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The Day A Super Duty Pontiac Tempest Destroyed The World’s Best Sports Cars
Picture a Ferrari GTO, Stingray Corvette, Jag and Pontiac Super Duty Tempest at a starting line. Think you have a pretty good idea of how the race will go? Throw all of those pre-conceived notions out the window if it’s Paul Goldsmith behind the wheel of that Tempest. During the 250 mile Challenge Cup event at Daytona Speed Weeks 1963, Paul Goldsmith used his Pontiac weapon of choice to annihilate all competition and win the race by a landslide. Pretty impressive for a Tempest, huh? This car was fit with cast iron exhaust manifolds, making Goldsmith’s car pretty rare. Instead of the usual torque converter, the Tempest used a clutch to get the car moving. Before long Goldsmith secured the lead which opened wider and wider. Crossing the finish line, Goldsmith was 5 miles ahead of the second place finisher. Definitely a shining moment for Pontiac racing.
The rear mounted transaxle on the Tempest gave it perfectly neutral handling which helps to explain this unexpected result. Unfortunately, creative engineering appears never to have attracted much attention form Detroit brass.
John Kuhn Bleimaier