Photos and Text by Tony Huntimer
So it all started back in 2001… Not Goodguys. I’m talking about when I started writing my first book. The one titled, “How to Build & Modify GM Pro-Touring Street Machines.” While writing the book, I decided it wouldn’t be complete unless I included the Camaro that forever altered my thoughts of Camaros and cars as I knew them. I’m referring to none other than Big Red. Using search engines, I was able to contact Dan and RJ Gottlieb. They were kind enough to send me pictures of Big Red and my book was complete. I kept in touch with RJ over the years. When he told me that he was going to make a documentary of Big Red, I was excited. It took a few years to put it together, but it was worth the wait. A few weeks back, RJ called and said he wanted to interview me for Episode #8. The crew is doing some final cuts and he wanted to include me in the series.
Smash-cut to Friday evening… I’m at Pacific Fabrication in Gilroy, sitting on a stool surrounded by Camaros (including my old ’68 which now has mini-tubs, new paint, and a bunch of other new stuff) and a camera in my face.
Saturday, I ran the WipeOut run (and 5K) with my wife. The Big Red production crew were out at Goodguys getting extra show car footage for episode 8. If you were out there, you may have seen them. Or they may have seen you!
Sunday morning , I woke up early and drove the TestCarDatabase.com project/test Camaro (with the newly installed FAST EZ-EFI2…only 5 miles on the system) to Goodguys. I was supposed to arrive at the entrance gate at 8 AM, so I could meet up with my new Instagram friend @datsikk for the first time. His real name is Mallen. He’s a really cool guy and has a badass ’69 Camaro that’s way different than any other ’69 Camaro. We wanted to meet there, so we could park together at the show.
(For inquiring minds, the initial experience with the FAST EZ-EFI2 so far…awesome!)
We both drove our ’69 Camaros into the event and magically got two of the best parking spots on the fairgrounds! It was in the middle of the front entrance grass.
Mallen’s red ’69 has black Z28 stripes. He wanted to do something a little different after seeing the white Z28 stripes on Big Red, so he used the lace paint technique to apply white PlastiDip stripes to his black stripes. He also used AutoDip spray paint on his polished wheels for a different look. He really likes the AutoDip products. In general, he likes messing around with the “dip” products because if you don’t like it, just peel it and try a different color. Looking around his car, you can tell that he thinks outside of the box. I don’t have a big ego, so I can be honest and say that just about everyone spent about 10 times the amount of time looking at Mallen’s ’69 than they did looking at the yellow TestCarDatabase.com ’69 test car…that was sitting right next to it.
The Goodguys 29th West Coast Nationals was presented by Flowmaster. This event always brings out the best of the best in the Bay Area and beyond. For this one, the year cutoff was 1972, so there were plenty of street rods as well as muscle cars. This show is right up my alley!
The site for the autocross was full of builders and vendors showing off their creations and products. All the big names were there with great stuff. Like usual, the swap meet was full of new or old stuff you need or want…even if you’re not looking for anything in particular.
A walk out to the “Winner’s Circle” was a great way to see all the best of the best. There’s some amazing looking cars and trucks all gathered in one area. One of my favorites of the show was the massive Deco Liner. That 6-wheeled truck was crazy detailed! Everything was amazing. Even the really cool cascaded gauge cluster fit the art deco/modern art theme.
Of course the show is full of awesome iron that didn’t make it to the “Winner’s Circle,” so you have to see it all. Truthfully, my other favorite of the show was Mallen’s ’69 Camaro. I’ve seen a lot of Camaros over the years. It was refreshing to see something put together by someone who thinks outside of the box.
Take a peek at all of the event photos and pick your own favorites!
So all in all, I got my first interview, my first 5K, maiden voyage of the FAST EZ-EFI2 setup, got to meet Mallen and his badass Camaro, and take in a car show! …oh I also got to partake in my favorite carshow snack, a piping-hot freshly-cooked corndog. That was a great weekend!