A '27 T body in a shop in Troy, Michigan
commissioned by Steve Gilkey of Knoxville,
Tennessee which came from California
is featured here. The nose, hood,
and pans were shaped much like those
on Dick Flint's famous red Model A.
Though this car has 248-inch Dodge
Red Ram "baby Hemi" in place
of the flathead that sits in Flint's
Model A. It also has a '39 top-shift
trans, a Halibred quickie and a set
of red Kelsey spoke wheels.
Driving or riding in a fenderless roadster has no comparison. You get to look down a hood full of louvers and watch the front wheels spin. The ride is wonderful and the noise and chop are very tolerable if not a splendid enjoyment.
More Facts and Figures
This old Jack Thompson '27 track roadster was a dream come true once the finances were established and Rick Creese finished this splendid custom auto. With a 2x3 rectangle shaped tube frame and a small-block Chevy and new front and rear suspension this classic became a pleasure cruise.
The deck lid is complimented overhead by a encircling-rear pushbar, as well as the side-mounted '39 Ford teardrop taillights and Tommy the greek design on the turtle deck with a personalized license plate.
The traditional and decorative nerf bar with initial placed center formed by Creese from mild steel sets this '27 track roadster off just right.
Itchy Otis had the pleasure of striping
the 8-inch headlight buckets in the
"Tommy the Greek" style.
The sprint/lakes-type headers, formed by Tri-C were blued out and due to heating issues an extra amount of louvers were created and weren't the easiest to paint and stripe. The front suspension includes a Super bell front axle with 4-inch drop '37 spindles, JFZ brakes, a single leaf spring and four-bar split wishbones make this classic come to life.
With no doors, no roof, no air, no
sounds and no six-way seats you can
see why the nerf-mounted step plates
were a crucial addition.
A once upon a time stand in for Evel Knievel, Gary Davis has worked his way all the up to stunt coordinator and second unit sound director for many films such as: Teminator 2, Patriot Games and F/X as well as many more.
So no wonder this guy can have Tri-C help him create such an awesome machine.
If Davis isn't spinning around the block in his track roadster he is hard at work riding his collection of vintage flat track and TT motorcycles including a triumph twins, BSA Gold Stars and Matchless one-lungers.
Since the track roadsters were dual-purpose cars their owners would make turning passes at the El Mirage during the off season. To the left was a dark blue '27 T owned by Jack Thompson and was on the cover of the Aug. '58 issue of Hot Rod with his huge 7/16 T 7/16-inch flathead that was being restored to it's original condition was more than powerful enough.
This famed Dick Kraft '23 T was on the January '73 cover and featured was featured as an old-track star built in the early '50s and became the Highland Planting Spl.
Pete Chapouris sits in his British racing green ' 27 T with his son Pete Jr. with Windshield posts carved by Lil' John Buttera.
Track roadsters have had a great spectator
appeal and have generated allot of
energy. Just look at this photo of
Jim Rathman (16) leading Jack McGrath
(1) which became Indy drivers.
We here at Tri-C Engineering would like to thank
Rod&Custom magazine for this product profile.