Corey Perin, a BMW master technician from Hendrick Automotive Group’s East Bay BMW/East Bay MINI dealership in California, and Kevin Moler, a machinist at Hendrick Motorsports, defeated 11 other teams to win the 11th annual Randy Dorton Hendrick Engine Builder Showdown.
“I wouldn’t even look at the clock until I hit that start button,” said the 37-year-old Perin. “I saw our time and thought, ‘As long as this starts running, we’re good. This is bragging rights amongst my Hendrick technician peers. Next year, I’ll be back as a teardown tech, but I’d love to see another tech from East Bay BMW or MINI in it next year and taking home the trophy again.”
Moler, 40, has worked at Hendrick Motorsports since 2001 and has competed in the last five Randy Dorton Hendrick Engine Builder Showdown competitions.
“This is such a great event,” Moler said. “I’ve been coming here for years to watch. I know the guys at Hendrick Motorsports and Hendrick Automotive Group look forward to this every year. I’ll come back and participate in this every chance I get.
“I never looked at our competitors or the clock, but I knew we were ahead of them. I kept listening for their oil pan. Once we moved to the top side of the engine, we were very deliberate to make sure everything was tight. The one-minute penalties are what can get you. But we knew we were ahead so we were very careful about that.”
Perin and Moler bested their championship-round competitors Lee J. Cook of Rick Hendrick Chevrolet in Charleston, S.C., and Brian Franklin, an engine tuner at Hendrick Motorsports, by a little more than one minute. Both teams went error-free throughout the final round.
Started in 2002, the Randy Dorton Hendrick Engine Builder Showdown pairs 12 Hendrick Automotive Group master technicians, with 12 Hendrick Motorsports technicians, in a two-day competition to construct Chevrolet R07.2 engines. The overall goal of the competition is to have the fewest errors in the shortest amount of time. The teams are set in a bracket-style format, and the two teams with the best times go head-to-head in the final round at Hendrick Motorsports.
This was the first year the assembled engines included fuel-injection systems, slowing down the builds slightly from last year’s winning time of 21 minutes and 30 seconds.
Twelve Hendrick Automotive Group master technicians and 12 Hendrick Motorsports engine technicians will again be chosen in 2013 to compete in the Randy Dorton Hendrick Engine Builder Showdown, scheduled for October.