The chance to try something new has always caught Mick Snyder’s attention. For 2018, that means driving a new car. Snyder, who has been a champion in Alcohol Funny Car, Pro Extreme and Top Sportsman, will debut a new-to-him Evolution Race Development ‘68 Camaro for the upcoming Top Sportsman season. After excelling in the orange ’63 Corvette still owned by Jason Scruggs for the past eight years, Snyder is now eager for the challenge in a new car.
“It’s kind of cool having something different,” Snyder said. “I’m always excited about new stuff.”
From transition from Alcohol Funny Car to Pro Extreme to Top Sportsman, Snyder has never been afraid of something different. He won championships in Alcohol Funny Car and ADRL’s Pro Extreme, adding a Division 3 Top Sportsman championship in 2016.
To pull off the latest title, Snyder and his Snyder Motorsports team made a major transition, moving to an electronic fuel injection (EFI) Roots blower. That EFI set-up will stay in the new Camaro and remains an innovation that has been a difference-maker both on and off the track.
“If you’re not staying on the cutting edge, you’re falling behind,” Snyder said. “These are new and exciting things, and if they work well for us, it’s a bonus for our business. The EFI deal has definitely been exciting.
“But probably the coolest part has been we’ve been successful in dragsters, Funny Cars, door cars, with automatics, clutches, EFI. That’s been a lot of fun.”
Snyder will aim to continue that impressive run with a Camaro that will look quite a bit different than the orange-dominant Corvette. This car will be predominately gray with an blue stripe, with Snyder doing most of the designing and shying away from all-orange simply because there’s “too many orange cars out there now.”
The path to getting the car was also unconventional. Snyder was dropping off motors to a customer in Texas, made an offer on the car and came back to his DeMotte, Ind., home with a new car that was previously owned and tuned by the legendary Howard Moon. “It was a pretty good deal from my standpoint,” Snyder said with a laugh.
The real fun for Snyder has followed, with working rigorously on making their customary major changes to a car. The Camaro isn’t brand new and does have a proven track record, giving Snyder added belief there won’t be much of a transition next season.
“I love that part, taking the car apart, fixing everything and fixing it all up,” Snyder said. “There’s always something new and it’s fun to try and fix that. You never know how temperamental a new car will be, but this is not really a new car. It’s a proven car and we’re excited to see what happens.”
Snyder had planned to increase his schedule a bit from 2017, hoping to make more races in 2018, however an exciting opportunity and move to Fort Worth, Texas with his Snyder Motorsports business in tow put a major delay in the Camaro’s debut. With the late start and the move to warmer weather, Snyder plans to get the new ride ironed out, hit as many races as possible and test a lot over the winter.
“It should be an exciting 2019 for the Snyder Motorsports-ERD Team,” Snyder claims.
Wherever he ends up, the challenge of debuting a new car won’t be a daunting one for a driver whose sole intent is to enjoy himself.
“I don’t really want to run a single schedule,” Snyder said. “We want to have fun and run a bunch of different organizations. It’s fun to race and that’s what we’re out there for.”
-Josh Hachat, Drag Illustrated