An Edelbrock X-C8 cross ram intake and 600-cfm carbs feed a 434ci Dart Little-M small-block Chevy race engine. Vintage M/T aluminum valve covers were added to the Air Flow Research heads, and Headers by Little People Customs built those impressive headers, with Dynamax glasspacks for the street. The transmission is an old-school manually shifted B&M Clutch Turbo with a McLeod Racing clutch.
The stock grille and hood were kept, with the hood modified to flip forward and a scoop added. Scott Nething at T’s Body Shop in Ventura sprayed the Mercedes Firemist Red paint. Waldo in Ventura added the graphics. Red-tinted plexiglass replaces the glass.
The seats were upgraded with Naugahyde-covered Hunsaker highback racing buckets with Simpson seatbelts. A set of Stewart-Warner gauges were mounted in the dash, and a red metalflake Mooneyes steering wheel on a homemade column. Doors feature aluminum panels and the swing out–style rollbars make it easier to get in and out.
After a history of pursuing win lights, both Vic and his Henry J are now enjoying the more relaxed driving experience of cruising up and down the California coast.
Flying Purple Pavement Eater
Rick Shephard’s ’48 Anglia
While showing his ’48 Anglia in the 2012 Grand National Roadster Show’s vintage race car display, Rick Shephard got a surprise.
“There I met Frank Brown who, after looking at the Anglia, felt that it may be the car he owned in the early ’60s. He pulled out a worn-out photo of an orange Anglia that he’s carried with him for 44 years. This car was painted multiple colors of purple by Carl Smith in the late ’60s, but Frank spotted his orange paint in an area where the paint had chipped. He said that when he saw the car he just had a feeling that it was the one.
“In 1964, Frank installed a Hilborn FI small-block Chevy, four-speed, and ’57 Chevy rearend to build a drag racer. He and his wife raced it at several Southern California dragstrips until 1968 when he sold it. I remember seeing it race at Irwindale with the name ‘Lil’ Pooper’ and an outhouse painted on it. It passed through a few more owners until the early ’70s when my friend Jim ‘Smitty’ Smith acquired the rolling body shell with purple paint. Several of us helped rebuild the car, which raced off and on for many years.”
When Rick eventually bought the car from Smith, he added mufflers, a radiator, a water pump, and some M/T Sportsman tires and drove it on the street—with a race engine and 4.88 gears—for 10 years. He later built the current engine, a Chevy 427 loaded with go-fast internals. A Mooneyham 6-71 blower, two Edelbrock carbs, and a BDS manifold supply gas and air; a Don Zig Vertex magneto provides ignition. Hooker headers and glasspack mufflers handle what’s left. The TH400 was modified with a manual shift body.
The 4.56:1 gears get the 15x15 Cragar Super Trick wheels and Mickey Thompson meats moving; Moroso front runners roll on Cragar SS wheels. The 2x3-inch tubing “back-half” features a ’57 Pontiac rearend equipped with coilovers, 30-inch ladder bars, and a custom Panhard bar. The front suspension includes buggy springs, tube shocks, and split wishbones.
Rick drives the car from a fiberglass race bucket seat, which has been upholstered in vinyl, watching Stewart-Warner gauges and a column-mounted Auto Meter tach, steering the Moon purple ’flake wheel and shifting a ’66 Mustang shifter, with a Simpson belt and chromoly rollcage keeping him safe. He drives it as much as he can, but not as much as he wants. “The older you get the harder it is to get into an Anglia!” As for Brown, “It was great to see the look in his eyes as he sat behind the steering wheel again after 44 years.”