Rich Guido owns a 1965 Pontiac GTO that most would describe as a track car with over 1500 horses under its hood.
MyStarCollectorCar has featured a few articles about Rich in the past because he chooses to take the road not taken by a strip car with an insane number of ponies under its hood: Rich drives to every race event in his Poncho–regardless of the long distances between his home in Alberta, Canada and numerous tracks in North America.
Perhaps the best example is his 3000-mile trip from Alberta Canada to Florida for the annual Sick Week drive and drag competition-in the dead of winter no less. Rich has driven his ’65 GTO to Sick Week for the past few years, including 2023, and won his division (Stick Shift) in the bargain.
The long drive from Alberta to Florida just to compete in Sick Week would be way too much for most mere mortals, but Rich is pretty matter of fact about his amazing accomplishments.
He still tows a trailer–but his Goat is the tow vehicle-and his enclosed trailer houses an array of parts and tools so Rich can handle roadside (or trackside) repairs when the situation inevitably arises for him. Rich is a fearless adventurer and a talented wrencher, two invaluable assets when one tackles the long distances between tracks in a 58-year-old road rocket.
Pontiac purists are always happy when they learn Rich prefers to use a Pontiac engine in his GTO, not an easy choice since the Pontiac brand is no longer in existence. The easy route would be an LS swap, given the incredible popularity of the Chevy engine and much easier access to performance upgrades, but Rich has never chosen the easy route over the years and eventually upgraded to his current 521 cubic-inch turbo-charged, fuel-injected Pontiac big block monster bolted to a 6-speed manual transmission.
The kicker is Rich can hit about 18 MPG on the road to distant drag tracks in his ‘65 Goat, an amazing statistic given the car’s otherworldly horsepower.
Rich also kept a Canadian event on his 2023 race calendar, namely the Miles of Mayhem competition that takes place in late July and requires drivers to travel a grueling 1500-mile route to racetracks in Alberta and Saskatchewan.
He also took part in the 2023 edition of the Rocky Mountain Race Week competition that prompted Rich to drive 3400 miles in his Super Goat to compete in the annual Drag ‘n Drive event through Colorado and Nebraska.
Any of the aforementioned Drag ‘n Drive competitions would be well beyond the reach of most cars and their owners, but Rich’s final major event of 2023 was Death Week, an ironman Drag ‘n Drive competition that required him to drive over 5400 miles in total through the southwestern United States in late October and early November.
Even better, Rich was able to enjoy the company of his dad along the way.
BY: Jim Sutherland
Jim Sutherland is a veteran automotive writer whose work has been published by many major print and online publications. The list includes Calgary Herald, The Truth About Cars, Red Deer Advocate, RPM Magazine, Edmonton Journal, Montreal Gazette, Windsor Star, Vancouver Province, and Post Media Wheels Section.