The first round of the 2008 MAHLE Engine Builder Showdown is more than two months away, but already multiple NASCAR engine builder teams have signed up to compete in this exciting contest to see who can successfully build and run a Chevy RO7 engine in the shortest time possible.
The Showdown, a tiered four-round competition, begins on May 5. This is the ninth year of the annual MAHLE competition for NASCAR engine builders. Bill McKnight, Team Leader – Training for MAHLE Clevite, says, “Fourteen teams have already thrown their hats into the ring and are ready to compete. Compared to this point in time in previous years, this is the largest number of NASCAR engine builder teams having signed up for the Showdown, and there’s still plenty of time for more teams to enter the contest. In 2007, a record breaking 19 teams participated in the Showdown. We expect to see that record surpassed this year.”
Among the NASCAR engine builder teams signed up to date for the Showdown include:
- Bill Davis Racing: Robert Scott and Matt Flogel
- Ganassi Racing: Mike Lanci and Jesse Hardee; Brad Thrower and Todd Hamm
- Joe Gibbs Racing: Doug Easton and Gregg Wilson
- Hendrick Motorsports: Mike Maiwald and Shane Parsnow; Earl Wheeler and Danny Emerick; Kevin Webber and Scott Vester
- ProMotor Engineering: Dennis Borem and Darrell Hoffman
- Roush Yates Engines: Mike Kasch and Jim Snyder; Kent Mashburn and David Hamm; Trey Davis and Brian Buttrick; Mike Robinson and Andy Spicer; Mark Dorr and Chris Davala
- Toyota Racing Development: Mike DiMascio and Ben Morris
McKnight says the MAHLE Engine Builder Showdown is a national showcase for the talent, expertise and competitive spirit of engine builders who are at the top of their game in building race engines for NASCAR Sprint Cup, Nationwide Series and Craftsman Truck series races. Last year, Powerblock’s Horsepower TV presented a special half-hour program on the eighth annual Showdown. The program aired four times on cable television’s Spike TV network.
This year’s Showdown will be more exciting to watch than ever because for the first time in nine years the teams will be tackling a completely different race engine. Instead of NASCAR Sprint Cup 357-cubic-inch Ford engines, they’ll be building Chevy RO7 engines. “Most of the teams competing this year have never built a Chevy RO7 engine before, so this year’s contest will be especially challenging for them,” says McKnight.
The MAHLE Engine Builder Showdown consists of three rounds of preliminary and semi-final eliminations. The final round features the two fastest teams in a face-off to win the Showdown’s grand prize the prestigious Randy Dorton Memorial Trophy, plus a cash prize of $26,000. The Showdown runners-up team receives $9,000. Overall, the competition awards a total prize package of over $50,000.
MAHLE Clevite is holding all preliminary rounds of the MAHLE Engine Builder Showdown at the NASCAR Technical Institute, Mooresville, NC. The final round of the competition takes place on May 20, also at NTI.
The Internet address for MAHLE Clevite is www.mahleclevite.com.