The Annual Trans Am and Firebird Nationals near Dayton Ohio, just concluded this past weekend (August 22nd -24th). We were fortunate to have a few of our members there as well as our friend, Tim Dye actually speaking at the event. Mike Noun our Technical Director was there taking pictures and has some great comments on this fantastic event and the Firebirds he found.
“Most of the field consisted of 4th Gen Birds, not surprising as they are the easiest (and most comfortable) to drive long distances. This was the 30th Annual Trans Am Nationals, and their new venue was a Holiday Inn in Fairborn OH. A very nice complex! I can honestly say that this location was superior to the one they had been using for the past several years. I would estimate they had around 400 cars. While some cruise nights or car shows pull this many participants, the best thing about this show is that ALL cars are Firebirds! Sadly, every year there seems to be fewer and fewer 1st Gens in attendance. However, I would estimate about 20-25 1st Gens on the show field. Here’s some great ‘birds that really caught my eye….”
1969 Firebird 400HO – owned by Curt Richards. This is a special ordered Windward Blue car. Curt is a super nice guy out of Kentucky, and he owns the REAL 1969 Trans Am prototype, which was silver in color, no stripes, and was used as a press fleet car before Pontiac switched over to the white with blue stripes paint scheme that would eventually make production. Curt’s silver prototype is being fully restored by legendary restoration man Scott Tiemann, and the car will debut at the 2014 MCACN Show in Chicago this November 2014.
Super rare 1970 Trans Am with red interior.
For the 30th Anniversary of the Trans Am Nationals, here’s a nice display of multi-generations. 1969 (1st Anniversary), 1974 (5th Anniversary), 1979 10th Anniversary, 1984 15th Anniversary, 1989 20th Anniversary, 1994 25th Anniversary, and a 1999 30th Anniversary.
Part of the show field for the 1st Gens.
An unassuming Limelight Green with green vinyl top 1969 Firebird 350 (3 pictures). This was actually a factory 350 H.O. 4-speed car owned by famed Pure Stocks drag racer Dan Jensen!
First generation Firebird owners getting their ‘birds ready for the show.
Two nice 1968 Verdoro Green Firebirds. At top, a 400 coupe with black Cordova top, wearing one of my favorite aftermarket wheels, American Racing TorqThrust’s. Bottom, is a 350 with Parchment interior apearing in stock Rally II wheels.
A very nice Starlight Black 1968 Firebird 350 with a Parchment interior. This one had a rare bench seat and column shift automatic. A Cameo white 1968 Firebird with a Sprint 6 and a 4-speed. A 1969 Firebird converted to a Trans Am, with the reverse paint scheme of blue/white.
One of the highlights of the Trans Am Nationals is a Saturday night cruise into Tipp City, where Firebirds take over the entire downtown area. Lots of great people, music, and a festival atmosphere. It was a very big turnout with about 300 cars!
There’s always an oddball in the bunch! This is a 1973 Formula 400 that someone ordered in a color called Desert Sand, with a Chamois vinyl top. All the docs were displayed. Probably the only one ordered in this color combo.
My wife’s favorite car was this 1976 Trans Am. She loved the bright Carousel Red on a 2nd Gen car, and wondered why she never saw one before. I explained that Pontiac discontinued Carousel Red after 1969, and then brought it back in 1976 only, and only for the Firebird.
1976-1981 Special Edition cars are always nicely represented. There were probably about 20 in total.
1973 and 1974 were the only two years for the legendary Super Duty 455 in the Firebird. I took this picture when I realized all the SD-455 hood scoops were in line!
Tim Dye shared, “It does not happen very often, but at the Trans Am Nationals we were able to get one of each of what collectors refer to as the Lady Birds together for a couple of pictures. Tim Harmon owns the Red Bird, Debby Manning the Sky Bird, Penny and I brought the Yellow Bird.”
Here’s my (Ken Pitcher) comments on some very cool ‘birds Tim caught on camara. The top on is one of my alltime favorites, a 1973 Brewster Green Trans Am. This was the only year for that special color. Check out the Ram Air set up on the 1969 triple black convertible. The Regimental Red 400 convertible looks perfect with it’s red interior and white top, making a striking color combination. And the 350 HO convertible at bottom, with the rarely seen wire wheel covers looks classy in Aegean Blue and Parchment interior.
Jim Lyons, former Pontiac Engineer (right) talks with enthusiasts after his seminar at the Trans Am Nationals. He was heavily involved in the 301 turbo. Tim brought this example that was recently donated to the Pontiac Oakland Automobile Museum for his talk, and had Jim autograph it.
Overall, it looks like the Trans Am Nationals was a can’t miss show full of beautiful and rare Firebirds of all years, and we were very fortunate to have knowledgeable members that were able to share their pictures and thoughts with us! Thanks Guys!
(Story by Mike Noun with comments by Tim Dye and Tom Mayhugh. Pictures by Mike Noun and Tim Dye.)
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