Brian Lohnes of Hot Rod Magazine and BANGshift.com takes us for a tour through the shop of 5-time Hot Rod Drag Week champion Larry Larson. Drag Week is a brilliant concept that tours four different tracks over 1200 miles in five days. The winner has the fastest average time over the entire event. It’s amazing that Larry has won five times in a row in his 2500 horsepower Chevy Nova II, but his success is even more endearing because of his philosophy towards Drag Week. He races in a steel bodied car without towing a trailer full of spare parts because he believes that to be the original spirit of the competition. That’s how weekend warriors approach drag racing so that’s how he’s going to do it, too. Larry didn’t end up winning a sixth title this year, but he was beat by a tube chassis, fiberglass body car that was purpose built for Drag Week. He’s still a champion in my book.
The Draguar is probably my favorite of the Hot Rod Magazine Road Kill episodes. The guys purchased a Jaguar with a clapped out Chevy 350 for $1000 and then bolted a gargantuan Weiand supercharger to it in a parts store parking lot. The car survives some burnouts, a road trip and a few passes down the drag strip before the engine gives up the ghost. Apparently they thought the car was cool enough to deserve a new engine. This episode is about the dyno prep of the new Ford 383 that’s going to make a home under what’s left of the hood of the Draguar. The process starts with a break-in run naturally aspirated before the Weiand supercharger gets bolted on and they go for broke cranking up the boost with smaller pulleys.
Finnegan and Freiburger of Hot Rod Magazine go on another Road Kill trip with a Chevrolet Monza Spyder. They bought a Monza because it’s V8 powered and has a fairly aerodynamic shape for top speed passes. What makes the video awesome is that they decided to try and break 200 horsepower at the wheels by supercharging their car with leaf-blowers, 5 of them to be exact. $1600 worth of leaf-blowers gets bolted into the back of a $3000 car and then they see how fast it will run the standing mile.
Hot Rod Magazine gathers up some of the kit cars available from Factory Five for some testing in Las Vegas. The lineup included a Cobra replica with Ford’s new 5.0 liter Coyote engine, a Cobra with a Summit Racing drivetrain kit, a Daytona Coupe and Ridetech’s ’33 Ford replica. Testing starts at the drag strip and then ends up at the Test Drives Unlimited road course to go up against Lamborghini’s two-wheel drive Gallardo. Can the garage project kit cars hold their own against a true exotic?
Hot Rod Magazine’s Associate Editor, Jesse Kiser, purchased the magazine’s failed 1967 Chevrolet Impala convertible project car. It was about to get sold off after a bold gamble with the paint color backfired. The video documents the process of using a paint kit from Summit Racing to put a decent coat of paint on the car over the span of one day in a home garage. The end up spraying a coat of sealer, a red color coat and a satin clear coat. It turns out decent and more importantly it gives the car a new lease on life and the owner some DIY pride in the work he did on it.