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Short Wheelbase 2002


RussTii

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Pit vehicles are relatively common at the races to lug stuff and people around the paddock. So here's a short wheelbase take on the 2002 as seen at Sebring last weekend. According to the owner turning and braking should not be attempted simultaneously.

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Ha!!  I spoke to the owner of that machine at the Vintage races here in Austin a couple of months ago.  I think I remember him saying it's street legal and everything.  He's a German fellow and it was a family affair with his wife and sons.  I think they're from Florida now?? They were campaigning two cars: A pig-cheek Roundie painted in MotorSport colors with a wicked slide-throttle engine...(sounded mean as hell at WOT on the backstraight) and  yellow and black bumblebee with turbo flares.  They were a lot of fun to talk with...can't remember their name...

 

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Ed Z

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The owner of the "Shorty" and the slide valve car is Peter Herke out of Florida. The slide valve car was originally built by Herke back in the day, sold to a guy in California who raced it, then set it aside. Fast forward 20 years or so, Herke contacts the California guy, asks about the car and is told he can come and get it from the sellers back yard, drivetrain being long gone. So he goes and picks it up, spends 2 years putting it back together and is now running it in vintage. Specs are 13/1 JE pistons, 318 I head with hemi combustion chamber, Shrick 336, Alloy rockers, Shrick slidevalve setup, rear mounted alternator, 15 inch wheels, 4 wheel disc brakes, close ratio 5 speed. The car is so original he's still running a mechanical clutch, raised frontshock tower mounts and an unmodified Kugel pump. Herke's son Andre went out for qualifying and placed 9th out of 29 in Group 3, about 2 seconds from the leader. Unfortunately, a valve stem came off, ate the head, holed number 1 piston and ended their weekend. Spare motor wasn't in the trailer so they became spectators. Shame as he's in my class and I'd like to have seen him eating up the mostly newer competition.

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Fantastic report... except the part where the motor took it on the chin. Damn, that's a shame...  Peter and family were a happy bunch when I met them.  They had actually seen my car in the RV section earlier in the day and his wife was very complimentary.  Andre was running the car here in Austin and it sounded very good. They were searching all over Austin for a dizzy for a Crane set up the Friday I spoke with them ( I think for the bumblebee car..)  I hope I see them at COTA, again next year.

 

Ed

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The Herke's are great people. I meet them at the Mitty  in Atlanta several years ago they had the shorty with them. they took time out of there day and filled me in on the details of both the shorty and the race car. the shorty had rusted badly in the floor area if I remember correctly so they cut the rust out and shortened it. great family

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