Participants Battle It Out In The Optima Faceoff Challenge


Herb Stuart's '67 Cougar getting sideways. Image: Optima Batteries

June, 22, 2012 was an interesting day at Road America in Elkhart, Wisconsin. Thirty-eight participants gathered at this year’s Optima Faceoff Challenge, presented by Royal Purple, to battle it out to see who would become the finalists for the 2012 Optima Ultimate Street Car Invitational. The festivities kicked-off in a laid-back manner on Friday with a car show and the Optima Build-A-Bike charitable event that benefits children from the Milwaukee area Boys & Girls Club and YMCA.

One of the few imports at the event, a 2003 BMW M3 belonging to Matt Jamojedny, took home the "Spirit of the Event" award.

Things got a little more interesting the following day, however, with participants voting for their favorite car in the Lingenfelter Performance Design Challenge followed by a 60-mile jaunt through Wisconsin’s Kettle Moraine State Park to the Detroit Speed/JRI Shocks Road Rally at Road America. Upon arrival, show-goers had an opportunity to watch professional drivers test the track during the NASCAR Nationwide race.

Wrapping up the the show on Sunday consisted of participants challenging their skills during the BFGoodrich Hot Lap Challenge, which was dominated by Danny Popp and his 2010 Lingenfelter-tuned Camaro SS. Taking home the Wilwood Disc Brakes Speed Stop Challenge trophy and representing one of the few imports in attendance was Darren Draves with his 2005 Porsche Carrera GT. A first-year Camaro was represented well with Britt Marlof coming in 1st place with his ’67 in the Ridetech Street Challenge Autocross.

Winning the coveted “Spirit of the Event” award and an invite to the Optima Invitational was Pedro Gonzales, 1979 Trans Am; Herb Stuart, 1967 Cougar; Brian Davis, 1999 Trans Am, and Matt Jamojedny with a 2003 BMW M3, putting the myth to bed that this is an all-American car event. Below we’ve attached the results of the event by category so you can see how they break down. We’ll keep you updated on the results of the Invitational at a later date.

Trans Am's of the 2nd and 4th generations were represented by Pedro Gonzales ('79), and Brian Davis ('99), respectively.

Lingenfelter Performance Engineering Design Challenge
3.  #50 Bret Voelkel                                        1933 Ford Roadster
2. #11 Chris Jacobs                                        1966 Chevelle
1. #29 Randy Johnson                                    1970 Camaro
Wilwood Disc Brakes Speed Stop Challenge
3.  #36 Tom Farrington                                   20.502 – 1966 Chevelle
2. #53 Danny Popp                                         20.453 – 2010 LPE Camaro
1. #43 Darren Draves                                     20.394 – 2005 Porsche Carrera GT
Ridetech Street Challenge Autocross
3.  #50 Bret Voelkel                                        41.585 – 1933 Ford Roadster
2. #53 Danny Popp                                         40.557 – 2010 LPE Camaro
1. #51 Britt Marolf                                           40.310 – 1967 Camaro
BFGoodrich Hot Lap Challenge
3. #51 Brit Marolf                                            1:44.336 – 1967 Camaro
2. #43 Darren Draves                                     1:39.977 – 2005 Porsche Carrera GT
1. #53 Danny Popp                                         1:39.412 – 2010 LPE Camaro
OPTIMA Batteries Faceoff at HOT ROD Power Tour Overall
3. #43 Darren Draves                                     2005 Porsche Carrera GT
2. #51 Britt Marolf                                           1967 Camaro
1. #53 Danny Popp                                         2010 LPE Camaro


About the author

Rick Seitz

Being into cars at a very early age, Rick has always preferred GM performance cars, and today's LS series engines just sealed the deal. When he's not busy running errands around town in his CTS-V, you can find him in the garage wrenching on his WS6 Trans Am, or at the local cruise spots in his Grand National.
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