Future of Racing is on Track at TCC

The “Hot Rodders of Tomorrow Engine Challenge” Division 4 Championship held Saturday, March 26 at the TCC South Campus Automotive Building in Fort Worth was a thrilling reminder of how hard work and achievement are still valued commodities among the young guns.
Ten high school teams from Texas and Oklahoma competed Saturday, and the atmosphere was charged, as a large crowd of friends and family cheered on their teams. Students had to properly disassemble the small-block Chevrolet engine down to just crank, cam, and block using hand tools. After receiving approval from the judges, teams began working to reassemble the engine using aftermarket parts, all while being viewed by judges and spectators. Time added penalties were assessed for dropped components, improper disassembly/assembly, even poor sportsmanship. Saturday’s top teams will qualify for the National Dual Championship held at the Specialty Equipment Market Association Show in November and the Performance Racing Industry Show in December.
The event itself resembles the tear down between rounds at a drag race, according to the event website. The engines are identically prepared small block Chevys complete with all the goodies, Edelbrock air cleaners – carbs – aluminum manifolds – heads – water pumps and valve covers, MSD distributors – wires, K&N oil filters, Hedman ceramic headers, TD timing chain covers, Moroso oil pans, ARP head bolts, Fel-Pro/Speed Pro gaskets and components, Melling oil pumps and Royal Purple lubricants.
The teams featured invited auto technology classes from local high schools. Each team consists of five students and the instructor/coach. The individual schools set standards and guidelines for involvement. Grades, attendance and skill are all part of the make of a team. Through this event these students get an opportunity to showcase their talents and knowledge gained during classroom session and workshops. It provides opportunities for students to develop and build teamwork, demonstrate their skills, enthusiasm, and build their confidence and commitment to excellence.
The Hot Rodders of Tomorrow Engine Challenge started in 2008 with five high school teams at one event in St. Charles, Illinois. Since then, it has expanded to include 110 teams, 770 students and 10 qualifying events around the country.