, that’s because we featured his beautiful ’72 Corvette back in the April ’13 issue; he was also our autocross driver during the inaugural Chevy High Performance Street Machine Challenge. Popp won the Hot Lap portion, speeding his way to a 1:46.781, on the Autocross he finished Third with a 37.669, in the Speed Stop he then placed Sixth with an 18.401, giving him an overall Third Place finish at the end of the day.
| TOP TEN COMPETITORS |
| Competitor || Number || Road Rally || Design || Hot Lap || Autocross || Speed Stop || Total || Rank |
| Brian Hobaugh || 16 || 10 || 10 || 16 || 25 || 25 || 86 || 1 |
| Mark Stielow || 1 || 10 || 16 || 18 || 18 || 14 || 76 || 2 |
| Danny Popp || 21 || 10 || 5 || 25 || 20 || 15 || 75 || 3 |
| Brian Finch || 17 || 10 || 6 || 9 || 22 || 20 || 67 || 4 |
| Karl Dunn || 52 || 10 || 15 || 13 || 14 || 5 || 57 || 5 |
| Todd Earsley || 28 || 10 || 0 || 12 || 11 || 22 || 55 || 6 |
| Steve Kepler || 5 || 10 || 0 || 15 || 13 || 16 || 54 || 7 |
| Kyle Tucker || 19 || 10 || 0 || 22 || 9 || 13 || 54 || 7 |
| Bret Voelkel || 20 || 10 || 1 || 8 || 15 || 18 || 52 || 9 |
| Larry Woo || 10 || 10 || 0 || 5 || 16 || 12 || 43 || 10 |
Tennessee City, Tennessee, resident Karl Dunn and his ’68 Camaro; his Hot Lap Challenge was an impressive 1:49.469 and he finished Seventh in the Autocross portion. At the end of the day, his efforts netted him with a Fifth Place finish.
James Shipka out of Calgary, Alberta, and his One Lap ’67 Camaro suffered a few issues, namely a starter in the pits and later the power steering during his road course session. Shipka and crew worked valiantly to get back into contention and still managed to pull a 26th Place finish.
Randy Johnson from D&Z Customs was an Optima Golden Ticket winner and finished 35th overall with his newly created ’73 Camaro. Under the hood is a 700hp LS backed by a Tremec Magnum six-speed.
Kyle Tucker from Detroit Speed brought out its ’12 Camaro. Quite frankly, this is probably the baddest fifth-gen we’ve ever had the opportunity to check out. Under the hood is all business with a Mast Motorsports built LS7 and features all Detroit Speed suspension. On the Speed Stop, Tucker placed eighth with an 18.690 run; got max points on the Road Rally; came in second in the Hot Lap with a 1:47.781; and he was 12th in the Autocross, with a 39.373; placing him Seventh overall.
Cheryl Herrick and her Jet-Hot High Performance Coating ’67 Nova made their presence known at this year’s OUSCI event. We’ve featured Herrick’s ride in the Jan. ’13 issue and enjoyed seeing her Chevy II in action. She ran 19.714 in the Speed Stop; earned all 10 points in the Road Rally; placed 10th in the Performance Design; ran 2:11.137 in the Hot Lap; and traversed the autocross in 39.890.
Rounding out the Top 10 was Larry Woo and his ’68 Camaro. Woo placed Fifth in the Autocross, running 38.008; 16th in the Hot Lap with a 1:54.091; earned all 10 points in the Road Rally; Ninth in the Speed Stop, with a 18.703 run; and 21st in the Performance Design.
Stacy Tucker from Detroit Speed was in full action mode with her ’69 Camaro. She was fast during the Hot Lap, running 1:56.606, and blasted through the autocross with a 40.971.