WE RECENTLY took a trip over Bass Strait for Tassie Nats 2019 at Tas Dragway, and while we knew we’d find some killer machines on the Apple Isle, we didn’t think we’d find something quite as ludicrous as Chris Marsh’s EA Falcon.
The car is a no-nonsense, 110 per cent purpose-built drag car, but it isn’t a Ford mill being used to hurtle this monster machine down the strip. Nope, instead Chris decided to pull the small-block Chevy out of his LX Torana drag car, freshen up the top end with a bigger 14/71 blower and then slot it into the Falcon.
Chris has owned the Falcon for the past four years, but it was a mad six-week rush to get the EA ready for Tassie Nats. “I bought the car as a roller and most of the chassis work was done, so those six weeks were spent putting the engine in, doing wiring and all that stuff,” Chris says.
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Chris has been racing cars of this nature for around 12 years, and he needed all of that experience during his test runs at Tassie Nats. To say they were white-knuckle rides would be an understatement, but Chris pedalled the car and made the most of what he had. “We actually made a bit of a mistake, because we took power out of it to try and help control the bouncing, when we should’ve kept it in to help it get the wheels up a bit more,” he says.
After a number of hairy runs (one of which nearly saw a marriage between car and wall), Chris’s best run came in at a 9.86@155mph, backing off the throttle three times during the run to keep the Falcon on the black stuff.
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“It was a big learning experience, and we know a lot more about the car now, so our next hit out should be a lot more successful,” he says.
Chris’s next meeting will be a bit of eighth-mile running at Tas Dragway at the end of April, before heading north in November to Sydney for a run in the East Coast Thunder series. “We’ve pretty much realised that we’ll have to come over to the mainland to run any serious numbers, so Sydney should be a good place to start as we work our way up to the Wild Bunch Wars,” he says.
The engine was capable of 8.50s with less power in the old Torana, so Chris’s hopes of a 7.80 over the quarter should be more than achievable with some R&D. We look forward to seeing what it can do later on in the year.
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“Big thanks to Mel, Gareth, Jason, Cam and Stu, as well as Graham Pettit for all the long hours he put in to make the almost impossible Tassienats deadline.”