Killer horse­power

So­cial Cir­cle man’s ‘Cuda places third in na­tional hotrod event

The Covington News - - FRONT PAGE - By Tyler Smith

De­spite some ma­jor tech­ni­cal and health is­sues, So­cial Cir­cle res­i­dent Dar­ren Ted­der placed third in the DynoMax Power to the Wheels Dyno Tour at the 2007 SEMA Shootout in Las Ve­gas on Oct. 31.

Ted­der won $5,000 in the con­test, which mea­sured the amount of horse­power the con­tes­tants could squeeze out of their hotrods. Ted­der com­peted in his cus­tom 1971 Ply­mouth Hemi ’Cuda — which was also just hon­ored as one of Hotrod Mag­a­zine’s top 10 Hotrods of 2008. Ted­der fin­ished the event with a score of 1,436 horse­power.

To put that in per­spec­tive, a nor­mal ‘Hemi ’Cuda, ac­cord­ing to Ted­der, could only be

“W e ba­si­cally stayed awake for three straight days. Then we had to drive 36 hours to Las Ve­gas for the com­pe­ti­tion.”

ex­pected to pro­duce 300 horse­power on the back wheels, where the horse­power is tested. Just prior to the event, Ted­der’s chances of com­pet­ing looked grim. Three days be­fore leav­ing for Las Ve­gas, Ted­der pushed the ’Cuda too far in a test tune up and blew out sev­eral pis­tons.

“The en­gine was cus­tom build so the parts were not easy to re­place,” Ted­der said.

With the help of his friend Richard Bur­dette, he be­gan to dis­as­sem­ble the en­gine

Dar­ren Ted­der

Hotrod en­thu­si­ast

while hop­ing parts could be found in time. He even had to have re­place­ment pis­tons cus­tom made out of state.

“That type of job nor­mally takes a month, but we were able to get them built in a day and shipped overnight,” Ted­der said.

Ted­der said he and Bur­dette spend three full days re-pre­par­ing the car for the com­pe­ti­tion.

We ba­si­cally stayed awake for three straight days,” Ted­der said. “ Then we had to drive 36 hours to Las Ve­gas for the com­pe­ti­tion.”

The stress turned out to be too much for Bur­dette, who had to be taken to the hospi­tal once they reached Las Ve­gas for a bleed­ing ul­cer.

“ He is one tough in­di­vid­ual,” Ted­der said of Bur­dette. “ You couldn’t ask for a bet­ter friend.”

Once he knew Bur­dette’s con­di­tion was not se­ri­ous, Ted­der said he was able to en­joy the trip and com­pe­ti­tion.

“ That last night we were there, we cruised up and down the Ve­gas strip,” Ted­der said. “And that was a blast. It was the best part of the trip. We had peo­ple swarm the car when we stopped at the red lights. There were so many car fans there be­cause of SEMA. We pulled up to Bel­la­gio and hung out with a crowd of peo­ple out­side the ho­tel for a long time.”

What’s next for Ted­der? He’s al­ready pre­par­ing for next year’s Power to the Wheels com­pe­ti­tion.

Mandi Singer/The Cov­ing­ton News

Hot wheels: Lo­cal res­i­dent Dar­ren Ted­der’s 1971 Ply­mouth Hemi ‘ Cuda re­turns to Cov­ing­ton af­ter tak­ing third place in the Dynomax Power to the Wheels 2007 SEMA Shootout in Las Ve­gas on Oct. 31.

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