Since 2012 SAM Tech has been campaigning our naturally aspirated COPO Camaro in the NHRA Lucas Oil series. Racing out of NHRA Division 4 the SAM Tech owned COPO has found success winning class four times, setting a national record running an 8.90@150 in the FS/X Class, and qualifying number 1 at various races across the country. Additionally, the team has won the LSX Challenge series COPO Class at Holley LS Fest and won a late model Camaro class at the NMCA race in Atlanta. The SAM Tech COPO has strict rules that it must follow in order to run in Stock Eliminator including limits to the size of the engine, size of tires, type of transmission, and the car must weigh 3470 pounds in its current configuration. Look for the SAM Tech COPO at NHRA races across the southern United States.
Coming out of retirement in the last couple of years, the SAM Tech SN95 Mustang has been used to as a teaching aid. The Block and Head Program students started by building a 302 cubic inch Pro Charged Coyote 5.0. After testing it on the engine dyno where it made 1158 horsepower at 7800 RPM and 806 torque at 7300 RPM, it was decided to put the engine in the school’s SN95 Mustang. While the Pro Charged 5.0 SN95 hasn’t been down the track, the EFI Program has been working with it on the chassis dyno. We took it to Power Nation for an episode of Engine Power where the car made 946 horsepower. In the cars current configuration it makes 10:1 compression, it has our cylinder head program in it, F1A Pro Charger, and is currently running VP Q16 Race fuel.
This 1957 Chevy Bel Air, had been sitting in the SAM Tech parking lot across the street from the main campus for 10 years. The SAM Tech ’57 Chevy Build Team worked for 2 months to build a resto-mod ’57 Chevy Bel Air for the 2015 Hot Rod Power Tour. With a strong team and not a lot of time, the car was completely transformed. This year’s Hot Rod Power Tour started in Wisconsin and concluded in Louisiana, this made the trip right around 3000 miles before returning to Houston. The team consisted of SAM students Matt Petz from California, Mike Wilson from Virginia, John Gwinn from Michigan and Oscar Zabeck from New Jersey. Of course since SAM is all about engines, this hot rod is powered by an LS-3 with LS-7 small bore heads on it from Texas Speed with a Comp Cams hydraulic roller. The engine is fuel injected with twin throttle bodies on a manifold designed and machined by the SAM CNC department with a Holley system that runs the EFI and an MSD ignition. It makes 510 horsepower on the chassis dyno! The students updated the chassis with tubular A frames, road race shocks and springs. SPC Rods & Classics powder coated the chassis and the rear end. The four students decided to go with primer and flames, sprayed by Tasco Auto Color in gray primer and black. The car completed the entire trip with only 50 miles of driving before leaving for the Hot Rod Power Tour. Hard work and attention to detail by the students paid off in making this one of the more recognizable cars from the Hot Rod Power Tour after it was featured in Hot Rod Magazine and on TheBlock.com, and PowerNation TV.
NHRA Super Stock class racing is very competitive, and you need a solid engine program if you want to win at any level. Louisiana native Brandon Bakies has won multiple NHRA national events behind the wheel of his Super Stock COPO Camaro with horsepower from the students and staff at SAM Tech. Since 2014, Brandon has relied on SAM Tech to build the engines for his 2013 427 COPO Super Stocker and his 1972 455 Oldsmobile Stocker and now his 2013 Stocker. “The students and Instructors at SAM Tech have been a tremendous help with engine building, tuning, calibration, and at track support,” said Bakies. He continued, “I grew up around racing and thought that I knew a bit about engines and how they make power, but once I started spending time with the SAM Tech students and instructors I was amazed at how much I was learning and how much more I still have to learn.” NHRA Super Stock class racing is very competitive, and you need a solid engine program if you want to win at any level. Louisiana native Brandon Bakies has won multiple NHRA national events behind the wheel of his Super Stock COPO Camaro with horsepower from the students and staff at SAM Tech. Bakies most recent win was at the Texas NHRA FallNationals in a thrilling heads-up showdown against the Paterson Elite powered COPO piloted by Aydan Paterson. In addition to his national event win, Bakies won the NHRA division race at the Motorplex earlier in 2022. Additionally, students help Bakies at tracks across the nation serving as crew. Bakies has been a part of Team SAM Tech since 2014, in that time he has found success in multiple classes finishing the 2019 season as number 5 in the world in Super Stock.