Mickey Thompson M/T

Attempt I

Attempt I


  Since the Attempt was built is has used many different engines. One of the most popular was his Tempest 4-cylinder engines, these engines were half of the old 389 Pontiac engine cut down the middle to make a slant 4-cylinder they were used it the early '60 Pontiac Tempest. Mickey had a 180 cubic inch which was a destroked Pontiac 4-cyl and was blown by a 4-71 "Jimmie". Using a 26 pound inlet bust and 25 % nitro fuel mix it set a standing mile record of 230 mph. Increasing the Nitro mix to 50%, the car run 163 mph in the quarter mile with an ET of 9.50 second.

  In 1962 at March Air Force Base M/T set out to break the International FIA Class D record and the USAC Class B Closed Car categories (305-488 cubic inches) for the Standing and Flying Kilometer and Mile.

The Class D record Mickey Thompson had been trying to break for the last two years. M/T would use his tiny streamlined Attempt I record car which for 1962 M/T removed the 180 cubic inch 4 cylinder and replaced it with a destroked Pontiac V8 engine of 180 cubic inches with a front-mounted 4-71 GMC supercharger and fuel injection, putting out over 500 horsepower.

 During his first attempt the supercharger ducting blew out through the body just before it reached the end of the first kilo. M/T and his crew went to work disassemble the body, blower and fuel injection unit. An opening was cut in the body to accommodate a spare engine-mounted 4-71 blower.

  With the work underway on repairing and modifying the Attempt I Mickey decided to get the Pontiac sedan going on the National Standing Kilo and Mile stock car records. See Pontiac Catalina for information on his attempt at USAC Class B record.

 After hours of frantic effort by the record-seeking crew, the little "Attempt I" record car was wheeled to the start of the measured kilo for the attempt at the 23-year-old record. With a burst of power the streamliner went through the kilometer to easily break the "down leg" of the record. Only the return run remained to be made within the hour.

 But this was where M/T had failed before. After a quick pit stop at the far end, the car was ready for its all-out return.

  Suspense? You Bet! And for good reason, for within 500 feet of the end of the kilo mark the rear wheels locked up, the car veered violently and the chute was popped in the final 200 feet. But break the record he did, chute and all, with a two-way average for the Standing Kilo of 112.088 mph breaking the old International record mark.

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2000 to 3000 cc (122-183 cubic inches)


Old Record - 110.2 mph

New record - 112.088 mph

Driver - R. Caracciola

Driver - Mickey Thompson

Date - 19 31

Date - 1962

Car - Mercedes on Autobahn

Car - Attempt I (180 cu. in. Pontiac)


2000 to 3000 cc. (122 to 183 Cu. In.)

Standing Start






 1 K


March AFB, Calif.

Attempt (Pontiac) 


 Source : Oct. Hot Rod Copyright © 1962





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