Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Next Stop for NSRA Nationals: Springfield, MO

Springfield, MO will be host to the next NSRA Nationals event this coming weekend. The 27th Mid-America Street Rod Nationals Plus event will be held at Ozark Empire Fairgrounds in Springfield, and promises a weekend of fun for the whole family. With over 2,000 specialty vehicles expected, these vehicles will show how hugely popular the specialty vehicle hobby is. For the first time, the NSRA will include vehicles from the 50’s, 60’s and 70’s in this event.

In addition to all the street rod eye candy, a variety of activities is planned for kids and adults alike. The Women’s World area with arts and crafts, Friday evening entertainment, the Cruisin’ with Wings Show, Quilt display, swap meet and more will ensure there is never a dull moment. Look for the special ‘Circle of Winners’ display on Sunday to see the award-winning street rods of the 27th Annual Mid-America Street Rod Nationals Plus event.

If you are in the Springfield area, don’t miss this exciting opportunity to get out and celebrate the start of summer.

When: Friday May 28-Sunday May 30
Where: Ozark Empire Fairgrounds, Springfield MO

Friday 8:30AM-5:00 PM
Saturday 8:00AM-5:00 PM
Sunday 8:30AM-2:00 PM

Adults $14
Children 6-12 $5
Under 5 Free

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

AMSOIL-lubed Matrix Takes First Place at T.O.R.C. Event

Ron De Guzman has a true passion for cars and a penchant for taking as much time as needed to create the modifications he envisions for every aspect of his ride. His 2003 Supercharged Toyota Matrix TRD took years of tweaks and modifications to reach the end result it is today. From 12 hour grinds to falling asleep underneath the car, De Guzman puts everything he’s got into finishing what he started.

De Guzman approached AMSOIL back in 2007 as he was preparing his Matrix for SEMA. Toyota was introducing the new body style of the Matrix and looking for the best four in the country when they found this one. They approached De Guzman, took his ride to Las Vegas on a trailer and set him up as a featured vehicle in the Toyota booth. This opened many doors for future opportunities and while at SEMA, Ron met with a representative from the respected and established Los Angeles-based custom auto body shop DONLYSON. It was here that Ron was introduced to the possibility of turning the Matrix into a custom wide body, and he decided to go for it.

It took 2 ½ years to complete the DONLYSON wide-body customization, 4 months to build the DPE wheels, 3-time graphic redesign, plus innumerable aftermarket mods to both the interior and exterior. After years of ongoing tweaking and customization, De Guzman is the owner of the one-and-only true wide body Matrix that never fails to turn heads.

Most recently, De Guzman attended the T.O.R.C. (Toyota Owners & Restorers Club) event and took home first place bragging rights for his Matrix. While lining up behind the other impressive rides waiting to be placed, De Guzman was noticed and slotted ahead of anyone else in a prime piece of show real estate. In addition to his first place ‘Best of Matrix’ win, he secured an interview and professional photo shoot with photoshootmycar.com. AMSOIL is proud to be a sponsor of such a talented builder, enthusiast, and show-stopping Matrix and will be keeping up with his future endeavors.

Friday, May 14, 2010

2010 AMSOIL Street Rodder Road Tour Starts This Weekend

AMSOIL is pleased to announce the official kick-off of the 2010 Street Rodder Road Tour this weekend in Greer, SC for The Cruisin’ to Ocean City Tour. Led by Road Tour Director Jerry Dixie (left) in a custom-built ’27 Roadster Pickup, he is joined by a crew of street rod enthusiasts following in their own rods. This first tour signals the start of summer for these enthusiasts, and is heavily anticipated in the months and weeks leading up to the first departure.

Wherever it goes, the Road Tour creates excitement. Throughout the summer, these enthusiasts embark on 8 different tour legs that take them all over the country to car shows and other events. AMSOIL has been a sponsor of this event since 2008, a partnership that has always been a success. There is still time to sign up for other tours throughout the summer. Check out the remaining tours below and sign up at the end of this blog post for a summer vacation unlike any other.

The Cruise to Ocean City Tour
May 15 -May 23
Southern Rods Greer, NC to Cruisin' Ocean City, Maryland

The Woody's Hot Rodz Tour
May 28 - June 6
NSRA Mid-America Nationals, Springfield, Missouri to
NSRA East Coast Nationals in York, Pennsylvania

The Vintage Air Tour
June 19 -27
San Antonio, Texas, Vintage Air to
NSRA Rocky Mountain Nationals in Pueblo, Colorado

The Factory Five Racing Tour
July 11 -18
Wareham, Massachusetts, Factory Five Racing to
Syracuse Nationals in Syracuse, New York

The Intercity Lines Tour
July 30 - August 8
Los Angeles, Street Rodder Magazine offices to
NSRA Street Rod Nationals - Louisville, Kentucky

The Dynamat Tour
August 8 -16
NSRA Street Rod Nationals at Louisville, Kentucky to
Bonneville Speed Week in Wendover, Utah

The Canadian Classic Cars
September 10 - 19
NSRA Nationals North in Kalamazoo, Michigan to
NSRA Northeast Nationals in Burlington, Vermont

The Sherm's Plating Tour
Oct 9 - 17
Sacramento, California, Sherm's Plating to
The NHRA California Hot Rod Reunion in Bakersfield, CA

Enjoy the summer... Take it to the streets!

