Cado Mills, Texas’ Kevin Lumsden has been a longtime supporter and racer in the Chevrolet Performance Challenge Series (CPCS) going back to 2012, and he’ll make his return to the series in the LME Street King category during the Challenge Series finals, which is run concurrently with the Nitrous Supply NMCA World Street Finals presented by Chevrolet Performance this weekend.
Lumsden started off in the Proform Rumble class, and later was the very first racer to debut a DR525 crate motor-powered car for the new-for-2015 Chevrolet Performance Stock (CPS) presented by Scoggin-Dickey Parts Center class. After campaigning his Camaro SS in the category for a few years, he caught the NMCA Factory Super Car bug, bought a COPO Camaro, and transitioned to that class over the past couple of years. But with a limited run schedule, Lumsden decided he wanted to be racing something, and opted to build this rather special 1969 Camaro to do it with.
The new Hugger Orange Camaro was part of a giveaway with the NMCA and the reproduction parts and chassis manufacturer, Real Deal Steel. The company provides the all-steel GM licensed ’69 Camaro bodies complete with exterior sheet metal from Auto Metal Direct and prep from All Bare Media Blasting.
For the giveaway vehicle, the project began with a Real Deal Steel 1969 Camaro body, which was fitted with a Chris Alston’s Chassisworks front subframe, Moser Engineering rearend, Mickey Thompson tires, Weld Racing wheels, and Wilwood Engineering brakes. Inside the Camaro, an ididit steering column was installed to make it a roller. The final piece of the puzzle was the drivetrain, and for that, a Chevrolet Performance Connect & Cruise 480HP LS3 crate engine and Magnum T56 6-speed transmission was supplied by Scoggin-Dickey Parts Center.
During the 2016 Chevrolet Performance Challenge Series awards, the winner of the giveaway was chosen from a group consisting of the top-ten points finishers in each of the Chevrolet Performance Challenge Series classes. Taylor Lumsden, Kevin’s son, won the car.
Taylor had been racing his father’s 4th-gen Pontiac Firehawk in the series, and after a bit of time passed, Kevin and Taylor worked out a trade—the Firehawk for the Camaro.
Kevin put a plan together, which included dropping the rolling chassis off to fellow CPCS racer Kurt Anderson’s AutoKraft Race Cars and Restorations in Eau Claire, Wisconsin, where it underwent a full-on renovation. Many of the parts that were on the car were swapped out for more drag-race-oriented components.
“AutoKraft did everything, the body, paint, wiring, interior,” Lumsden told us. “I originally was going to finish it, but after he [Anderson] started on it, I just said ‘heck yeah, finish it.’ The attention to detail he has is phenomenal.”
Inside is stock Camaro aside from the two racing bucket seats, a RacePak drag dash, and a 10-point roll cage. Where the Alston front end was more geared towards pro touring, Anderson bolted up a SpeedTech front subframe and complemented that with a ladder bar rear suspension setup for now.
The Chevrolet Performance stock LS3 powerplant was exchanged for a more potent LS3-based engine that made 546 horsepower to the tire in Lumsden’s 4Th-Gen Camaro SS. It’s backed by an RPM Transmissions Turbo 400 and the combo should push the First-Gen, F-body to 9-second elapsed times based on it’s previous performance at the World Cup race in Maryland where the car clocked a 9.47. The engine also features a FAST intake manifold, more compression, and a Holley Dominator EFI system tuned by Sam Miller that feeds it a healthy diet of VP Racing Fuels MS109.
Looking towards this weekend, Lumsden’s expectations are realistic given the timeline he’s working with.
“It’s kind of a last minute deal. I’ll probably be driving it and am going to try and run it in LME Street King. We haven’t tested it; we’re just really coming to see everybody and show the car off for Kurt. He did such a great job.”
As for where he’ll be racing the car in the future, there may be a class change for 2021.
“I’m actually thinking about Chevrolet Performance Stock,” Lumsden said. “I don’t know how much we’ll be running with the COPO and I want to be ready to run something. Once you run heads up, it’s hard to go back to index racing—I had a lot of fun in CPS.”