X2 what Robert said. No neutral safety switch on a 69 4spd shifter or in the column. It’s above the clutch pedal, easy to see. After 50 years that switch would be a good place to start your troubleshooting. Also, are you pushing the pedal all the way down when starting? Have always had to mat mine almost to the floor.
Google a good quality parts supplier. Try Ames Performance. They do only Pontiac and they know exactly what you need. Talk to a real person and they will get you exactly what you need. There are others too.
I thought it was going to be about the bugs in Colorado! Much happier to rad about drags! Great pics too~ always great when it's a close run. So often one of the cars doesn't hold up. always great to see a near photo finish!!!