Tennessee Tradition Team
We just love the machine campaigned by the husband and wife team of Kevin and Brenda Blair. Based out of Elmwood, Tennessee, driver Brenda competes with her 1977 Chevy Caprice within both ET and index classes on the Nostalgia Muscle Car circuit. This race car, which tips the scales at almost 3,500 pounds and consistently does massive, crowd-pleasing burnouts, uses a 385ci small-block Chevy (built and maintained by husband, Kevin, and Scott Perkins). They also employ a Turbo 350 transmission assembled by Craighead Transmissions. The Blairs purchased this car in 1988 with 72,000 miles on the odometer. In its current form, the primary target is NMCA’s 12.00 e.t. mark. However, the car has run as quick as 11.54 at 114.70 mph. Over the many seasons campaigned, the Caprice has been very successful—with credits including three track championships and finishing in the Top 10 in NMCA points two years in a row. During 2018, the Blairs gave their machine an updated look with new black paint with a hint of red pearl. The team is 100 percent devoted independent; however, they express their deep appreciation for the products and support provided by Clevite, Air Flow Research, Scorpion Rocker Arms, Comp Cams, E3 Spark Plugs, Edelbrock, Flowmaster, Hedman, Moser, and Richmond Gear (just to name a few).
Some Corvette Clair-ification
Michigan’s Steve Griswold is a popular fixture within North America’s fast street car racing genre with his very impressive 2005 Corvette. The Clairco Tool/Sandvik Coromant Corvette, which is equipped with a 388ci LSX engine that features All Pro LS7 aluminum cylinder heads, a Late Model Engine (LME) custom billet intake manifold, Holley Dominator EFI, and ProCharger F-2 supercharger is a very quick car, having run as quick as 8.34 and over 165 mph. Based out of Milan (southwest of Detroit) Steve’s Corvette features a great patriot theme with a new wrap (by Edwards Creative) that was debuted in 2018 highlighting an American Eagle and “Don’t Tread on Me” message. Steve focuses his Corvette’s competition primarily within the very fast Street King racing genre where he finished fourth in final season points last year. When drag racing, he proudly represents his primary sponsor: Clairco Tool Company.
Cool in Comp
In what is a prime example of what the NHRA Competition Eliminator class needs a lot more of is a very creative 2015 Chevy HHR based out of California. Conceived by Kurt and Brian Moscini (Redwood City), this truly one-of-a-kind machine, which is run in G/AA (altered automatic), debuted on the dragstrip in 2017. That came after Kurt purchased this panel version right off a dealer’s lot with it having only 100 miles on it. The HHR was then shipped to reputed Gary Hansen Race Cars who built the chassis and did the tinwork before the Moscinis finished the assembly themselves. This is a very lightweight entry, which features a 304ci small-block Chevy that was built by Colorado-based experts MadCap Racing Engines. With that high-revving mill, the HHR has been propelled to times in the 8.3-second zone at almost 160 mph. Brian and Kurt fund their racing operation as independents from the proceeds of a couple of Mountain Mike’s Pizza outlets, which they own and operate, based in both San Carlos and Campbell, California.
From UK to USA
NHRA’s 2018 drag racing season included an interesting addition within its Stock Eliminator ranks at select events last year. Williams Brothers Racing was on the entry list for some events after importing their meticulously prepped 1969 Camaro AA/SA car all the way from its home base in Northamptonshire, England. Driver Nic Williams, who along with his brother Dan, are bona fide Chevrolet-brand American muscle car enthusiasts (Dan has a 1970 Nova) that have been regular participants within Europe’s FIA Championship Series, racing not only in England but also in Sweden, Finland, and Germany. The highlight of their trip to the USA last season was mixing it up with the sport’s best at the NHRA Chevrolet Performance US Nationals at Indy. At that prestigious event they garnered some nice recognition, too, when the NHRA awarded them with the event’s “Never Rest Performer of the Race” presented by Edelbrock. The Williams Brothers Camaro, which features an aluminum 427 big-block Chevy engine (built by reputed Brian Tilburg) has since been shipped back to England, but this British team, which also includes crew member Lorne Denny, confirm they are drawing up plans to do it all again in 2019.
Photos by Bruce Biegler