|"I put the winning bid on the car for $4500 and won it." This is how Tow Worrall acquired his Lemans from a sailor who had it up for auction on Ebay. As it turned out, Tom lives in Hampton, VA, not too far from Norfolk and the big Navy installation there. Before Tom made any bids he got to test drive and inspect the car thoroughly. Despite some minor rust and a sloppy front suspension, Tom decided to bid. Along with the successful bid came a set of 66 GTO grills, a bag of bolts, a set of polyurethane bushings and a desire to make things happen! The Pontiac engine was supposed to be a 455. It wasn't and Tom knew it. After becoming the new owner, the car was rolled on to a chassis dyno to see just what power the engine developed. "All she could muster, " Tom reported, was a mere "235 RWHP."
Seek and ye shall find! While hunting for some unrelated parts, Tom met a guy with two 428s sitting under a tarp in his back yard. Tom purchased the 4 bolt main engine, carb to pan from him. After participating with the car at Pontiacs in the Park event in May 2004, Tom was bent on making some real horsepower. Changes need to be made and not just to the engine. He started at the rear axle and installed a Ford 9" with 3.70 gearing, spool and 33 spline axles. Then he tackled the front end and fixed everything there.
With a big journal 428, Tom focused on getting aluminum heads and opted for KRE heads as he believed they had more efficient chambers than other aluminum castings. Once purchased, Tom delivered the engine, heads and port matched Torker II intake to Central Virginia Machine Services for all the machine work and build.
Tom missed running at the 2005 Pontiacs in the Park because his engine was still in progress, but did go in 2006, where the Lemans ran 11.8 quarters and then in 2007, where the car ran 11.7s pretty consistently.
The 433 engine currently runs a solid roller cam. However, it started out with a hydraulic roller cam that encounted lifter problems. While driving the car one day, he noticed a very loud clicking noise that continued to get louder and louder. Tom pulled the intake and found a broken hydraulic lifter. The axle on one roller lifter had failed and spun breaking the bar that linked one lifter to another. Comp Cams honored the warranty but Tom opted for a custom solid roller set up which is noted in the engine specs below.
One thing that is a bit different with Tom's Lemans, and noticeable at the strip, is the engine's exhaust sound. The solid roller and KRE make beautiful music together...an engine sound that is a head-turner. Very cool, indeed. Tom's engine is a member of PSP's 1 to 1 Club.
|The engine was built by Central Virginia Machine Services.|
|Kauffman Racing Equipment (KRE) d-port heads provide a modest pump gas compression.|
|Black-primered fiberglass hood sports a threatening hood scoop.|
|60' foot times vary between 1.69 to 1.77 seconds depending on track conditions and temperature.|
|This timeslip is a bit hard to read, it was faded when issued. Tom's Lemans is # 361 in the left lane.|
|Tom likes gauges. Can you tell? Notice the MSD unit under the dash.|
|Adjustable upper and lower control arms, Lakewood bolt on ladder bar kit and Lakewood 70/30 shocks, QP Ford 9" housing. Spool with Moser 33 spline axles, poly bushings front and rear.|
|Copyright © 2007. Bill Boyle. All rights reserved.|