Hot Rod Magazine featured “Big John” Mazmanian’s beautiful candy-apple red, drag racing Corvette on their March 1963 cover and called it the “Double-Threat ‘Vette” referring to how it was equally capable at being a racer and show car. Once you seen this car, you’ll know they hit the nail right on the head!
John Mazmanian began his “Corvette” adventure” when “Dyno Don” Nicholson, who ran the dynamometer at C.S Mead Chevrolet in Pasadena, California, told him about a 1961 “fuelie” Corvette” that dyno’ed better than all the other cars on the lot. John wasted no time in purchasing it and he raced it occasionally. But when he found out his nephew, Rich Siroonian, was borrowing it to race on the streets of Los Angeles County, John decided that he and Rich would take it racing, but this time, legally.
The first year out, they won the 1961 NHRA Winternationals in A-Sports (A/SP) turning 109.96 mph with the fuel injected 283 small block. Over the summer they replaced the fuel injection with a GMC 4-71 blower and Hilborn two-port injector and won the C-Modified Sports (CM/SP) title at the 1962 Winternationals with a speed of 113 mph. They also took home the 3rd place trophy at the Winternationals Car Show.
Then they got serious and installed the “Bones” Balogh 327” small-block opened up to 338” and equipped with a GMC 6-71 blower, Hilborn four-port injector, Isky cam, Jardine headers and B&M Hydro. This bumped them to B-Modified Sports (BM/SP) and by March of ‘ 63 were turning 130 mph and 10.90 seconds e.t. with “Bones” doing the driving.
“Big John” sold the ‘Vette in late 1963 and built the car he is most famous for: the ‘41 Willys Gasser that was one of the “Big Four” of the “Gasser Wars” era of drag racing. But the candy-red ‘Vette will always be remembered as one of the prettiest cars to ever run the quarter-mile.
“Big John” Mazmanian
1961 B&C M/SP Corvette
“The Double-Threat ‘Vette”
Release date: 2007
Manufacture: Precision Miniatures
History Content taken from Box Art!