00:08:16 - 07/04/2022
Subject: RE: When was the Dakota R/T born?|
In a way, Petty made the 340 famous. Everyone rulled the Dodges out when they outlawed the Hemi. Richard came right back. In fact, I know a little about the engineering history of Richard Petty Enterprises. Of course, back then it was STP. Richard was one of the first racers to have his own engineering staff. They designed and developed the first swirl port heads. It was why Richard was able to effortlessly pull away from everybody else. Back then NASCAR checked exhaust temperatures as a way of controling compression ratios. For the most part, no one could run higher than 13-14:1 without exceeding the max-exhaust temp. If they did go higher than that they had to run an excessively rich fuel mixture to keep the exhaust temps down. Richard's swirl port head's allowed him to run higher compression ratios than everybody else without increasing the exhaust temperature. This allowed him to run leaner fuel mixtures than everyone else. So, he was making more HP and getting better fuel mileage. Everyone thought he was just a better driver. He was the smartest driver.
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