Ford Beats GM-Sat­u­rated Race En­try List

Muscle Car Review - - Contents - By Bob McClurg

Ford beats GM-sat­u­rated race en­try list

For years the Su­per Car Re­union, which is largely sup­ported by mem­bers of the Yenko Sportscar Club and its var­i­ous satel­lite or­ga­ni­za­tions, has stressed the fact that SCR openly welcomes any and all types of su­per­cars (GM or oth­er­wise). Well, hold on to your fanny packs, GM fans, be­cause the drag rac­ing seg­ment of the 21st SCR was won by a Ford, with a Pon­tiac tak­ing the run­ner-up spot and an Oldsmo­bile ad­vanc­ing to the semi­fi­nals!

SCR 21’s fi­nal-round fin­ish un­der­scores the fact that this par­tic­u­lar event of­fers mass ap­peal not only to your higher-pro­file GM loy­al­ists but also to su­per­car fans as a whole. And the word seems to be get­ting around. Un­like last year’s rain-de­layed event, SCR 21—held at Bowl­ing Green, Ken­tucky’s Beech Bend Race­way Park and the nearby Corvette Mu­seum—ex­pe­ri­enced pic­ture-per­fect weather, just right for some good old-fash­ioned Fri­day af­ter­noon dial-in hand­i­cap drag rac­ing. The ra­tio of factory su­per­cars to mus­cle cars at SCR 21 turned out to be three to one this year, and it was any­body’s guess who would be in the win­ner’s cir­cle at day’s end. Now let’s take a look at some of the be­hind-the-scenes sto­ries that un­folded at SCR 21.

The Girl’s All Right!

Univer­sity of Ken­tucky mar­ket­ing ma­jor Kennedy Pa­trick, 21, grad­u­ated from spec­ta­tor to com­peti­tor at SCR 21, driv­ing her 1969 Chev­elle 454 big-block in com­pe­ti­tion. She recorded a best of 15.99/98.99 prior to be­ing put on the trailer by her father, Todd, in his own ’69 Chev­elle. She said, “This is awe­some.” Look out, dad, be­cause it looks like you’ve got two rac­ers in the fam­ily.

Re­liv­ing the Good Old Days

Orig­i­nal owner David Grif­fith took a ride or two in the 427 COPO Ca­maro that used to be his, now owned by su­per­car en­thu­si­ast Kasey Al­ford. Grif­fith bought the COPO, Hug­ger Orange with black vinyl top, new from Val­dosta, Ge­or­gia’s Roger Budd Chevrolet. He hadn’t seen the Ca­maro for 40 years. He said be­ing re­united with his old hot rod was “an emo­tional ex­pe­ri­ence that can­not be de­scribed.”

Un­of­fi­cial Hard Luck Award of the Event

In spite of ideal weather, Su­per Car Re­union co­founders Tom and Rob Clary ex­pe­ri­enced a week­end they would rather for­get. It all started when the lower ra­di­a­tor tank of their Day­tona Yel­low/ white stripe 1969 Yenko Ca­maro puked its guts out while they were load­ing the car into the hauler. Tom im­me­di­ately got on the horn and called Doug Perry, who was en route to Bowl­ing Green, and ad­vised him of the sit­u­a­tion. Perry and his Girl Fri­day, Amy Dailey, flooded the air­waves. Within min­utes Perry’s cell­phone was buzzing with of­fers of ra­di­a­tors from sYc mem­bers from all over the coun­try. As it turned out, event cospon­sor Shawn Green from Rich­mond, Ken­tucky’s Ca­maro Cen­tral happened to have the cor­rect ra­di­a­tor in stock.

With half the bat­tle won, the next step was find­ing a club mem­ber who could pick it up in Rich­mond on his or her way to SCR

21. One mem­ber who knew some­one high up in the Ken­tucky High­way Pa­trol jok­ingly of­fered to have the ra­di­a­tor per­son­ally de­liv­ered to Beech Bend Park, al­though we’re not too sure if that in­cluded sirens and blaz­ing gum­ball ma­chines! How­ever, san­ity pre­vailed, and Jef­fer­son­ville, Ken­tucky, sYc mem­ber Van Hurst came to the res­cue. Talk about a club that in­ter­acts with each other! How­ever, af­ter in­stalling the new ra­di­a­tor in the Ca­maro, the Clarys pro­ceeded to un­load their 1970 Yenko Deuce race car, only to dis­cover a cracked fuel line fit­ting ex­it­ing the Deuce’s high-vol­ume elec­tric fuel pump, forc­ing Tom to leave the car in the box. Some days!

Man of the Year

Ames, Iowa’s Kim Howie has been a fix­ture at the Su­per Car Re­unions since in­cep­tion. There isn’t a soul in the su­per­car col­lec­tor car hobby who doesn’t know him or at least hasn’t heard a Kim Howie story. You just can’t help but like the guy, and that’s the rea­son why the SCR voted Howie 2018’s Man of the Year. It was this writer’s honor to roast him with all four burn­ers fully lit. Howie took it all in good stride and gave a heart­felt ac­cep­tance speech. The au­di­ence re­sponded with a stand­ing ova­tion.

