As with any proper g-Machine, the Camaro's underpinnings are the true stars of the show. A Heidts subframe assembly is the foundation of the front suspension, and supports a set of tubular upper and lower control arms, 2-inch drop spindles, QA1 coilovers, and a big, fat, splined sway bar. Out back is a brand-new independent rear suspension system that Randy helped develop with Heidts. The Camaro served as a testbed for the new IRS during the R&D phase, and the assembly includes a 9-inch third member, twin A-arms, CV-jointed halfshafts, and QA1 coilovers. "The IRS works awesome, and makes the back end of the car stick to the track very nicely. I've pounded on the car hard on several road courses, and the limiting factor to how fast you can go is the guy behind the wheel," Randy says. Scrubbing off speed is a set of Baer brakes with six-piston calipers up front and four-piston clamps out back. Forgeline 18-inch wheels FS3P wheels and Nitto NT05 rubber glue the second-gen down to the pavement.

Thus far, nothing on Randy's Camaro sets it apart from the typical all-show-no-go Pro Touring machine, but taking a closer look makes it quite clear that this car is the real deal. Underhood there's an accumulator system to prevent oil starvation on the road course, and a catch can plumbed into the PCV system that keeps oil from shooting out the valve cover breathers during hard cornering. Wilwood tandem master cylinders enable precise control over brake fluid control, and bias is adjustable with a big knob conveniently located on the trans hump behind the shifter. Other clues that give away the Camaro's racy intentions are Cerullo bucket seats and a RideTech six-point road race rollbar and five-point harnesses. Beneath the car is both a power steering cooler and an oil cooler strategically positioned in the air stream.

Not only are the second-gen's stats impressive, everything works extremely well in the real world as well. "This car is so exhilarating to drive on a road course that it's hard to describe," Randy says. "You hit the brakes hard entering a corner, turn in, and feel the back of the car start to get loose as you slowly feed in the throttle and rocket out of a corner. When the motor gets into its powerband on the straightaways, the car hits over 120 mph. It's awesome, and the power is just obnoxious sometimes." If that sounds like someone who's simply hyping up his own car, you don't have to take his word for it. In an annual street car shootout conducted by another magazine that pits racers in a variety of acceleration, handling, and braking contests, Randy's Camaro took First Place in 2010. We don't remember the exact name of the competition, but it has something to do with eliminating real streets.

So in a world of wannabes, how has Randy managed to build a g-Machine that does what it's supposed to do? "You have to educate yourself to build a car like this, and I learned a lot of stuff when I worked on the pit crew of a sportsman oval-track racer when I was younger. I paid close attention to every single part they used on the car," he says. "They ran power steering coolers, oil coolers, breather tanks, and accumulator systems, which are all necessities for a car that's subjected to prolonged cornering loads. On a road course, you need either a dry sump oil system or a good baffled oil pan and an accumulator. You can't push your car hard if you're worried about the oil pressure dropping. Also, having the rollbar and proper safety equipment is a must. It will make you feel much more comfortable, build your confidence level, and allow you to drive faster." Those are words spoken by a man who knows what he's doing. It just so happens that Randy's car is the real deal, not just in the way it performs on track, but also in the sense that it's the one that didn't get away. And how many people can say that?

Dept. Of Corrections
This story is being shown as originally printed in the February 2011 issue, but we inadvertently left out a few names from the build roster. Brad Riekkoff of West Bend Dyno Tuning (West Bend, WI) takes credit for the EFI tune-up, Jeff Miller (Kewaskum, WI) gets credit for the paint work, and Darrell Whitman (West Bend, WI) gets kudos for the sheetmetal work. These omissions will also appear in the April 2011 print issue in our Message Board news section.