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STREETCARS?

In this issue you'll read about HOT ROD's sixth annual Drag Week", a trial that, in our opinion, delivers the truth about who really has the quickest street cars in the world A number of events have claimed that result over the years, but they have been victim of "rules creep," the ever-slippery slope of tech advancements that take out the street and ramp up the race. Specifically, we can recall the earliest HOT ROD Fastest Street Car Shootouts of the '90s that quickly regressed to cars that had virtually no guise of street-ability. (Ironically, we hated the invasion of tube-chassis cars back then, but it's the tube cars that are now shockingly driving 1,000-plus miles and owning Drag Week'".)

Rules creep has forever been evident in the racing of stock-based cars. The Gas class competitors of the '60s started as street-legal cars, but by the early '70s the rules had turned them into tube-chassis

Super Stock

floppers. Then there are the NHRA Stock classes, which started as true street-driven stockers—like Mom's car that a teen would steal and race on Sunday—before it became an exercise in stretching "stock" well beyond streetability. That trend resulted in the more liberal Super Stock and then in 1970 the debut of Pro Stock. And by the mid-'70s, Pro Stock, too, had become all about nonstock tube-chassis cars. Rules creep. Don't get us started on the NASCAR version.

We selected this shot of Bill "Grumpy" Jenkins' '71 Camaro to illustrate this column not only because Grumpy won that seminal

Pro Stock race (in a '68), but also because this was Jenkins' last Pro Stocker before his '72 Vega, which was the first Pro Stocker with a tubular chassis. The Grump, who is still active in engine development, underwent surgery to correct a subdural hematoma in early September.

Engine Development Drag

Welcome to the Hot Rods section of the mag, where all the car features live. Know of a great ride that should be here? Got killer photos of cars in action along with details about them? Tip us off: email [email protected] or mail to HOT ROD Hot Rods, 831S. Douglas St., El Segundo, CA 90245.

The car is completely legal and competitive with a curb weight of 2,728 pounds and a 3?0ci engine that makes 590 hp with 12.5:1 compression, a big roller cam, and a single 390-cfm carb. A Supertrapp muffler is all it needed to pass the DMV's inspection.

Bryan Fishel's family has been running Southern Modifieds speed shop for almost 20 years. Bryan has stepped down from driving on and off the track; Todd Gregory drives the car to most events.

Modifieds are some of the most powerful cars in local circle track racing. Getting one to run fast on the track is a tough job, but getting one to the street and keeping the lawman off of you might be just as tough. With a 7.25-inch, twin-disc clutch and retired Nextel Cup transmission, it's hard to keep this beasts 29x18.5-15 Hoosier Pro Street tires from spinning. The car, along with being street legal, is also competitive—it can be race ready in 20 minutes. The tires are sized so that when race tires are mounted, the car returns to its competitive ride height.

"That's why we didn't do all the work to hide wiring, and so on—so we can take about 10 to 20 minutes and run the car. We didn't want something that was street only," says Bryan Fishel, the car's owner.

The idea for the car came from Todd Gregory and took a year to finish. With a checklist from the DMV, family and friends jumped in and added the trailer brake lights with operating signals (according to Bryan, this was the hardest part of the entire build), generic fog lamps up front, a speedometer (using a GPS, since a speedo is hard to hook to a Nextel Cup transmission), a horn, and a little hot rod-type windshield wiper to make the car street legal. Oh, and don't forget treaded tires.

Circle Car Side Vents

Bryan Fishel's Street-Legal Circle Track Car

By Jesse Kiser

Photography: Jesse Kiser

and Open a Shop in the Process.

photograph""^" «agel/Ri:H DesignS

> Brent and his boys did "some crazy fiberglass work"—they lowered the nose and rear pan by 2 inches and built the chin spoiler from scratch. The grille has blacked-out horizontal bars with polished front edges and LED turn signals.

Hot Rod Front Turn Signals

Many people will build a nice hot rod and keep it, while others will build something just for the joy of die work and sell it soon after finishing to finance the next project. Brent Jackson is an example of the latter. He built a twin-turbo '57 Chevy and a '69 Camaro, and after selling them both, he had the funds (most of them anyway) to buy his dream car, a midyear Corvette. He ended up finding a wrecked '65 with, in his words, "almost no front end and a bent frame" for a reasonable price. Because it needed a lot of work, and because he had fiberglass experience from working on boats, Brent made the decision to alter the car the way he wanted to, with some custom tricks to give it a modern look.

