Our Pepsi Challenger Eagle from 1981 was sort of unique. It didn’t owe anything to Europe, it was developed right here in California. It had our own brand of aerodynamics. It had a stock block Chevrolet—essentially a sprint car engine we had done a bit of development on. It was designed by John Ward and had some aerodynamic elements that Trevor Harris kind of got us started on. It was just a very successful car. In fact, it was successful enough that it sort of ticked off the establishment in CART and they changed the rules to get rid of it.
Everyone was calling their car’s downforce “ground-effects,” and we didn’t want to call ours ground-effects because it was so different, so we called ours BLAT, the BLAT effect. They said, “What’s that?” I said, well, it’s called Boundary Layer Adhesion Technology. So we had some fun, tongue-in-cheek, in those days, in addition to being able to embarrass the conventional cars.
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