Food for Thought

For­mer Car Craft magazine and NHRA staffer, and au­to­mo­tive ca­ble TV per­son­al­ity Chuck Han­son gave a mov­ing speech about grow­ing up with cars as a kid and the pos­i­tive di­rec­tion in which it took him. He pro­ceed to ap­peal to SCR at­ten­dees, stress­ing that if the sport is to sur­vive, “we” must en­gage the up-and-com­ing gen­er­a­tion of hands-on car en­thu­si­asts and get them in­volved in the sport. Han­son then pointed out that if we don’t, all those beau­ti­ful

“The lower ra­di­a­tor tank of their Yenko Ca­maro puked its guts out”

mus­cle cars we so greatly ad­mire are des­tined to be­come lit­tle more than mu­seum pieces.

I Got Your Back, Jack!

You never know who you’re go­ing to run across at the Su­per Car Re­union. Orig­i­nal ZL1 Ca­maro owner Ken Barn­hart and friends were sit­ting at a ta­ble dur­ing Satur­day’s car show rem­i­nisc­ing about the good old days, when he was asked who was the tough­est racer he ever com­peted against.

“Around here it would have been Dickie Ogle,” Barn­hart an­swered. “I won­der what­ever happened to that guy.”

At that time Barn­hart had been sit­ting back-to-back with an­other man about his own age for hours. Some­one told him, “If you want to say hello to Dickie Ogle, just turn around.” The look on Barn­hart’s face was price­less!

Re­tired NHRA Stock and Su­per Stock Elim­i­na­tor racer Ogle

(who has 75 wins to his credit) stopped by the Corvette Mu­seum with scrap­book in hand. He wanted to see if any­one at SCR 21 might know the where­abouts of his 1968 Ca­maro Z/28 race car, which the late Bill “Grumpy” Jenk­ins ar­ranged for him to buy di­rectly through GM (for $1,800), and the win­ner of most of those tro­phies. Once the two joined up, the tall tales be­gan to fly. As the con­ver­sa­tion pro­gressed, the crowd of on­look­ers got big­ger and big­ger.

From Out of the Shad­ows

Parked amongst all the glitz and glam­our at SCR 21 was YS 760, the very last Yenko-con­verted 1967 427 Su­per Ca­maro built that year and sold new through Yenko Chevrolet. Se­cond owner Doug Perry found the Ca­maro in Greens­burg, Penn­syl­va­nia, and pur­chased the 7,257-mile su­per­car from orig­i­nal owner John Weaver. Garaged since 1973, YS 760 is the most doc­u­mented and highly op­tioned 427 Su­per Ca­maro known to ex­ist, says Perry.

“We call this the Su­per­man Car be­cause the [orig­i­nal] ex­te­rior color is Nan­tucket Blue with a red in­te­rior, just like Su­per­man. And like Su­per­man, it’s a true sur­vivor!” (See “The Left­over,” Oct. 2018, for the full story on Perry’s find.)

This year’s Su­per Car Re­union was made pos­si­ble by ti­tle spon­sor MASCAR Clas­sics along with Al­lied Roof­ing, Deuce Heaven-Schoen­thaler Restora­tions, Ca­maro Cen­tral, Kelsey Tire, Arone Restora­tions, O’Reilly Auto Parts, NAPA, JMB Bar­be­cue, Pic Sweet, Mon­ster En­ergy, Rusted Tires, Ken Ti­bor, and Ben­nie Pfeif­fer. Check out the pho­tos for a closer look at some of the awe­some vin­tage GM (and other) su­per­car iron that made SCR 21 such a suc­cess.

1 SCR 21 was 21-year-old Kennedy Pa­trick’s first drag race as a par­tic­i­pant, but it def­i­nitely won’t be her last. She has been watch­ing her father, Tom, race since she was a pup, but it wasn’t un­til good ol’ dad swapped a 454 into her 1969 Chev­elle (a 16th birth­day present) that she ex­pe­ri­enced the thrill of vic­tory and the agony of de­feat when put on the trailer by—you guessed it—her dad.2 The show car lineup on Satur­day in­cluded (left to right) Tom Clary’s 1969 427 Yenko/SC, Jamie Jarvis’ 1970 Yenko Deuce, Den­nis Cumby’s 1970 Chev­elle LS6, and Ken Barn­hart’s 1969 ZL1 Ca­maro.3 Andy Snet­se­laar drew oohs and aahs when he rolled out boss Den­nis Al­baugh’s very beau­ti­ful Rally Green 1969 Yenko SC/427 four­speed Chevy Nova, one of nine known sur­vivors out of 38 built.4 Su­per Car Re­union 21 Man of the Year Kim Howie, whose 1970 Dick Har­rell Ca­maro was fea­tured on the event T-shirt, gave a great ac­cep­tance speech and did an ex­cel­lent job of reign­ing in his emo­tions, al­though you could see that he was moved.

5 NHRA Stock and Su­per Stock leg­end Dickie Ogle (sit­ting far right) showed up at SCR 21 with scrap­book in hand in hopes that some­one might know the where­abouts of his 1968 Ca­maro Z/28 race car.

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