Bonneville Speed Week 2010 Baddest Race Cars #1

Bonneville Salt Flats Race Car

Bonneville Speed Week 2010, Bonneville hot rod, competition coupe, fiat topolino

What’s the baddest race car at Bonneville Speed Week 2010? If you asked 100 people, you might get 90 different answers. (Where does he come up with that crap?) Who cares what you think, it’s my website, so I’m posting what I think are the baddest rides on the salt. From there, lets discuss… this is an interactive magazine, not some glued together pile of pages sittin’ in your bathroom! Interact and leave a comment below.


First up: The Fiat Simca of George Fields of Newark, TX
Bonneville Speed Week Race Class: E/BFCC

Bonneville Speed Week 2010, Bonneville hot rod, competition coupe, fiat topolino


That long enough for you? I found out from Tom Burkland (more about him later) tuner and friend to George that the competition coupe rules allow for some slight modifications to the stock body… the SCTA rulebook states: “Production coupe or sedan body unaltered in width or contour.” But what they don’t say is, from the cowl back.  From the cowl forward, anything goes! The car can be as long as you like as long as the engine only has a 50% setback. Contrast this modern day racer to the origins of the class like the Chrisman Bonneville Coupe and the Pierson Brother Coupe. Those are both competition coupes, too.


Bonneville Speed Week 2010, Bonneville hot rod, competition coupe, fiat topolino


The class is E/BFCC which gives this nasty coupe a 184-260 cubic inch engine. George is running a 255″ Rodeck this year.  The B = BLOWN and the F = fuel which could be anything really, but is not the spec racing gasoline of the G category. I’m not sure what these guys were running, but I’ll try to find out.  With the zoomies and the thump it made, I wouldn’t be surprise to find some nitro mixed in!


300 club member George Fields, Bonneville Salt Flats


Here’s a closeup of George. Note the Blue hat that says “200 mph Club, Life Member”. While that’s true, George’s blue hat means he’s in a special club within the “Tw0-club” called the “Three-club” where you’ve broken a record at over 300mph.  An elite club no doubt since how many people have ever gone 300mph? George first hit the 200mph club at 231.285mph in  1990, then bumped that up and squeaked into the blue hat-ville at 300.509mph.


Bonneville Speed Week 2010, Bonneville hot rod, competition coupe, fiat topolino


Here’s the starting line at Bonneville Speed Week 2010. See that guy in the blue shirt and cowboy hat? That’s Tom Burkland.  Remember the 2 and 3 club? Tom’s a member of the 300mph club and could be a FOUR club member soon.  Tom currently holds the at FIA Cat. A, Group I, Class 11 flying mile International record at 415.896 MPH! (more info here) Think he knows what he’s talking about? If you ever get a chance to, say hi and you’ll learn Tom knows his land speed racing, but is super generous with his knowledge.


Tom comes from a family of Burkland land speed racing records. Tom’s father Gene (two-club at 255mph) recently passed away but is still celebrated by his son and wife Betty Burkland. Betty’s a 200mph club member too and know what’s the coolest thing? She is the current record holder in the E/BFCC category this car races in at 263.887mph. Look for a story on Betty and other women of the 200mph club soon from GreaseGirl.


Bonneville Speed Week 2010, Bonneville hot rod, competition coupe, fiat topolino


One last look at this super bad race car! This is also a good look at the painted on front wheels and spun aluminum discs. Tom told me covering the front wheels is aerodynamically essential to running fast. The wheel covers in the back help too, but they come off at speed like a murderous pizza pan! Tom explained that the aluminum expands until it rips the fasteners out so they need some steel covers. Damn that’s fast!


Coming up for other baddest race cars: A pair from George Poteet: Speed Demon and Blowfish. From there, another Tom Burkland assisted race car, an air slicing competition coupe made from a 1960’s Saab 96. It’s nasty!


So what’s your pick for baddest race car at Bonneville Speed Week 2010? Agree with me? I’d sure like to know.


Here’s the pick for Baddest Bonneville Race Car #2 a 200mph Flathead Streamliner.


For more Bonneville Speed Week Records, Pictures and Coverage click this link.

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