Hendrix Racing Engines & JMS Racing Engines; Monrovia, CA
Robert Hendrix, Mike & Don Johnson
"Hendrix has been building engines for a relatively short time, but JMS has been in the business more than 40 years. The collaboration of Hendrix Racing Engines and JMS Racing Engines brings together years of experience in many forms of racing including off-shore and endurance boats, Winston West circle track, sprint cars, drag cars, SCORE, off-road, and even drift cars. It would be impossible to pick a primary focus as we build all types and for many applications. Mike Johnson and I chose to compete, not only for the possible monetary gain, but also for the chance to go head-to-head with some of the best and most innovative engine builders in the country.

"After prolonged discussion and brainstorming, we decided that the Chrysler had a few advantages for this competition. We also wanted to do something a little out of the ordinary to show that there is plenty of power potential with one of the lesser-used brands. One advantage to the Chrysler design is the stability of the shaft-mounted 1.7:1 rocker arms. Needle bearing roller rockers will be used along with a custom mechanical roller cam. A beltdrive will help with harmonics and cam adjustments and it will make cam changes a breeze. We plan to reverse-cool the engine to keep combustion chamber temps in check and minimize detonation. Also, oil control will be a major focus as a power contributor, and we have some innovative ideas to try out.

"Having access to an in-house DTS dyno makes it a little easier for us to test a myriad of combinations well in advance, and we plan to take advantage of this. The block, crank, and rods are ready, as is most of the valvetrain and the plan is to have a running engine by mid-July. This will allow us ample dyno time to work out the bugs and optimize the output. Our guess for peak horsepower is somewhere in the 800 to 825 range. As far as the winning score is concerned, one more than second place is all we're looking for."

T&B's Performance & Machine; Monroe, WI
Tom & Brenda Foley
We really like this go-for-broke husband/wife team, who've entered the EMC before with a Ford. This year, they're pulling a Kaase and switching to...a Chrysler? They've let on little about their efforts, only that they feel strongly they know who'll walk away with the trophy and the cash."We do a little bit of everything, it may not be the most profitable, but it keeps us learning everyday. We've been doing it about 11 years full-time. The EMC has been an incredible experience. In the real world of engine building, the EMC is our Survivor, Big Brother, and Amazing Race all rolled into one. To be in the company of the greatest engine builders in the country makes you strive to be the best you can be, stretching your ability to the max. And, after all, to be in this field, you have to be competitive in nature. Yep, we're bringing a Chrysler this year. We have analyzed every rule very carefully and feel that the Mopar's shaft rockers, external oil pump, and larger lifter diameter make it an ideal candidate for this challenge. We do not have a dyno on site, however, we work closely with Engelking Dyno Service in Rock City, Illinois on its dyno. It works out great. We're not sure what the horsepower number is going to be, but in order to win, the entry is going to need more than Jon Kaase."

Indianapolis, IN
Corey Short
As far as we know, at the time this is written, Short is the only competitor who'll enter a Hemi this year. Perhaps that's due to the learning curve from 2 years ago, where the Hemis did not fair as well in our challenge as everyone thought they would. Short's got some good ideas to fix all that and walk away with the gold.

"I have decided to build a 508-cid Hemi this year because the head design is efficient by nature, which will allow us to keep port volume small for low-speed velocity and good low-end torque. Also the stock Hemi can take a much longer stroke, which will allow us to run a long rod and still keep rod/stroke ratio in the 1.50s. Everyone knows a Hemi will produce great power up high, and we think building an engine with a stroke that's a 1/4-inch bigger than its bore will make good low-end torque without hurting the top-end horsepower."

Blair Racing; Pylesville, MD
Gary Blair
"Our short-block design is based on maximum efficiency for the prescribed test parameters. The bore will be 4.600 and the stroke will be 3.825 with a 7.100-inch rod to put us at a 1.85:1 rod ratio. The long rod coupled with the short stroke will result in increased piston dwell at TDC to improve overlap scavenging and increase VE. It'll also reduce cylinder-wall friction, along with the offset wristpins we plan to run. The IDT Series 800 heads will be developed to take advantage of the short-block design. It's all about the total package. Compression will be around 13:1 and the intake tract will be developed to attain a port velocity of 200 feet per second at peak torque and 225 feet per second at peak horsepower.

The ports' cross-section area will be matched to the piston speed at peak torque and horsepower. Close attention is required in this area as to not exceed .55 Mach in air speed. Matching all design parameters including mixture charge motion will reduce octane sensitivity, which will allow us to utilize all the compression within the 2,500-6,500 rpm sweep."

Dove Performance; Columbia Station, OH
Jim & David Dove
The primary focus of Dove Performance is the Ford FE engine. Jim Dove has been designing and building engines for over 35 years and Dove Performance Parts has been in business since 1976.

"We are entering the EMC to let the world know what we are capable of. We don't put money into advertising so this is an opportunity of a lifetime for us. Our engine will be a 504 cubic-inch 427-style Ford. We have an older dyno. We think you will have to be in the area of 750 to 800 peak hp to win but if you don't make a lot of low-end power at the same time, peak hp won't help you much. As far as the winning score? We're not sure yet."

Koerner Racing Engines; Tucson, AZ
Jeff Koerner
Koerner's business varies between circle track, drag, marine, and street. He's been doing it for 25 years and had this to say: "After reviewing the last few years' results, we feel we can build an engine that will meet or exceed the best of the best. We will build a Ford with 506 cid and all the goodies." They think they'll make around 850 hp, and their winning score will be about 1,300 points.

