The 3rd Annual Florida Sunshine Statesman GMC Drag Race from Orlando, Fla., is now live on the “RV Buddies” website.
Eastern correspondent and friend of the program Jim Bounds, owner of Cooperative Motor Works hosts this “RV Buddies” Online special event showcasing the historic GMC motorhome, according to a news release promoting the online program.
Born of automotive heritage, the GMC boasts a 403 or 455 front-wheel-drive drive train — revolutionary for its time. These cult classics can still be seen throughout the United States and Canada.
There are a number of shops specializing in the restoration, and in some cases “severe modification” of these classic coaches. “RV Buddies” is currently involved in a massive GMC project. Bounds is known for his extreme projects, which include dramatic styling changes, high-end audio and video systems and performance from turbos, new engines and diesel transformations.
Some GMC owners drove thousands of miles to attend the event. The camaraderie, along with the pride of ownership makes this one of the closest-knit communities within an already close RV world.
There are over 20 clubs nationwide under the Family Motor Coach Association (FMCA) umbrella dedicated to these GMC aficionados alone.
There was a lot of fun at the event. Besides the GMC RVs, motorcycles, trucks and cars ran down the drag strip. Initially, the audience was a bit taken back by the site of the motorhomes. The video shows some traditional “trash-talking” as spectators and contestants alike brag, boast and predict all possible outcomes. Strategies included whether to empty the holding tank or not for better traction on the track. One racer pondered turning the TV on during his run for entertainment.
Action in the pits was ever-present. GMC owners and experts helped each other out with maintenance and upgrade issues. Fire Fight, a provider of fire suppression systems, was on hand to educate the GMC owners on the value of these life-saving devices.
There is nothing as American as an RV. And RVers love NASCAR and drag races. So the idea that the front-wheel drive of an RV can burn rubber down a drag strip has to be a dream-come-true.
The winner of the event who set a new record (22.514 seconds at 62 mph), was Bob Heller, driving #9587, a 1974 GMC running a 455 big-block engine with 110,000 original miles. Heller does all his own work and maintenance.
Many more events are planned for the future; and all who participated vow to continue to set new speed records.
Cooperative Motor Works is an association of automotive artisans and GMC owners dedicated to the preservation, renovation, restoration and yes recycling of the classic front wheel drive GMC Motorhome built by General Motors from 1973-1978. Contact Bounds at [email protected] or call (877) 275-4462.