OUSCI Preview- Dan Howe's 1984 Chevrolet Monte Carlo SS
Like many of our Spirit of the Event invitees to the 2012 OPTIMA Ultimate Street Car Invitational, presented by Royal Purple and KN, Dan Howe was shocked to hear his name called. Dan and his son, Josh, headed out to Arnold, Nebraska, looking to have the time of their lives in the Sandhills Open Road Challenge, never thinking participation in that event would lead to an invite to SEMA and participation in the 2012 OUSCI.
The Howes finished eighth in their class of 12 and 90th overall, but the selection committee was really impressed with their enthusiasm and extended an invite to SEMA and the 2012 OUSCI. With no thought of the OUSCI prior to the Sandhills, the Howes have since made an effort to get ready for the competition in Pahrump. Dan has participated in several autocrosses over the past few months and is scheduled to attend an autocross school on September 29th, which he hopes will make him more competitive, but Spring Mountain will likely be his first trip to a road course.
Howe has participated in Speed/Stop competitions already, which is definitely an advantage many others have lacked heading into Spring Mountain and should serve him well. His Monte Carlo has also been completed for quite some time, giving him an advantage over other competitors, who are still assembling their cars and don't have the same benefit of advance knowledge that they will be competing in the OUSCI. The Monte Carlo's road worthiness gives Dan the confidence that that he will be able to successfully complete whatever challenges lay ahead during the Detroit Speed Engineering/JRI Shocks Road Rally and score points in that event. That leads us to the Monte Carlo itself.
What has Dan done to this car? The LS1/4L60E jumps out immediately, but the work on this car didn't begin and end with a mere 500-horsepower engine and transmission swap. Dan's Monte now rides on a state-of-the-art Schwartz Performance Chassis and enjoys a much more-balanced weight distribution of 56% up front and 44% rear. Total weight of Dan's G-Body is just over 3,400 pounds with a full tank of fuel and while he didn't make a 1/4-mile pass at Holley's LS Fest, that event did allow him to shake the car down and realize the rear end needed attention prior to the OUSCI.
Dan knows the learning curve is steep, but he is excited about the opportunity to send his car to SEMA and compete in the 2012 OUSCI and he'll be more prepared next month, than he is this month. If you'd like to see Dan's Monte in action, check out this video: