You may remember Harry Haig, Shannon Jennings and Brett Ford (with some help from Arby and Steve Reimann) pulling the 1969 Chevelle out of the paddock behind The Car Shop in Independence, Kansas last year. The old big-block and four-speed combo ran a best of 14.0@100mph last year, but the team is set to go bigger and better this time around with a twin-turbo big-block engine combo that will test the limits of insanity.
After being machined by Robby Abbott of Abbott Engine Reconditioning in Queensland, Terry Seng of Paramount Performance in Toowoomba has assembled the engine and tuned it, and he’s also going along for the ride. It’s a 540-cube Dart Big M block with an Eagle rotating assembly and a heavy-duty Edelbrock top end, complete with Edelbrock/Musi Victor CNC heads and a Victor Jr EFI intake. But the real stars are the pair of 72mm hairdryers (not 75mm as mentioned in the video) that will be sitting high and proud through the bonnet. The whole lot is controlled by a Holley Dominator ECU tuned by Terry; he uses the same unit with plenty of success on his own seven-second X275 Commodore. Running 14psi and E85, the motor managed 1300hp without an intercooler.
We managed to capture some video of the stroker firing a few shots on the dyno at Tremaniac Racing before it was packaged up and sent to the USA, where the team is currently fitting it to the Chevelle. The guys are also fitting a ’cooler along with the new donk, which should add a few more horses. Just a couple of days ago the Chevelle was a bare shell with a rollcage and a nine-inch to replace the temperamental 10-bolt. The plan is to fit the engine, trans, fuel system and wire it all up before hitting the track for some testing. Then there’s Drag Week to finish – it’s not going to be a holiday!
Terry Seng will ride shotgun with Harry and tweak the tune for the week-long event, while Shannon ‘Pyro’ Jennings (SM, Aug ’14) and Ryan Jones will be swinging spanners and opening the beers. The plan is to get the car into the mid-eights for the week, and if there is anything left by the Friday, turn it up.
Other Aussies returning for 2016 include John Faraone, back for a fifth time with the Charger; Brian and Dianne with their big-block Torana hatch; Ross Gault with a ’69 Camaro; and the Trapnell brothers back for another crack in the purple HQ Monaro.
If you want to follow the day-to-day action keep a close eye on streetmachine.com.au.