By Mary Lendzion
With a passion for powerful cars, Jeff Heintz began competing in the Chevrolet Performance Challenge Series at NMCA events several years ago.
At first, he was behind the wheel of his 2009 Cadillac CTS-V, and then he was behind the wheel of his wife Christy’s 2003 Corvette Z06, in the series’ LME Street King category, and in TorqStorm Superchargers True Street. He even arrived at the Aerospace Components Winner’s Circle a couple of times.
All the while, he had his eye on fellow competitor Kevin Lumsden’s 1999 Camaro, and he told him that if he ever wanted to sell it, he would buy it.
That ended up happening a few years ago, and ever since, Heintz has been hauling in the Chevrolet Performance Challenge Series and NMCA Chevrolet Performance Stock presented by Scoggin-Dickey Parts Center category in the car powered by a sealed DR525 engine backed by an RPM Transmissions Turbo 400 and rolling on 28X10.5 Mickey Thompson slicks.
Last year, he wrapped up a third place finish in Chevrolet Performance Challenge Series Chevrolet Performance Stock presented by Scoggin-Dickey Parts Center and a fourth place finish in NMCA Chevrolet Performance Stock presented by Scoggin-Dickey Parts Center.
“To be honest, I struggled last year as I was trying to get used to the set-up on the car and the category,” said Heintz, who has a lot of support in his racing from his wife, Christy. “These cars can be really sensitive if you don’t get the set-up just right, and if you hit the rev-limiter, you’re done. The learning curve is pretty big.”
Turning his focus to 2020 over winter, Heintz, scaled his car, had his shocks re-valved and swapped Coan converters at his shop, Heintz Racing in Moorseville, North Carolina, where late-model General Motors LS and LT vehicles are serviced and souped-up, including those belonging to several Chevrolet Performance Challenge Series and NMCA racers. He also re-wired his car using a Spaghetti Menders kit.
Then, he headed to the 18th Annual NMCA Muscle Car Mayhem presented by Holbrook Racing Engines in March at Bradenton Motorsports Park in Florida, where he qualified in the third spot with a 10.14 and then posted a 10.09, which was a personal best in that car, a 10.20 and a 10.18 on his way to his first win in the category. He also set the category’s top speed record with a 131.16 mph.
“It felt really good to win, and I actually got a little emotional,” said Heintz, whose car was going into wheelies all weekend long. “It takes a lot to run these cars, and it takes time away from family and work, so to be able to accomplish what we accomplished, and to have my dad, Larry, at that event, meant a lot to me.”
Holding down the lead in Chevrolet Performance Stock presented by Scoggin-Dickey Parts Center points, Heintz is heading to the 12th Annual Scoggin-Dickey Parts Center NMRA/NMCA All-Star Nationals presented by Holley, this Thursday through Sunday, June 25-28 at Atlanta Dragway.
“I like the door-to-door racing in this category, and I’m looking forward to racing at Atlanta Dragway this weekend,” said Heintz, who recently worked with Coan for a looser converter and is optimistic about its potential.