Chris Stuttard’s LH Torana – BADLH8

We spotted Chris Stuttard’s BADLH8 1974 LH Torana in the pits at the recent Tuff Mounts Holden Nationals at Heathcote Park Raceway

Photographers: Chris Thorogood

We hit Chris Stuttard up for a chat about his 10-second, all-motor, street-driven Torry at the recent Holden Nationals .

How long have you had the Torana?

I got it around five years ago. It’s been a dream of mine since I was a kid to own a Torana. I’ve always been into Holdens because it’s always what my dad had growing up. I actually missed out on an LC coupe just before I bought this one, so I jumped on the LH straight away!

What condition was it in?

It had a 355 stroker in it, but it was a bit sad. It was already painted in the HSV Cherry Black paint – that was done around 20 years ago – and it already had the flares on it as well.

What’ve you done to it so far?

I’ve had the 355 rebuilt twice now, because the first rebuild was absolutely terrible. The 355 in it now is an HQ 308 block with VN heads built by Wayne Cartledge at Racecomp Motorsports, and it’s been awesome. It probably makes around 440hp at the wheels, and I did 12 passes at the Holden Nationals with no dramas at all. I’ve also rewired the whole car, because that was a basket case when I got it, and there’s a bunch of other stuff I’ve changed on it over the years.

What’s the rest of the driveline?

It’s got a Trimatic built by DTM Transmissions and a nine-inch diff with 3.7:1 gears. I want to redo the rear end with an anti-roll bar and some other upgrades to get it a bit faster.

How did the Holden Nationals go for you?

It was awesome! I’ve done Holden Nats a few times before, and this one was just as good. I got a PB with a 10.64@126mph, but in the racing the same thing happened as 2019: I won my first elimination, but then in the second round I spun the wheels and just lost to the other guy. But that’s why I love dial-in racing; you don’t need an eight-second car to be competitive, and I just race to have fun.

Do you use it much on the street?All the bloody time! I was cruising the car around on Sunday the day after Holden Nationals, and sometimes I even take it to work. I organise a lot of charity meets down here in Geelong, so I love getting my car out and using it on the street. Being a four-door, I can put the kids in it, too.Any other projects on the go?I’m restoring my dad’s EJ Special sedan as a tribute to him; he passed away from cancer around six years ago. It’s got 47,500 miles on the clock and I’ve got it to the stage now where the original grey motor is running. I just need to finish off the bodywork. I’m restoring it to be as original as possible, and hopefully I’ll get it on the road soon.