I Sold my HQ to buy her a Race Car

Here I was minding my own business, enjoying watching the drag racing when I had the time. No pressure, no stress, just going at my own pace.

Then Andy (my wife) introduces me to the husband of a friend who is drag racing a still street registered Ford XA in Super Street down at Kwinana Motorplex. So curiosity gets the better of me and I head on down next meet to see how he’s doing. Next thing I know I’ve got my head under the bonnet and I’m working on a Ford.

Well that was back in 2005. By 2008 I’m fully entrenched in the team known as Fatboyz Racing. Even though I had my own project at home (rebuilding a HQ well body ute), I end up spending every weekend in my mate’s shed helping to turn this pretty quick, nitrous assisted street XA into a dedicated Super Sedan. You see we’d received the tap on the shoulder that the XA was a little bit too quick for Super Street and some major modifications had to be made. So that’s where my skills as a Fitter Machinist, and my now intimate knowledge of this particular XA came in very handy.

So I continued to split my time between rebuilding my HQ and keeping the XA in racing condition. It’s just as well I didn’t have any other hobbies, or I’d have run out of time entirely.

But all good things come to an end, and it was getting too difficult for the Fatboyz crew to combine work and racing. So I thought I was looking at some serious HQ rebuild time. But who knew I had a wife who wanted to be strapped into the driver’s seat of a drag car? She caught me at a weak moment, and I agreed we should buy a car.

We buy Brenton Baxter’s old LC Torana from Simon ‘Gonzo’ Travaglini but because I don’t have a shed at home, Simon allocates a bay in his workshop and I moved my toolbox in to start the modifications. I’ve been used to carby cars, but this thing is mechanical fuel injection and running methanol. It’s a whole new ball game. So feeling like I’m back at school, Gonzo sets about teaching me everything he can about how this car runs, how to work it, how to maintain it. At the same time, I’m fabricating new peddle extensions and new levers because my wife is so much smaller than the previous driver.

In the moments in between, I also got to pop over to the next bay in the workshop and help out and learn about this full steel bodied, no clutch, doorslammer that Gonzo and Brenton were building.
So now, 9 years later, I’m still melting the rubber off the bottom of my shoes, on the hot Kwinana Motorplex track. I’m currently crew chief to Andy (my wife) and the Torana, with Brenton and Gonzo in the next bays sharing ideas, problems, crew, tools, stories and a few drinks at the end of the night.

And whatever happened to my HQ ute? I sold it to buy the Torana.