AMSOIL Street Rodder Road Tour Registration Forms

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Off-Road Design Finishes 6th in KOH Endurance Series Race

Yesterday we received a couple photos from Stephen & Brandon Watson whose rock-crawling 4x4 was put to the test in April's King of the Hammers (KOH) event last month. Here's a quick snapshot.

Stephen and Brandon Watson of Off-Road Design recently completed a run in the 2nd King of the Hammers Endurance Series, titled Best in the Desert Silver State 300 held in Las Vegas. Desert conditions are punishing to even these rock-crawling 4x4’s, and holds no prisoners. The event started off well for the Watson brothers, with a test run and two weeks of preparations gearing up for the challenge that prepared them as much as possible for what to expect. The King of the Hammers event is the ultimate test in off-road endurance racing, and is considered to be the toughest off-road race in the world. These endurance series separate the weak from the strong, ensuring only the fittest make it to the King of the Hammers main event.

Things were off to a good start for the Watsons with the confidence they had what it took to win, or at very least take a podium position. In 2nd position in their class out of 16 for the start, Stephen took the driver’s seat for the first 165 miles of the race before Brandon took over. After miles through the treacherous terrain of silt, sand and water they were momentarily sidelined to change an air filter but managed to gain a lead of only seconds. Soon after, a large rock in a wash bank wiped out their front tire which cost them the lead while they stopped and fixed it. Once back on track, they managed to stay in the running until yet another rock took out their wheel, brake caliper and rotor. Still down but not defeated, they were able to manage a quick fix to get them to the finish. Despite the hardships they faced late in the race, they still finished 6th in their class and are already thinking about the next one.

With AMSOIL is installed in their rock crawler, Steven took the time to send some nice words our way:
"The confidence to run this car as hard as we did is irreplaceable, we were never concerned about a drivetrain problem. And unlike some of the other competitors, we're not rebuilding the car after the race, in fact we've considered running another 300 mile event this weekend."

For more information on rock crawling and off-road competition, check out AMSOIL sponsored Lovell Racing.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

2010 Diesel Power Challenge: And the Winner is…

Dimitri Millard of Highland, UT took home the title of Ultimate Diesel Truck owner in the 2010 Diesel Power Challenge in an extremely close race for first. His 2001 Chevrolet Silverado 2500HD was tied with Brian Parker and his 2006 Dodge Ram 2500, where it ultimately came down to the fuel economy test to break the tie.

Despite heavy flooding with up to ten feet of water at the track in Bowling Green, the show went on by moving to an alternate track in Nashville. After three days of challenges including a dyno test, 1/8 mile drag race, 30,000-lb sled pull and fuel economy test, these trucks were categorically pushed to their limits. Out of 15 capable competitors, this years’ challenge humbled 4 of some of the mightiest diesel trucks in the nation and took them out of the running.

Full coverage of the 2010 Diesel Power Challenge will be forthcoming in future issues of Diesel Power Magazine, as well as a DVD of the action. As producer of the world’s finest synthetic lubricants, AMSOIL looks forward to providing more diesel powerhouses with that extra edge in future Diesel Power Challenges.

How They Finished
Dimitri Millard of Highland UT
2001 Chevrolet Silverado 2500HS

Brian Parker of Milton, KY
2006 Dodge Ram 2500

Dustin Mintern of Greenville, NC
2001 Chevrolet Silverado 2500HD

Look for the full finishing order in Diesel Power magazine later this fall.

Photos: Dmitri's red #7 threw down good numbers on both the dyno and on the track to get things started, and held on against stunning competition to bring it on home.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Diesel Power Challenge: The Final Paces

This morning the diesel gladiators are taking a one hundred mile tour of Central Kentucky in one of the softer sides of the Diesel Power Challenge (DPC), the Fuel Economy Test. Even though the trucks are wired and dialed in to produce power, they must also remain roadworthy. The points from this morning's run will be used for the tiebreaker should such be necessary.

But the competition is fierce. Matt Handwork of New Plymouth, Ohio, is on hand with his 2003 Chev Silverado 2500HD. He might look strong back home but here the competition is serious. "I’ll tell you what, I’ve followed every challenge and I’ve never seen such a stacked group of trucks," Handwork said. "This is pretty impressive. You know when you’re running around your local neighborhood and you think you have the big powerhouse and you show up at something like this and you could easily finish 16th out of 16 trucks, it’s something else."

Today the diesel gladiators will be corralled at the Franklin County Fairgrounds to be put to the final test, a 30,000 pound sled pull. In a matter of hours we'll see who has what it takes.

