The Orange County fairgrounds in Costa Mesa, California, served as the playground for grown-up kids and their cars for the third annual Goodguys Get-Together. Only being the third year for Goodguys in Orange County, it's a baby compared to the veteran California events such as Del Mar, in its ninth year, and Pleasanton, going on 23 years. Though just starting out, this show has proven to draw quite a crowd. Southern California's mild sunny weather suits automotive hobbyists perfectly, and it's only natural for car guys and gals to migrate to its warmth. We weren't blessed with SoCal's usual smell of sun screen, but victim to frequent overcast and temperatures in the 50s--unseasonably cold to the natives. That didn't stop Goodguys' loyal crowd from attending though.
Goodguys has been around since 1983, giving people of all budgets and abilities a place to show off their cars, and enjoy the company of others who share the same passion. The traditional car-show format changed drastically when Goodguys introduced the Street Challenge autocross two years ago. The Street Challenge autocross gets people up off their folding chairs and behind the wheel of their cars, showing off what they can do besides sit and look pretty. Cars with cornering power to go with power are getting popular, and are admired more now than ever before. Since it's hard to put a number on handling performance, besides a skidpad rating, it's nearly impossible to show what your car is made of on paper. Quarter-mile times and dyno results do a great job of sharing a straight-line car's capabilities, but they don't help the guys who spend their bucks on tubular control arms instead of a power-adder. That is the fantastic thing about the Street Challenge: since it doesn't occupy the large footage of a competition-style autocross event, a ton of horsepower doesn't really improve your times. The Street Challenge drew a diverse crowd; it wasn't just the big-braked, hyper muscle cars, but a collection of cars from every era and performance level. It was clear the challenge was less of a competition, and more about just having fun with the car you brought.
There's more to the shows than just the Street Challenge autocross. Over 100 vendors came to the show with their trailers loaded with project cars, product, and demonstration material. Car shows are often the only opportunities that manufacturers get to dazzle us with the new products they've made. Companies like Air Ride and Detroit Speed & Engineering were not only showing off their goods in their booths, but also flexing their muscles out on the autocross course. If you don't mind walking around with them, you can even purchase parts too.
The rest of the show consisted of guys and gals who love cars. Since the show was open to all years of domestic cars and trucks, the spread of vehicles to look at was vast. No matter what you're into, from late-model Mustangs to '32 Fords, there was something to tickle your fancy. We walked every inch of the show, talking to people who were excited about their rides and about being there, which we can't get enough of. There were so many cars we wanted to cover but we just can't fit them all in here. Every Goodguys show we've attended over the years has been a fun-filled family oriented experience. We can't think of a better way to spend a weekend with your car buddies or family than at a Goodguy's car show.
To quiet the smack-talkers and glorify the true driving heroes, Goodguys created the Editors' Challenge. This is the chance for magazine editors and contributors to show off their skills in their own project cars or ones supplied by the participating vendors. The 10 contestants have an hour to squeeze in as many runs as they can, and the best lap time wins. A couple of the editors, such as Steven Rupp from Camaro Performers, and David Freiburger from Hot Rod, had their own cars; the rest shared the driver seats of cars built by Air Ride and Detroit Speed and Engineering. The Air Ride-built Goodguys giveaway '70 Nova named Super Nova even made an appearance. The author even got a single pass in Air Ride's '66 Chevelle, and ran a 35.804. PHR photographer, Robert McGaffin, had much better luck, and whittled his time down to 31.877, which was good for Fifth Place. The top spot went to Steven Rupp in his familiar Bad Penny Camaro, running a 29.69 lap time.
|EDITORS' CHALLENGE RESULTS |
|Driver: ||Magazine: ||Car: ||Time: |
|1. Steven Rupp ||Camaro Performers ||'68 Camaro ||29.694 |
|2. Jim Campisano ||Super Chevy ||‘70 Camaro ||29.978 |
|3. Nick Licata ||Camaro Performers ||’69 Camaro ||30.107 |
|4. Jeff Smith ||Car Craft ||’66 Chevelle ||31.783 |
|5. Robert McGaffin ||Popular Hot Rodding ||’66 Chevelle ||31.877 |
| 6. David Freiburger ||Hot Rod ||’65 Chevy Malibu ||32.849 |
| 7. Travis Noack ||Muscle Car Power ||’66 Chevelle ||34.299 |
| 8. Kev Elliot ||Rod & Custom ||’46 Ford Pickup ||34.906 |
| 9. Liz Miles ||Popular Hot Rodding ||’66 Chevelle ||35.804 |
| 10. Matt Degen ||Orange County Register ||’70 Supernova ||35.869 |
|STREET CHALLENGE WINNERS |
|CLASS: ||DRIVER: ||CAR: ||TIME: |
|Editors ||Steven Rupp ||'68 Camaro ||29.694 |
|Street Machine ||Mike Hodges ||'04 Corvette ||28.964 |
|Vendor ||Kyle Tucker/DSE ||’70 Camaro ||29.183 |
|Street Rod ||Aaron Vukasovich ||'41 International Pickup ||34.280 |
Look back to the cover of...
Look back to the cover of last month's issue, and you'll see a beautiful '70 Chevelle. This isn't your average muscle car; it's built strong and designed to idle forever, thanks to a Chevy Duramax diesel powerplant. This bio-diesel A-body blasted around the autocross course leaving the smell of fresh French fries as it passed.
Ron Lindmann of Lake Forest,...
Ron Lindmann of Lake Forest, California, has worked as a body man all his life. He's showcased his talents through this '65 El Camino/GTO. He started out with a factory El Camino and twisted and molded bodywork from a '65 GTO to give the truck a makeover. He told us he wanted it to look how the factory would have made it. He even took the time to transplant a Pontiac motor!
Mary Pozzi smoked the competition...
Mary Pozzi smoked the competition with her '73 Camaro that sports Hotchkis suspension and stock leaf springs. Even with the old-school parts, the 11-time national Solo II champ was within thousandths of a second to the lowest time of the day from a Corvette Z06 that couldn't accomplish the winning miracle lap a second time. Mary has a long list of accomplishments in her career; but this event was just for fun.
James Shipka made it all the...
James Shipka made it all the way from Calgary, Canada, to show his '67 Camaro and run it in the Street Challenge autocross. This Camaro houses a modern driveline consisting of a brand-new LS7 and T-56 transmission. His best run of the day was 31.620, a respectable time, but he believes it can go a lot faster with some tweaking. He plans on getting everything sorted before this year's One Lap of America. To find out more about this Camaro, visit James' website at www.onelapcamaro.com.
With help from his father,...
With help from his father, Richard, Deacon Markey built this '63 Nova Convertible. Usually when you see a topless ride like this one, you don't think performance, but this one demands it. It's LS1 powered, and has a Scott's front suspension and Hot Rods To Hell truck-arm rear. His mini-tub and large tires helped him plant the uncushioned power from the T-56 to give him a 32.34-second lap time.
Two-Tone Nova This '66 Nova...
This '66 Nova belongs to Bobby Patitucci of Hacienda Heights, California. He bought this car with the coilover suspension and Strange 9-inch fab work done,.....
......but gave it his own...
......but gave it his own personal touch by adding old-school drag-inspired wheels, two-tone paint, and a race-inspired interior......
.....He also added an aluminum...
.....He also added an aluminum deck-lid spoiler. The engine bay is extremely clean and well thought-out. We especially liked the Quik II lettering on the valve covers.
Would you look at the size...
Would you look at the size of those front tires? Holy moly! Patricia Mark of Long Beach, California, was nice enough to pose next to her husband's '70 Cuda for us. We don't think it was the first time she had been asked though.