Pre-SEMA 2011 OPTIMA Invitational Field Announced

Ultimate Streetcar
OPTIMA Batteries
Las Vegas, NV

On the heels of the final OPTIMA Ultimate Street Car Invitational qualifying event of the season, the Lingenfelter Performance Engineering Nationals, OPTIMA Batteries today announced the final round of 2012 OPTIMA Ultimate Street Car Invitational participants prior to this year’s SEMA Show.

The second round of participants who have earned a spot to compete in this year’s OPTIMA Invitational, presented by K&N Filters and Royal Purple Synthetic Oil are:

  • · Blue Offutt (1993 Mazda RX-7)
  • · Mark Bowler (1970 Ford Torino)
  • · Jessie Vaughn (1997 Nissan 240SX)
  • · John Buttermore (2012 Chevrolet Sonic)
  • · Curt Hill (1972 Chevrolet C5 Blazer)
  • · Bob Bertelsen (1970 Chevrolet Camaro)
  • · Steven Rupp (1968 Chevrolet Camaro)
  • · Zeke Peterson (2002 Volkswagen Bug)
  • · Brad Coomer (1970 Chevrolet C10 Pickup)
  • · Curt Ukasic (1965 Ford Mustang)
  • · Dennis McCarthy (2012 Lucra LC470)
  • · Mark Stielow (1967 Chevrolet Camaro)
  • · Mark Capener (2011 Lamborghini Gallardo pictured)

Additionally, the 2011 OUSCI champion, Danny Popp will return in a 2010 Chevrolet Camaro, to defend his title. During the Lingenfelter Performance Engineering Nationals, Mark Bowler experienced a small transmission line fire in his 1970 Ford Torino. Luckily he was able to make the necessary repairs to keep the vehicle in the competition, and ultimately walk away with the “Spirit of the Event” award from that event, solidifying his spot in this year’s OPTIMA Invitational.

Over the years Bowler has been an integral part of the OPTIMA Invitational participating as a sponsor and providing customer vehicles for the event. Additionally, Bowler and the team at Bowler Performance Transmissions have taken it upon themselves to promote the industry by producing events such as the Days at the Strip and Midwest Muscle Car Challenge.

“We have seen a lot of great talent this year, and participants who truly embody the spirit of our sport. We are fortunate to be surrounded by such a great community of enthusiasts,” said Cam Douglass Director of Marketing for OPTIMA Batteries. “That is why I encourage everyone to watch the series TV Shows on the OPTIMA Network on Roku and to come join us at this year’s OPTIMA Invitational.”

Blue Offutt and his 1993 Mazda RX-7 earned OPTIMA’s “Spirit of the Event” award at the Silver State Classic Challenge earlier this month. Offutt has inspired and educated hundreds of enthusiasts over the years through his work at the Silver State rookie school and orientation classes. He was also a participant in the OPTIMA Faceoff at the Sandhills Open Road Challenge earlier this year.

OPTIMA’s Search for America’s Ultimate Street Car Miniseries

New this year, OPTIMA is introducing a television miniseries of its events titled, OPTIMA’s Search for America’s Ultimate Street Car. The series will premiere Sunday, September 30, 2012 at 1PM ET on the SPEED channel and be available for viewing afterwards on the OPTIMA Network on Roku. The first episode will feature the OPTIMA Faceoff at the HOT ROD Power Tour event in Arlington, Texas where participants battled through the heat to compete in a number of high-performance challenges.

As part of this and future episodes, viewers will see interviews and exciting on-track coverage as participants prove their vehicle’s street cred in the Detroit Speed and Engineering/JRI Shocks Road Rally, weave through the twisting cone course of the Ridetech Street Challenge Autocross, come screeching to a halt in the Wilwood Disc Brakes Speed Stop Challenge, burn rubber as they compete in the BFGoodrich Hot Lap Challenge and ultimately show off their vehicle’s craftsmanship in the Lingenfelter Performance Engineering Performance Design Challenge.

Sponsors of the 2012 OPTIMA Ultimate Street Car Invitational include presenting sponsors Royal Purple and K&N Filters; event sponsors: BFGoodrich, RideTech, Wilwood Disc Brakes, Lingenfelter Performance Engineering, Detroit Speed and Engineering/JRI Shocks; and associate sponsors: MagnaFlow, Roadster Shop, Centerforce Clutches and Mothers Polishes Waxes Cleaners, Inc. – the official car care sponsor.

For more information on the OPTIMA Ultimate Street Car Invitational and the qualifying series, please visit