The Street Machine Summernats dyno competition kicked off in 1997 and it didn’t take long for the rage in the cage event to evolve into a full-on arms race. During the golden years of the event, the rules mandated the use of pump fuel and also limited the amount of boost that could be run.
This created some serious technological challenges for the emerging tuner scene, produced some legendary cars and established some reputations that lead to long-term careers in the horsepower game. As competition spiralled out of control, the organisers tinkered with the rules and then briefly replaced Horsepower Heroes with the Dyno Test for Summernats 23 and 24, before reinstating it for Summernats 25. These days, the rules are similar to Street Machine Drag Challenge – run what you brung and hope you brung enough!
Summernats Horsepower Heroes:
9 1996 Anthony Fabris VL Walkinshaw 325rwhp
10 1997 Matt Bunton HQ 454 Van 372rwph
11 1998 Jason Gray HSV GTS 404rwhp
12 1999 Jason Gray HSV GTS 486rwhp
13 2000 Rob Vickery Commodore Ute 527rwhp
14 2001 Todd Wilkes Giocattolo 850rwhp
15 2002 Rob Vickery Commodore Ute1023rwhp
16 2003 Eddy Tassone VH Commodore 1376rwhp
17 2004 Brett Waine VH Commodore 1470rwhp
18 2005 Eddy Tassone VH Commodore 1259whp
19 Craig Munro, TRYHRD 1262rwhp
20 Trick & Mansweto, Ford Capri 940rwhp
21 Craig Munro TRYHRD, 1895rwhp
22 2009 Lyle Lemon MRPSI, 1533rwhp
23 2010 Adrian Abella, FPV Typhoon 869rwhp
24 Graham Longhurst, HZ Holden, 891rwhp
25 Jake Edwards, Torana, 1592rwhp
26 2013 Jake Edwards, Torana, 1666rwhp
27 2014 Michael Daniels, Falcon XR6 Turbo 1131rwhp
28 2015 Jake Edwards, 2084rwhp (qualifying)
29 2016 Jake Edwards, 1783rwhp
30 2017 Jake Edwards, 1663rwhp
31 2018 Paul Allen, LX Torana, 1010hp
32 2019 Brenden 'Bubba' Medlyn, VH Commodore, 2483hp
33 2020 Maria Passos, Ford BA Falcon, 2202rwhp
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Street Machine is the bible of Aussie modified auto culture, celebrating wild muscle cars, customs and hot rods – and the incredible humans who create them.
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