Livernois Motorsports; Dearborn Heights, MI
Mark Lyall
"Our primary focus is street cars like late-model Mustangs and GM products (LS1, Corvettes). We also do drag cars and some marine. We have been in business for four years, but have over 50 years of combined experience in engine building. The challenge: we strive to be the best so we want to beat the best in the business. We're building a 509-cid big-block Ford using a Ford Racing iron-block with Super Cobra Jet heads. We'll be testing it on our in-house dyno and hope to make 820 hp and 750 torque with a combined score of 1,250."

M.P.G. Heads; Englewood, CO
Scott Main, Bob Moore
"I've been focused on Ford specialty products, including CNC-ported cylinder heads, CNC-ported intakes, and custom ground camshafts for 25 years. I'm entering the EMC again because it really is a challenge. Plus, it's a little less expensive than campaigning a car. Once again, I'll build a big-block Ford with SCJ heads. I have a chassis dyno, so it's tougher to do engine development testing for the challenge. I think I'll need at least 855 hp to win, but hate to even guess until this thing makes a little noise."

Porting Dynamics; Maple Grove, MN
Dave Storlien
"At Porting Dynamics, my focus has been on cylinder head and intake design and development. I have had customers that have set NHRA records in Super Stock and T/AD and also a national champion in tunnel boats, as well as world speed records with Artic Cat snowmobiles. I started drag racing with my dad in 1955 and started Porting Dynamics in 1972. I love the entire premise of the EMC. I like to test my design theories and the average points system of the EMC is a perfect platform to develop a wide powerband engine. I am building a Ford. The cylinder heads are a much better design than GM and Mopar. Peak HP? I will not even venture a guess. The 14x3 air filter and the 3-inch mufflers may become a limiting factor at 509 cid. Let's just say I hope to have the highest average."

R.M. Competition; Roseville, MI
Randy Malik
Malik is also a returning competitor and he builds street/strip, "Not their everyday transportation" motors, marine engines for "going fast racer-type pleasure boats," road race V-8s, "Class" Stock and Super Stock drag-race engines.

"I've been building engines since I graduated high school, which is 36 years now. I enter to win, however, it's mainly for self-gratification 'cause I don't have the capital. I believe it is necessary to perform the 'nth' degree of preparation. I do believe that given the same amount of money, I am the best. Again, my entry is driven by cost; it's a big-block Ford because it will take me the least amount of funds to make the most horsepower and bang for the buck. Given an endless supply of dollars, I would have chosen a 440-based Chrysler. Winning peak horespower will probably be in the 820 range with a score of around 1,280 points. I don't have my own dyno, so I'll test whatever I can test within one day's time and tune that combo as best I can."

West Bloomfield, MI
Barry Rabotnick
While not a household name to most of you, Barry is well known inside the magazine editor's circles as the go-to guy for bearings, rings, and pistons. He's the guy we call at Speed-Pro when we have questions or need to order engine parts for our stories. He's yanking the 508-cid FE Ford from his car and entering it in our little show, although with a few refinements for the challenge. This'll be interesting.

"I've been assembling engines for a little over 20 years. It's only in the past 5 or 8 years that I've moved beyond the 'buy parts and bolt them together' phase, and been doing things that are more challenging. I've always felt that the Ford FE did not get the level of respect it deserved and the Jeg's Engine Masters Challenge seems like a great place to showcase the FE. The rules of the EMC-average power through a fairly low RPM range and limited head/valvetrain modification play well into the strong points of the FE, and minimize its weaker points. I'll bet that a lot of the heavy hitters will be at or above 800 hp. My target is in the 750-plus range. But peak power is only a small piece of the EMC game. I am content to 'lose' in the peak power battle and will instead concentrate on the rest of the curve."

Total Performance; Santee, CA
Jon Cloud, Greg Grosset
"We will be building a stock-bore, long-stroke 508-cid Ford. We'll run Kaase's CJ heads with high compression and lots of coatings. Hopefully, we have learned enough tricks over the years to add a good performer to the mix here. In the past, the Fords have done well, so we're not really breaking any new ground here, just going with proven pieces."

Dick Miller Racing; Hernando, MS
Dick Miller
Dick Miller Racing specializes in building Oldsmobile engines from restoration to all-out racing. They also manufacture bolt-on rear suspension systems and can provide the parts to build any power train the Oldsmobile community desires. Miller has been building engines since 1964 and built his first Olds in 1970. He's also the lone Oldsmobile hold-out for this year's challenge."I have built Oldsmobile engines each year of the EMC to prove that they can produce excellent power and that they are a good alternative to the typical Chevy, Ford, or Mopar. I will be building a 4.250-bore and 4.490-stroke Olds." Miller says he finds it more cost efficient to lease the dyno from Southern Performance in Southaven, Mississippi, rather than buy his own. "I hope to make 800-plus hp, however it will probably take 850 to 900 to win. I feel a score of total 1,150 to 1,200 will be necessary to win."

Astro Automotive Machine; Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Gino Lancia
"We really enjoy building engines and especially enjoyed competing in '04. It was definitely 'a learner' for us. Good air. Sea level. We really liked how we were treated by the staff at Bill Mitchell's place, too. Pontiacs always make tons of torque for tons of fun. Hope to be more of a contender this year."

Jon Kaase Racing Inc; Winder, GA
Jon Kaase
Kaase is well-known to PHR readers for winning the EMC two years in a row (he's the returning champion). But he's also known for making his living building 815-cid IHRA Pro Stock engines, along with many other sizes and types along the way, for around 37 years. Can he pull off a hat trick this year with his first-ever Poncho? Wait'll you hear why he choose to run a Pontiac this year."I really enjoy the challenge of building a new type of engine. This year, it's a 455-style Pontiac. I like the silver-blue color. I have no history with these engines. That makes it more challenging. I feel the Ford is still the best for EMC, followed by Chevy, Dodge, and Buick. I think peak horsepower will top out around 815. It will take at least 1,275 points to win, so we've