NeSmith Founder Vaughn Announces New Super Series Using GMPP’s CT525

the NeSmith Chevrolet Dirt Late Model Series at East Bay Raceway. (Photo Source: East Bay Raceway)

NeSmith Chevrolet Dirt Late Model Series Found and Director Mike Vaughn has announced that he will be behind an economical super late model series that will make its debut in 2013 featuring the General Motors Performance Parts CT525 Crate Engine. The series will have a 22 to 24 race season that will award $30,000 to the season champion. Thanks to Short Track Action for bringing us this announcement

The Chevrolet Performance CT525 All-Aluminum racing engine is an affordable and sealed engine that has proven to be reliable and successful on the track. The engine can be taken home for $6,995 from NeSmith Chevrolet in Georgia and is race ready with the exception of a carburetor, fuel pump, power steering pump and headers. When all is said and done the grand total would come out to $9,254.

“We’re moving forward with giving the Chevrolet Performance CT 525 Engine a spot on the stage of dirt late model racing,” stated Vaughn during the series Annual Awards Banquet on Saturday. “This affordable all-aluminum engine has proven itself to be reliable and successful on the race track, and it is time to give it its own series. For 2013, we will have a 22 to 24-race series with a $30,000-to-win point fund to highlight the CT 525 Engine.”

The future of the Chevrolet Performance 604 and 602 Crate Engine Series will go unharmed as the CT525 will open an additional series.

“The series for the CT525 Engine will be separate to the current tour for the 604 and 602 Crate Engines which will remain the same for 2013,” Vaughn said. “However, the 604 and 602 Crate Engines will also be eligible to compete in the series with the CT525.”
All rebuilds and repair work for the CT525 will be done under the same roof at the new CT525 Rebuild Center where it will also be resealed. All work done in the building will be documented and given to series officials.

“Bill Martens, myself, and our respective staffs have worked together very closely over the past three years in the research and development of the Chevrolet Performance CT525 Engine,” stated Vaughn “We also took some of the lessons we learned with the 604 and 602 Crate Engines, and the placement of the Rebuild Center was the final piece of the R&D puzzle before being able to move forward with the new series.”

“I’ve been competing with the CT525 in super late model competition since 2009, and I’ve run over 40 races with it trouble-free with no mechanical issues,” stated National Dirt Late Model Hall of Fame Inductee Ronnie Johnson. “Since I put the CT525 in my race car, all I’ve had to do is change the oil. The engine has a hydraulic valve train and you do not have to adjust the valves. I can go out into my shop right now, fire it up, and it’s just as crisp as it was when it was new.”

“I’ve won some $10,000-to-win races with the CT 525 Engine against $40,000 super late model engines, and I’ve run in the top ten in about 90 percent of the races I’ve been in with the CT525,” Johnson said. “The way I see it, why spend $40,000 when you can accomplish the same thing with an engine that costs less than $10,000.”

Drivers have already shown a liking for the new series with commitments already being made. Along with the announcement of the CT525 Engine, Vaughn also announced more news to lower a team’s budget.

“There is no doubt that the engine costs can be kept under control, but now it’s time to go on to the next highest expense on a dirt late model and begin to address the rising costs of racing shocks,” Vaughn said. “In continuing our pursuit of being America’s Leader In Affordable Dirt Late Model Racing, we are currently working with Bilstein Shocks to produce a $150 Spec Shock as an option for our competitors, and give them the opportunity to participate in a Series Within A Series.”

Vaught has stated that there will be multiple Bilstein Spec Shocks to choose from that will be sealed and have a serial number and will be used on all four corners and on the fifth coil of the race car. Cars that choose to compete with these options for an entire season will have an additional point fund that will pay the top five spots.

For more information on the NeSmith Chevrolet Dirt Late Model Series visit

About the author

Stephanie Odom

Stephanie Odom, though most just call her Steph, grew up on the Central Coast of California where she currently resides. Steph is a Journalism student at a local community college where she plays soccer as well. She became involved in dirt track racing at a young age with her father racing at their local track. She can be found on the weekends chasing the West Coast's biggest Sprint Car shows as well as the West Coast Shootout Super Late Model Series.
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