I used to do a lot of street racing 1975-ish to 1985-ish
when in HS
Class of 77' baby
Early on like late 1975, my sophomore year
El Centro rd. outskirts of Sacramento Ca. (ElCamino area)
after cruising J street or the Sunrise Mall for babes or both
my 68 Charger R/T GG1 dark green/black guts & top,
I got in 1974 for $350
I 1st put Cragers all 4 corners & N50/15 Pro-tracs on the back
about in mid 1975
'I hated the look of the org. 14" wheels & hubcaps', Big O 70s
saved for a year to do the mods, working for $1.65 - $3.00 an/hr
Paul Petterson Shell
I started the build
org. 70k+ 440 mild cam, 284/484 hydr. purple shaft/727 TF with B&M shift kit
Edelbrock Torker intake (or Tarantula I don't remember which, had both)
770 Holley 7310 (?) vac. sec. 4 bbl
my Stepdad Bob (lived in Antioch with my Mom) gave me from his spares
14"x3" element Moroso drop base Gold air-cleaner & VCs
Hedman 'Hedders' 1-3/4" long tube, 3" collectors
into the stock 2-1/4" factory Mufflers/exhaust with H-pipe
I had many different 8-3/4 sets of gears in it,
stock 3.55:1 to 5.13:1
3.90 4.10 4.30 4.56. 4.88 you name it I had them/tried them
got them doing work for a guy my Dad knew,
they were in a storage shed of one of the places
cleaning up Moble Home Park properties in Auburn Ca.
(MY Dad Harvey was a contractor Add-On Home improvements)
the steep gears were tough driving down from Georgetown/Garden Valley
area ElDorado Co., down to Sac. like 75 miles each way
I knew who to pick on, I knew not to go after the lighter cars, with v8s
lots of V8 Vegas & Monzas or Gen 1 Camaros or Mustangs roaming the streets
in a heavy 4,000# beast
, I mainly raced the guys in full-size cars
like Chevelles, Buick GS, 442s or Galaxies/Tornios/Cyclones etc.
faired pretty damn well, it almost never lost
gears were the big difference
get that heavy pig out of the hole 'fast' & never let up...
Car was only like 13.30 @ 107 (? IIRC), but fast enough...
I had one guy from Fairfield Scott H. that had a (later he moved to Concord)
piss yellow/black 70 GS 455/TH400 Stage 1, with fat tires & Polished slots
he & I would go back & forth, I think I had the better record
pretty much an even match...
I had another guy Ron H. (from ElDorado Hills $$$, above Sac out hwy50)
he had a 69 Torino GT 390/C6 lite-met. green fastback
about the same mods as my 68 Charger had...
I raced him a dozen times if not more over like 2 years
he never could beat me, he'd do something new & come out a month later...
We'd line up & I'd put a car on him, only beat him by just enough
that was the deal back then if you had them covered
you didn't want to beat them too bad, nobody else would line up against you...
There was this guy with a 69 Camaro built 400+cid sbc 2x4bbl tunnel-ram
2 holley dbl pumpers, a really nice RS/SS blue & black, he hounded me to race
we raced a couple of times, he would edge me out, by a fender...
He was 1,000#s lighter too...
I finally beat the guy in my Junior year, he never would race me again...
It was sketchy out there (El Centro especially) narrow rd.,
(Ball Cannery was nice smooth rd)
A guy sitting down at finish line off to the side
with his lights on while we raced, he'd flash them if the Police were coming
usually the CHP, he'd call the races if it wasn't obvious or really close...
In the spring of my Junior year 1976
I put some $$ into my Charger after I wrecked it on J street cruise,
I ran into the back of a 68 Camaro all jacked-up, he stopped suddenly
& we (5 of us from Ponderosa HS, Shingle Springs) were checking out chicks
& didn't see him stopped, fucked up my Charger front end & grill
folded in his rear quarters bad, his went on the hook...
I drove mine off, after putting Bubble gum
in the holes in my radiator & jumping on the hood to get the bend out
just so we could close it & drive 75+ miles back home...
I put a 292/509 Racer Brown cam, Rhoades anti-pump up lifters
& met a guy Bill Starmerjohn (spell),
a great older gentleman, a cylinder-head guy,
showed me what to do on a set of 906s
pocket porting & gasket matched the intake & heads
matching dual springs for cam, CM retainers & keepers/locks, Teflon seals
& a 5 angle valve job, woke that 440 up...
Edelbrock 'Tarantula' (canted carb) Manifold I know that time...
A 950cfm 3bbl Holley all the same bolt-on stuff &
hooker 2" long-tube headers 3-1/2" collectors, Holeshot 3,000 stall converter
4.56:1 gears, the car ran great...
We went out to Ball Cannery rd in Fairfield, out by Travis AFB
lots of flyboys out there racing, met quite a few good guys, with cars
raced anyone & everyone that'd line up against me, V8 Vegas were the craze
I waxed them all...
Raced a guy with a badass looking 70 Camaro 454 LS6 or LS7 I suspected
Dan M. he was from Walnut Creek/Concord area...
(later would see the guy a lot after I got out of HS & moved back to Concord Ca.)
he was the fastest guy there, hands down...
We lined up & I a put a car length on him out of the hole
he was having trouble getting traction (up in smoke, still fast as hell thou)
& I just walked it out & nailed it in 2nd, kept the car length thru the finish
foot buried on the floor... (I rarely ever did that)
His was a legit 11. sec. 120+mph car...
Left there with my chest so inflated, I thought I'd never come down off that high
went to Sacramento grudge night Wed. night Races, still on street tires N50s
it's run 12.90's at like 112, all day long...
I was addicted to drag racing & especially street racing
or Out Bass Lake rd. in HS day especially in Placerville area
lots of street squirrels, stock cars mostly, just tires & wheels added
we even raced backward a time or two...
Made a lot of friends out there that are still friends today
remember this was late 70's way before any good traction DOT tires/street-tires
you either ran slicks or street tires, hardly anything in between
to be continued...
when I get into my memory banks of the
Antioch, Pittsburg 10th St, some serious showdown
& wrecks (not me)
& Nairobi Nats 1/8th mile more like 400' races & hardly any shutdown area
right off the side of westbound hwy-4 in Pittsburg Ca
(it wasn't called that, is was a far more derogatory term)
or my extensive Concord/Walnut Creek Ca races era