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Some AMC short track pix/history Brand "X" Javelin

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amxess View Drop Down
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    Posted: Sep/18/2009 at 5:29pm
A friend asked if I had any info on a Javelin race car called the Brand "X" that he said always won when he saw it race as a kid at the local short tracks in the midwest. I looked into it and got some nice history on the car from the owner's son Chas, and found out that it's engine went on to race in another very succesful Javelin race car.  
 
In 1974, Ed Howe of Howe Racing, who is now known as one of the best race car chassis builders around, put together a Javelin to race throughout the Midwest and Canada. Not many really raced many AMC's in this venue and I guess he wanted to show he could build a race chassis for any car and win.  
 
He bought two AMC engines from Traco, which he immediately blew up. He'd repair them and though almost always in the lead, the engines would blow again causing some of those behind to hit the wall due to the oil on the track. The other drivers soon had a saying "If you want to crash, follow the Nash!" Well, Ed had enough of the DNF's, and soon used pieces from both motors and built his own using aftermarket Chevy rods, pistons, valves and springs. The block, crank, and heads remained AMC parts.  
 
After this engine was installed, he won just about every race and the car was very well known. Unfortunately he only raced it the one year. Ed did lend it to Tom Maier who ran it for one race at the Mosport Canada Road Circuit, where he finished second only to Bobby Allison. At the end of the season, Ed sold the engine to Tom Reffner of Wisconsin, who put it in his famous "Blue Knight" Javelin which was sponsored by Super America Gas Stations, and from what I've read, this car was also very succesful.
 
The Brand "X" car was turned into a Camaro and Chevy powered and became the "Hoosier" car. Too bad AMC didn't offer more performance parts back during this time as Ed clearly showed the AMC's could beat the best of the big three. Why AMC used Traco I have no idea, as I've not read anything good about them from the drivers who raced AMC's. Those who were succesful always ended up building their own AMC engines. Why Ed changed back to Chevy I can't say, but I'd probably guess he was discouraged at the lack of parts for a race AMC engine.  
 
Attached are photos of the Brand "X" car (the B&W photo shows one of the Traco engines blowing up). The other photos are of Tom Reffner's "Blue Knight" in which the "X" engine ended up in, and also attached a photo of the "Hoosier" Camaro.
 
AMXESS
 

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69LSXAMX View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote 69LSXAMX Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jan/28/2010 at 10:38pm
awesome pictures
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scott View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote scott Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jan/29/2010 at 10:04am
Those humps look just right with the giant tires! Great pics & writeup!!!  Thanks for posting them.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Racing Ray Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jan/30/2010 at 9:53am
Great story AMXess.  Thanks for posting it.
Ray
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote amxess Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Feb/02/2010 at 6:45pm
My friend who watched the "X" car race, said that after they got the motor straightened out, nobody else could touch it. Too bad they didn't run it a few more years, though Reffner did very well using their engine.
I love road racing/oval track racing AMC's and not much has ever been written up on these. I'll try and post something on my friend's ex IMSA AMX, which was probably the baddest AMX ever-clocked at 198 mph at 24 Hours of Daytona way back in 1980.
 
amxess
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote adelaida Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Feb/18/2010 at 4:17pm
wow! cickass pictures, man!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote SCCAJavelin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Feb/22/2010 at 3:47pm
Originally posted by amxess amxess wrote:

Why AMC used Traco I have no idea, as I've not read anything good about them from the drivers who raced AMC's. Those who were succesful always ended up building their own AMC engines.
 
Penske had a relationship with TRACO from their Chevy days--so when they went to AMC in 1970, they had TRACO build their motors.  AMC barely lost the T/A title to Ford in 1970 and beat everyone in 1971 and 72...that seems pretty successful to me.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Javelin_GT Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Feb/22/2010 at 4:00pm
John Martin from the  68/69 Javelin Racing Team told me they ended up building all of their own engines even though TRACO had done some early ones.

I know Penske used them in 70/71 TA and later NASCAR but I have no idea if Roy Woods did in 71/72 TA.

I also know Bobby Allison ended up building his own engines for NASCAR.




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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote GreggR Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Feb/22/2010 at 8:18pm
Hope I'm not stepping on toes, sinse I don't know who owns this site... but more "X" car photos and much more here:
 
 
Tons of vintage pix of racing ramblers...
Skating away on the thin ice of a new day.'75 Hornet Hatchback
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401Eric View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote 401Eric Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Dec/11/2010 at 3:53am
The link only goes to "Go Daddy".
Isn't there an "AmericanMotorsRacing.com" anymore? 
Regards, Eric
74 Hornet 401 "C.K.10"

74 Cop Matador 401 "Runner"

71 Javelin AMX 401 Go Pack "Sidewinder"

74 Bricklin 360 AMC powered "Presto"

85 Dodge crew cab tow truck Mopar 360 4bbl "Festus"
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