The best picture of what's going down in Bowling Green is to jump over to DieselPowermag.com. They've uploaded hundreds of photos, interviews and more. Be sure to wear your earplugs.

Top Right: Zach Gunther(R) shows director Larry Saarvela the current standings while technicians set up the brake test sensors and gear.Lower Left: Larry instructs the cameraman as they set up a show with AMSOIL tech manager in the driver's seat of David Kennedy's ride.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

DPC Day Two: Music City Raceway

Due to the weekend's inclement weather (i.e. excessive rainfall) the Beach Bend Raceway found itself underwater this week. Fortunately, this part of the country features an assortment of alternative venues and Day Two of the Diesel Power Challenge (DPC) was held just outside of Nashville at a sweet little track called Music City Raceway. The weather was perfect for a trio of events to be conducted here.

The first, straight up eighth mile drags. The track was prepped, the trucks dialed in, and the morning open for as many passes as the competitors dared. Dared is the right word because when putting this much power down, things can and often do break. It takes courage to see what these trucks are really capable of. The second event today was to run the same eighth mile but towing a 10,000 pound load.

The final challenge today, which has never been part of the challenge before, was a braking test. How quickly can the trucks come to a complete stop at sixty miles per hour. This challenge the morning's fuel economy tour were to be used to determine a winner in the event of a tie.

Robert Evans, last year's champion, had to withdraw due to issues they were unable to resolve yesterday. His mood was upbeat, like the champion he is. In fact, most of these competitors have learned through first hand experience that when pushing equipment to the extreme, breakdowns show you where your limits are.

We asked Diesel Power magazine editor David Kennedy how the DPC came about. He explained, "I think we were looking for a format to sanction diesel performance. Not just one kind of drag racer or sled pulling where it gets really extreme, but the kind of diesel performance that a guy could drive his truck and relate to every day. That’s the key to this event is that these trucks are becoming more and more impressive every year but is still based on a truck that has a license plate the guy could drive to work back and forth and that really shows the power of diesel."

Diesel power is impressive. AMSOIL has been impressed by the commitment and creativity of the participants. But tomorrow afternoon, only one truck will go home champion for 2010. Will it be a Dodge, Ford or Chev? Last year, Team Cummins got the honors and Robert Evans also received a $500 AMSOIL Shopping Spree.

Photo Captions
Top Right: Camera crew films Molly Brown introducing the action here at Music City Raceway.
Top Left: A pair of the many passes down the 1/8 mile. A number of the trucks laid down truly spectacular numbers.
Mid-Right: Self-explanatory... Action, Take One... the Brake Test.
Lower Left: It's all about power.

Lower Right: It's a CAT. The crew hooks up the trailer with a 10,000 pound load. This is the real thing.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Diesel Power Challenge, Day One

Bad weather hit hard this weekend with floods ravaging communities from Tennessee to Georgia but today, here in Bowling Green, the sun was hot and the sky blue as sixteen diesels from around the country gathered for the 2010 Diesel Power Challenge (DPC). It is the second year this event was scheduled for Bowling Green, but there's been a twist. Day two will not be held at the Beach Bend drag strip because Beach Bend is ten feet underwater. Tomorrow we'll head down the highway to an alternate track outside Nashville. But that's another story.

The DPC begins long before this first week in May here in Bowling Green. It begins months in advance as the magazine invites diesel enthusiasts to send in their truck photos and specifications for consideration to participate in the challenge. The first challenge is for the editors and publishers of Diesel Power magazine, to narrow the field down to five contenders from each diesel brand, plus last year's champion Robert Evans of Nevada.

The week itself actually began Monday evening as director Larry Saarvela assembled the Source Interlink staff and a freelance film crew from Nashville to go over the details of what the week would consist of.

This is a made for TV event that provides editorial content for the magazine. This is the fourth year AMSOIL has been a sponsor of the event which, this year, will also be a ninety minute program on the Outdoor Channel, which reaches 30 to 40 million households. The major manufacturers -- Ford, Chevy and Dodge -- have also become increasingly interested in how their vehicles are being modified for these ultimate tests.

Day One is the dyno test, at TS Performance. It's a somewhat time consuming affair but emotional for every team as they strive to pull the best numbers possible. The somewhat tedious task of tying down each vehicle can make the day drag, but the end result can be exhilarating. Occasionally there is even some unexpected drama, but you'll have to wait for the DVD to see what that was about.

Here are a few photos to give a feel for what we're seeing here, knowing the best is yet to come.

Top Right: Editor David Kennedy shows the film crew the primary features of these diesel gladiators that are the stars of the show, highlighting key areas to watch for trouble and other things to highlight.
Top Left: An example of the level of sophistication many of these competitors bring to Bowling Green. This cockpit has every sensor dialed in to allow optimal adjustments at every stage of the game.
Lower Right: Molly Brown, AMSOIL Technical Product Manager, is again serving as the on air spokesperson for the Diesel Power Challenge, here being filmed interviewing one of the competitors just before he gets hooked onto the dyno.