During the dyno runs at the Comp Cams Memphis, Tennessee, dyno facility, each of the contest engines had to go through a qualifying session involving a minimum of three pulls, and a judged session, again involving a minimum of three pulls during a 45 minute period. This is not only to gather dyno data to factor our results, but also to test the durability of the engines. This year we only had one engine that failed to qualify, and it wasn't a catastrophic failure, just an oiling issue in the rocker-arm area of the Diamondback entry that prevented it from making the required pulls. Otherwise, each engine performed well, if not flawlessly, while performing the dyno pulls with the remaining seven engines making impressive power.

Starting with Indy Cylinder Head, we'll run down the order in which our competitors placed. As we stated, it was a close contest with the top positions being determined by a virtual photo finish. The truth is, we'd be proud to have any of these engines in one of our cars as they are all powerful performers. If you're considering a small-block build for your next project, we encourage you to consider one of the professionals featured in our engine challenge. The results of our contest are a good indication that you won't be disappointed. Also, be sure to stay tuned to future issues as we go inside each of these engines and see what parts and tricks were utilized to make them competitive.

Indy Cylinder Head
Indianapolis, Indiana
The name Indy Cylinder Head evokes visions of high-flowing, high-horsepower, aluminum cylinder heads. So when Indy entered a Magnum-headed stroker small-block in our contest, we had to ask what was up. Engine builder Ken Lazzeri of Indy stated that while he'd love to impress everyone with one of their all-out, 700hp small-blocks, the way our contest factored the costs, a cast-iron headed engine would just be more competitive. So he made the tough decision to go for the win instead of going for impressive power. Actually, we think he accomplished both. The Indy entry was not only one of the most economically built engines in the contest, but its 523 hp was nearly as much as some of the more expensive aluminum-headed engines made.

Schurbon Engine And Machine
Maquoketa, Iowa
Schurbon Engine and Machine is a newcomer to our contest, but they made a lasting impression. The Schurbon engine not only looked good wearing its Plum Crazy paint job, but also performed flawlessly during the dyno session and impressed everyone in attendance with its power and torque. Engine builder Scott Schurbon is no newcomer to Mopar small-blocks, having built and raced them in "roundy-pounders" for many years. Scott loves it when a customer asks for a Mopar engine because he says they make great power for the money, so it's easy to deliver more than the customer expects. The Schurbon entry in our contest certainly delivered more than expected when it screamed to nearly 500 hp and a stump-pulling 460 lb-ft of torque. Scott says he likely left a little on the table as well by utilizing a somewhat small camshaft since this engine was built for a street application. Even so, this small-block finished a strong second and was very close to winning this year's competition.

R.M. Competition
Roseville, Michigan
Randy Malik of R.M. Competition had the right combination to land a third place finish in this year's Engine Challenge, narrowly missing an even better showing. All the top three engines were closely matched, and the top three places were determined by a very narrow margin this year. The R.M. Competition entry looked impressive with its tunnel-ram and dual quads, and ran equally as impressively, making some 510 hp and 442 lb-ft of torque. Using Magnum cylinder heads with the LA-style intake bolt pattern, Randy was able to utilize a tunnel-ram intake without significantly adding to the cost of his engine. We congratulate R.M. Competition on their third place finish.