The MSD True Street Challenge must be the most unique racing class in the country. In its 14-year history, the rules haven't changed one bit, and the performance of the cars hasn't slipped inexorably into the realm of absurdity, either, like so many other "street" classes. We've seen it happen every year-a really cool class starts out as a grassroots deal, and ends up as rich-guy racing by the end of the season.

That'll never happen to MSD True Street, and here's why: Only an idiot would build a race car for this class. To license it, register it, insure it, drive it 30 miles on the street and back-to-back down the quarter-mile three times without being able to pop hood between rounds, and only win $250 when you're done? We won't argue if somebody decides to do it, but let's face it, they'll meet more laughter than praise if they do. Nope, True Street is tailgate-grilling family fun, not spark-plug readin', data-logger mappin', clutch-adjustin' science.

Three years ago, Popular Hot Rodding and the NMCA got together with MSD to sponsor the True Street Challenge because it made the most sense for you, the readers. You wanted real street cars you could relate to-not race cars masquerading as streetable-and the arrangement has worked great for all involved. As a result, we're doing it again in 2007, starting right here with the season opener in Bradenton, Florida. If you missed MSD True Street and want to take part with your own car, there are plenty more opportunities-just go to the NMCA Web site at for a schedule. The rules are simple: It's gotta be a street car with working street equipment, and the car must be registered, licensed, insured, and able to finish a 30-mile street drive followed by three back-to-back dragstrip passes. The driver with the fastest three-run average wins, but we also give out prizes for runner-up, as well as to those whose three-run averages are closest to, but not quicker than, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, and 15 seconds.

MSD True Street will be held at all NMCA events this year, and PHR will also be there to cover the two events in Joliet, Illinois (July 19), and Memphis, Tennessee (October 11). See you there!