CHAR­LIE JONES

> NID­DRIE, VIC­TO­RIA

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WE SPOT­TED Char­lie Jones’s old-school HT Monaro lay­ing down re­li­able 11-sec­ond passes at last year’s Holden Na­tion­als in Heath­cote. We were keen to learn more about his long-time love af­fair with BAD69, so we caught up with him for a chin­wag.

We hear that you’ve owned the Monaro for quite a while.

I bought it in 1983, and since then it’s done 3000-odd passes in Queens­land, Syd­ney, Ade­laide and just about ev­ery track in Vic­to­ria. We’ve won quite a few meet­ings, in­clud­ing the Street Ma­chine Na­tion­als back in 1993. In the Street Car Shootout, we had to run speed-rated T/AS, but still did an 11.78. That was with the old mo­tor and cast-iron heads, too. We also went to the Street Ma­chine Na­tion­als back in ’86, and a few Sum­mer­nats later on.

Tell us a bit about the car.

It’s a 350, with 195cc AFR heads, port-matched Edel­brock Vic­tor E man­i­fold, Dom­i­na­tor carb and Crane roller cam. It made 549hp on the dyno back in ’93. It runs to a Pow­er­glide with a 5500rpm con­verter and nine-inch with 4.56 gears. Paul Rogers has built my transmissi­ons for­ever, and he’s trav­elled the coun­try with me rac­ing. Af­ter about 1900 passes on this en­gine, I put a hole in the block at the Holden Na­tion­als.

Where’d ‘Dodgy Bros Rac­ing’ come from?

When I was 18 or 19 back in 1983, we had a GM-H de­signer move in across the road. Back in those days we worked on the car with a lit­tle trol­ley jack and used the front tyres as jack stands. One morn­ing he came over to see what all the noise was about, and when he saw us work­ing he called us ‘the dodgy broth­ers’. Hence, the name was born.

The car’s won­der­fully 80s, but have you ever been tempted to change it up?

This same GM-H de­signer hated the let­ter­box scoop. He did some cal­cu­la­tions one day and told us the power gains if we ran an A9X re­verse-cowl in­stead, but we told him it’s stay­ing. That’s when he put the ‘Dodgy Bros Rac­ing’ sticker on the scoop – he’s the only one who’s ever got away with touch­ing the car! If I changed the scoop or put an LS in it these days, all the guys from the nos­tal­gia club would take me out to a pad­dock and beat me to death.

What’s your mo­ti­va­tion to stick with the same car for 37 years?

It’s a ’69 Monaro – why would I get rid of it? Ev­ery­thing about them is pure mus­cle. I talk to peo­ple who say: “I had a Monaro back when I was young,” and so on. I tell them I’ve still got mine, and they call me a bas­tard!

Reckon you’ll be back rac­ing this year?

It’s hard to find the time and money to build a new mo­tor when you have kids. Thank­fully, both my daugh­ters love drag rac­ing and ba­si­cally any­thing with a mo­tor. That’s a vic­tory!

If I changed the scoop or put an LS in it, all the guys from the nos­tal­gia club would take me out to a pad­dock and beat me to death

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