With a full Paul Newman Car Creations chassis, a twin-turbo Tom Nelson engine, a custom interior, and mile-deep paint, it may seem like a megadollar checkbook ride; while it certainly wasn't cheap to gather those top-notch parts, the labor costs were nil, as the car was built and painted entirely in Brent's home garage. And it turned out so good that Brent and his sons, Andrew and David, decided to build cars full time, creating Brent Jackson's Customs in Grass Valley, California.

There are just enough custom body tricks to make it different from other Vettes on the road, but not so many that it's a clownishly modified version of one of die sexiest cars to ever roll off an assembly line. And widi 800 hp under the hood, it's no slouch on the street, either.

> Brent and his boys did "some crazy fiberglass work"—they lowered the nose and rear pan by 2 inches and built the chin spoiler from scratch. The grille has blacked-out horizontal bars with polished front edges and LED turn signals.

> Tom Nelson of Nelson Racing Engines (Chatsworth, California) built one of his signature small-blocks: a twin-turbo 355-incherthat makes right at 800 hp. A Viper six-speed sends power to a beefed-up independent rear. That gold mylar on the underside of the hood is a heat shield.

> A custom, black-leather interior was crafted by Roman's Upholstery in Auburn, California, using slightly narrowed Sparco seats. It has a M0M0 wheel and Auto Meter carbon-fiber gauges, and a thumpin'3,000-watt sound system (mandated by Brent's sons] uses two 15-inch subwoofers, 672-inch separates, and 6x9 midbass speakers. Two Optima batteries charged with a 160-amp Powermaster alternator provide the juice. Brent built the door panels and center console.

> The rear bumpers and rocker panels were molded into the body, the glass was flush-mounted, the door handles were shaved, the side fender vents were opened, and the cowl vents were filled. The black paint was sprayed by Brent and his sons with a little help from a local painter and plenty of trial and error. The side pipes were built out of 4-inch stainless steel tubing. The tires are 345-19 Michelin Pilot Sports on Intro wheels (245-18s in the front).

> Tom Nelson of Nelson Racing Engines (Chatsworth, California) built one of his signature small-blocks: a twin-turbo 355-incherthat makes right at 800 hp. A Viper six-speed sends power to a beefed-up independent rear. That gold mylar on the underside of the hood is a heat shield.

> A custom, black-leather interior was crafted by Roman's Upholstery in Auburn, California, using slightly narrowed Sparco seats. It has a M0M0 wheel and Auto Meter carbon-fiber gauges, and a thumpin'3,000-watt sound system (mandated by Brent's sons] uses two 15-inch subwoofers, 672-inch separates, and 6x9 midbass speakers. Two Optima batteries charged with a 160-amp Powermaster alternator provide the juice. Brent built the door panels and center console.

"IT WAS HARD TO Fl ND A CORVETTE THAT WAS^ IN MY BUDGET AND STILL HAVESOME MONEY FORALLTHE MODIFICATIONS! NEEDEDTO

DO."-BRENT JACKSON

> You'd never know by looking at the finished car, but the body and paint were done in Brent's driveway and garage.

> Brent says the hardest part of the build was figuring out the positioning of the turbos, intercooler, and wastegates and building the headers such that he could keep the stock innerfenderwells.

> You'd never know by looking at the finished car, but the body and paint were done in Brent's driveway and garage.

> When Brent started the build in 2005, the proliferation of Pro Touring-style complete chassis hadn't really begun, but Paul Newman Car Creations had a killer C4 chassis and suspension, so he used that. The rearend was narrowed 3 inches and mini-tubbed to fit the monster tires, the brakes are 14-inch Wilwoods, the shocks are fully adjustable units from HAL, and up front are Global West Del-a-lum bushings and sway bars with rod ends. In this photo, the body is lowered onto the chassis.

> Brent says the hardest part of the build was figuring out the positioning of the turbos, intercooler, and wastegates and building the headers such that he could keep the stock innerfenderwells.

„' arivetrain death match

Drag Week™ isn't a race_asmjh«road and m, and a tight for survival Its a perseverance, and

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Tta. «» f a«S7ri» India», »«1 in Ohio we Chew Veea run an 18-seconu history.

SnJsscdV very ^^^Ei the help Hardly anyone gets throu^ D^We^ ^ ofthe of their racing brethren, and U^ha to* bcaling event that's perhaps more the way. while having a of another competitor. I^^^^g ^er finding a creative w*y to carnage victims we t0 ^ next checkpoint. We bandage their car and Aen soldier o ^ ^^

followed the same path ^^Sausc we wanted to suffer the was sidesteppingfrom the road, which same fate they did. we -vc — ROD. In the meantime, vou'U read about m another ^e ot ^ ^

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