“Steel-town” is home base to one of the most talked about new Canadian circuit cars for 2020….

Hamilton’s Mike Valvasori capped off a three-year personal project this season when he put the finishing touches on a very creative car which quickly had a ripple effect within Canada’s Fast Street car scene.

Mike, who is a contractor and owner of a very successful  company which builds high end homes and condos within Ontario’s GTA — is using some of the proceeds of that 35-year career diligence — to now reward himself.

A long time drag racing affectionado, Valvasori hit local drag strips hard and rather often this season with a pride and joy ’68 model Dodge Charger — an Outlaw car — that is oozing with uniqueness. 

“I first saw this car (on-line) three years ago — but it took a while to make the deal with it’s previous owner,” Mike explained.  “It was based in the San Francisco area — it was a high-school car which the original owner had built up for fast ET car racing.  In fact he was a multi-time divisional champ with it in what they called ET Class 1.  I had the car shipped up to Canada in 2016.”

Mike Valvasori’s one of a kind ’68 Dodge Charger sent ripples through Canada’s Fast Street Car racing community this season.

Since that time Mike took his time while morphing, testing and developing the machine into its current configuration.   

Mike bolts off the starting line at Cayuga Dragway (TMP) last summer.

“In our first year out it was naturally aspirated and ran in the mid 9’s,” he continued.  “In year two we tried 2-stages of nitrous but that caused some damage and the car proved to be inconsistent.  So last year (2019) we made the decision to evolve into a Pro-Charger program.  We aligned with Ed Wiens (Niagara-On-The-Lake) for both the engine and final car build — and that proved to be the correct transition.  Simply put — Ed does top quality work and I’m able to take advantage of Ed’s deep experience and past accomplishments.”

Valvasori also credits Ed Garth (Weber Chassis), Sergio Palmari, George Sardelli and his brother Paul with involvement in his build.

The engine program is now a 572 CID Mopar (Indy block and heads) and with the Pro-Charger gives Mike some very serious HP to play with on race days.   By season’s end this 3000 lbs race car, which is run exclusively within 1/8th mile racing, was credited with runs in the mid 4.50 secs zone nearing 160 mph during appearances within Ontario Street Outlaws and Canada Heads Up circuits.

The Charger’s engine program is a 572 CID Mopar/Indy configuration that uses Pro-Charger power additive tech.

Mike’s Dodge Charger is not his first Mopar — but it is his favourite so far.

“I previously raced a ’66 Coronet (called “Gold Rush”) in ET brackets and before that had a 440 CID Street/Strip ’73 Cuda,” he revealed.  “I had always liked and wanted a ’68 Charger — I think that notion goes way back to watching movies like “Bullet” and the “Fast & Furious”.  So when fate made this car available – I jumped on it.”

Mike’s first full year racing the Charger was by all measurements a very effective one and holds well for the future.  Not only did it run really hard —  the car became an instant fan favourite at each and every race he attended.

“In 2020 we really were just at the beginning stages with it,” he added.  “We came into the season after making a lot changes and we learned a lot.  We tamped down the power to start with – using only the first set of gears in our Pro-Charger.  We have two more sets to go to increase that power — so there is a lot of upside to come performance wise.”

Mike’s plans for 2021 will see the car continue refinements while being entered frequently within Ontario’s very thriving fast street car racing scene.

Post and photos by Bruce Biegler