> LETTER OF THE MONTH

EVENT HORIZON

Gary Shepherd, email

AS SOMEONE whoís building a car with a clutch, I agree with Nikk MacRaeís letter (SM, Jun í17) regarding the Optima Ultimate Street Car Invitational (right). It would be fantastic if there was something similar here. Iíll be entering Geelong Revival and Iím checking out Victorian hillclimb events, but apart from that there doesnít seem much around. I enjoy reading about events such as Drag Week and looking at the cars that have been built for it, but they donít really tick the boxes for me.

My Firebird is being built to be a pro touring/track day car, with Shane Withers at Valigrunt Performance in charge of the build. Iíve had it for over 20 years and itís on the second rebuild. The engine is a Pontiac 455 HO block, stroked out to 501ci, connected to a Tremec T56 with an Xtreme aluminium crossmember.

A three-inch hand-fabricated chrome-moly tailshaft sits in between hand-fabbed connector rails and runs to a nine-inch rear end with 3:25 gears, McDonald Brothers four-link and Viking shocks. Itís been minitubbed and runs 12-inch Wilwood brakes with fourpot calipers all íround.

Does SM know of any events that I could be checking out?

HEY mate, Harrop runs an Optima-style event in October and weíve had something like that on the back-burner for a long time, as have our mates at MOTOR mag. Ė Telfo