One of the nice things about the hobby we share is that there are many great ways to enjoy your classic Mopar. Spending the day at a car show can be a relaxing break from the routine of everyday work. Taking your car for a drive through the country is also a good reminder of why we love our cars so much. To this author, there is no more enjoyable way to have fun with a Mopar than spending a day, evening, or weekend racing at the dragstrip.

When it comes to racing cars, however, most enthusiasts cringe at the thought of big budgets, high maintenance, and broken parts, which make drag racing a seemingly expensive way to have fun. we're going to change that misconception by showing that a fast, safe, and competitive race car can be built for far less than you may think. We'll show you where to concentrate your spending, and where you can save money by utilizing original factory equipment or used parts.

This will not be a project on how fast you can go for a ridiculously low budget. It doesn't take much creativity to hack the fenders out of an A-body for big tires and put in a junkyard 440 with a bunch of nitrous to run a number once or twice at the dragstrip. This project is going to be a real-world build of a cool car that will be legal, certified, consistent, safe, and can be raced for multiple seasons with very little maintenance. The sweet part is we'll do it for less money than it takes to restore a '67 Valiant!

The Driver
Lakeland, Florida, resident Amy Coleman has been into Mopars since before she started driving. Like many enthusiasts, she inherited her love of Chrysler products from her father, who has never owned anything else. After getting her drivers license, Amy's first vehicle was the family farm truck equipped with a 360 engine, four-barrel Thermoquad carburetor, and headers. With her heavy right foot, she found this truck could easily handle the Firebirds and Camaros in her high school parking lot-embarrassing the guys and cementing her already devout affection for Mopar iron. While she was in college, she dated a guy who owned a '68 Road Runner, which further reinforced her opinion that Mopars were the cars to beat at the dragstrip and on the streets. He would take her to Mucie Dragway on the weekends, open the headers, change the rear tires to slicks, and run quicker than any of the other cars that were driven to the track.

Since then, Amy has owned several Mopar street cars, even occasionally bracket racing them, but has never had a purpose-built race machine. She knew building a car herself would be beyond her mechanical skills, and that paying others to do it could lead to being ripped off (unfortunately, that still happens to women in this industry), so she enlisted our help through a mutual friend. As we are always eager to see more Mopars at the track competing with the abundance of Chevelles, Camaros, and Mustangs, we were happy to help. Amy will be contributing both money and labor to the effort, and is eager to hone her mechanical skills as we work on the project.