Odds on Thornton at Vegas
Photos by Tim Marshall and Paul
Reflections Of Motorsports Photography
Perennial favorite Ed Thornton
of Chino Hills, CA, claimed yet another Pacific Street Car
Association (PSCA) Pro Street final-round victory at The Strip
at Las Vegas Speedway on Sept. 5, 2005. Thornton's black 1957
Chevrolet outran John Scialpi of West Covina, CA, to claim
top honors in the PSCA Product Engineering Las Vegas Nationals.
Thornton defeated Scialpi when Scialpi's blown entry lost
traction early in the run, posting a 6.81/206 to 7.10/207
was an awesome run," Thornton said. "Our luck has
definitely changed for the better after struggling in qualifying.'
Thornton added, "Like they say, it's better to be lucky
than good on race day."
Thornton, clutch specialist Doug Stewart, and engine tuner
Shane Tecklenburg had arrived at the track a day before the
race to test the car. With a new engine combination in the
car, they made a seemingly effortless 6.74/211 test run. What
the team didn't realize until the call for qualifying was
that a pocket in the casting of the head had allowed water
to leak into the combustion chamber. The head had to be replaced
before they could run and they just squeaked into the second
qualifying session because of a delay on the racetrack. Although
they made the field in the No. 4 slot, a small fire erupted
under the hood in the shut-down area, adding to the drama.
"Apparently the silicone we used on the manifold end
seals just had not cured by the time we went to run,"
explained Stewart. "It could only hold the pressure a
little while before it blew oil mist out and the wind pushed
it onto the headers."
Before the final round match up, Scialpi's car was unable
to fire, but Thornton team members assisted in getting it
Thornton increased his points lead over second place Clint
Hairston. Hairston qualified No. 1 at Las Vegas, but was taken
out by Thornton 6.65/219 to 6.81/209.
Other winners were: Roger Lorton (Paxton Index); Jack Gottfried
(Open Comp); Anthony Landolfi (Borla Trophy); and Jim Naffziger
The Las Vegas F-Body Association was also in attendance with
George Mattie's 1974 Camaro Z-28 getting the win over Larry
Devereau's '73 model.