The Super Street class is in theory all about bracket racing cars that are streetable, though many teams are now removed from that origin. This is far from the case for Carl Taylor.
The national championship holding Chev Belair bubbletop has made its reputation from being able to drive to events, kick everyone’s butt and then make the return home.
“Basically I don’t have adequate space to park a car on a trailer anywhere,” Taylor laughs. “The other issue is not having a tow vehicle with enough power for comfortable towing.
“A few years ago, with these minor details in mind, I set myself a challenge. The Hot Rod mag Drag Week event in the States was also a major inspiration.”
Taylor set about building a very strong, reliable, conservative, large capacity engine.
“It’s a stroked 409 with 10.3:1 comp producing about 525 horsepower on pump fuel,” he said. “A large, efficient radiator up front, strong T400 with a conservative 4000 stall. Lots of gear box fluid cooling. Strong nine inch diff, Detroit locker, Moser axels and 4.11 gears. A tall rear street tire enables 3200 rpm at 100kmh and 3500 rpm at 110kmh.”
Taylor said that he enjoys the technical side of building a competitive street and strip bracket racer on a tight budget.
“I’m still playing and trying different things all the time, not to go faster, but searching for that ever
elusive little bit more consistency,” he said. “If there is anything I have learned it would be to use premium parts the first time.
“There is not one thing that stands out alone with the car that makes it what it is, well except for the stroked 409 under the hood I suppose, but it’s the whole package or combination working together that makes it a winner.
“At the moment, Super Street is my ANDRA bracket of choice and building the car to be reliable and strong enough to run with the top dogs within the class at the track then drive it home has been very challenging and rewarding for sure.”
Theoretically, Taylor believes the car would have no issues traversing the continent from Sydney to Perth!
After racking up the 2012/13 championship, Taylor says he would like to try and defend that this season as well as performing in the NSW championship.
Following his win at the 2012 Nationals, Taylor had to absorb a few hits in the championship chase before finally finding some success again. In fact he only added another 40 points to his total despite doing plenty of travelling.
“I knew if I stuck with it and remained positive the wins would come,” he said. “The losses make you appreciate just how hard it is to win sometimes.”
The season finished with the 2013 Nationals at Sydney Dragway, a track Taylor is very comfortable at.
“After bouncing a few ideas back and forth off my good mate Graeme Cooper, I came up with a game plan, found a tune at the Wednesday test and tune, and stuck with it,” he said.
“The points leader was on 240 and I was on 140, being in sixth position and the bump spot for the championship. Luckily a few things fell my way early in eliminations.
“I didn’t take anything for granted going into each round, remembering my routine and having self-belief that I could do it.
“Considering the dramatic weather conditions and density altitude changes the car was running consistently well, the pressure was immense after the quarter final win with the realisation that I could be the next Aussie Super Street champ if I won the event!
“I think one thing that really helped, and I’m extremely grateful for, was having the experience of being in big meeting finals before.
“The final run sure wasn’t a pretty one but when that win light came on in my lane words cannot describe how I felt.
“The Championship win and back to back Nationals is something I will never forget.”
Taylor wished to pass on his thanks to his wife and kids for standing beside him during his campaign as well as sponsors Burson Auto Parts Brookvale, Peninsular Engine Services Brookvale, Qube Ports and Max at Hoosier Tires.
Written by Mark Shields and Luke Nieuwhof