Pinks For The Masses
When the timing gear at Memphis Motorsports Park was taken out of action by rain last September during a production of Pinks All Out, Rich Christensen didn't let that stop him. Thinking on his feet, he decided to run the entire event arm-drop style, with spotters at the finish line holding flags to announce the winner. The improvised format was such a success, Christensen is taking the idea, called ArmDrop Live, on the road for 2009. The ArmDrop Live tour will not be televised like Pinks or Pinks All Out, but it will allow for all kinds of whacky racing, including bikes, mopeds, snowmobiles, and ATVs. Oh yeah, and cars too. Christensen says come on out, and bring your video camera. He expects lots of bragging fodder to end up on YouTube. Interested? Check it out on www.armdroplive.com. Here's the tentative list of dates remaining for the 2009 Arm Drop Live tour:

May 1-2 Atco Racway; Atco, NJ
May 15-16 Area 51 Dragway; Roswell, NM
May 22-23 Firebird Raceway; Boise, ID
June 5-6 Toronto Motorsports Park; Cayuga, Ont.
June 26-27 Yellowstone Drag Strip; Acton, MT
July 3-4 Woodburn Dragstrip; Woodburn, OR
July 24-25 Texas Raceway; Kennedale, TX
July 31-August 1 Maple Grove Raceway; Mohnton, PA
August 7-8 Milan Dragway; Milan, MI
August 28-29 Bandimere Speedway; Morrison, CO
September 4-5 Cedars Falls Raceway; Cedar Falls, IA
September 18-19 Bristol Dragway; Bristol, TN
September 25-26 Memphis Motorsports Park; Memphis, TN
October 2-3 Richmond Dragway; Sandston, VA
October 9-10 Heartland Park; Topeka, KS
October 16-17 Tulsa Raceway Park; Tulsa, OK
November 6-7 No Problem Raceway; Belle Rose, LA
November 13-14 Rockingham Dragway; Rockingham, NC

Scale Small-Block V-8
After running a short piece in the April issue about James Weber and his miniature homebuilt 5.655-cubic-inch blown V-8 model (yes, it actually runs!), we got this tip from Dave Ward of Simi Valley, California. He turned us onto Jim Moyer's website, which is stuffed full of real running miniature engines, including this 1/6th scale model of a '64 vintage 365hp, 327-inch Corvette mill. Quoting Moyer from his website: "The head and block began as billet aluminum that have been painstakingly machined on a Bridgeport-style mill. The 5-main crank has real babbit bearings, while the cam is a scale 30-30 Duntov."

Moyer builds all his scale engines himself at home in Boyds, Washington. It's a hobby he first started in 1964 with a four-cylinder overhead cam design of his own called The Coyotee [sic]. Moyer even has YouTube video of his latest creation (shown), which sounds pretty much like a hyper-active chainsaw on a rampage. All the parts in the miniature small-block are exquisitely crafted, and apparently work as well as the original full-sized pieces. Moyer also does work for hire, including welding and machining fabrication for prototype development and small-batch production runs.

Type: 1/6th scale V-8
Displacement: 1.10 ci; 18 cc
Bore: 0.600 in
Stroke: 0.487 in
Ignition: spark
Construction: machined billet
Began construction: 1998
First ran: 11/3/05

Hot cars and rock 'n' roll go together like bacon and eggs, so it's not uncommon to see the pairing of music star and hot car on a regular basis. What you don't see all that often is a seasoned road warrior like Chris Duarte getting down and dirty with a real '68 396 SS Camaro, then writing a high-octane song about it. The title track of Chris Duarte's new CD, 396, is autobiographical, and describes Duarte's love affair with his real life 375-horse '68 SS Camaro. (Chorus: "Runnin' wide open, flyin' on the track, nothin's gonna stop me, gonna get my fix, in my 396...") The title track is a full-throttle Chevy anthem that would sound right at home on a new Camaro commercial-if Chevy were actually to make one. The rest of Duarte's CD is pedal to the metal in the blues/rock tradition of Stevie Ray Vaughan, Rick Derringer, Eric Clapton, and Jimi Hendrix, with a little bit of Aerosmith and Foghat thrown in. Duarte is quite the axe slinger, and despite wielding his Stratocaster with deadly precision over the years, has somehow missed the fame and fortune bestowed on much lesser guitarists.

If you like your rock 'n' roll served up hard core and old school, 396 is the high-octane fix you're looking for. Load it in the CD player in your garage on a Saturday morning, and pretend like it's 1977 all over again. You can find 396 at www.cdfuse.com for $16 (plus $4 S&H).