The Goodguys 28th annual FuelCurve.com Autumn Get-Together was held November 11 and 12 at the scenic Alameda County Fairgrounds in Pleasanton, California. The second-to-last event on the 2017 Goodguys’ event schedule, The Autumn Get-Together was not only expecting north of 2,500 vehicles through its gates, but featured a schedule packed with a huge variety of events.
In addition to the massive amount of show cars, also on the schedule of events was the Goodguys Autocross, a burnout competition, a Nitro Thunderfest Dragster Exhibit, a full manufacturer’s midway, a swap meet, the ever-popular Cars 4 Sale Corral, and a charity demolition derby put on by the local firefighters union.
The Autumn Get-Together generally marks the end of the Northern California Hot Rod year, but it also marks another occasion – Veterans Day. There was a strongly-patriotic theme across the show, from small American stick flags placed in engine bays, to full-on displays honoring those who have served in our country’s armed forces.
Only a two-day event, Saturday’s festivities started off packed to the gills on all fronts, right out of the gate. The quality of cars was top notch with everything ranging from numbers-matching, unrestored survivors to custom showstoppers with more polished bits than not, to monsters with four-digit horsepower numbers. No matter what your taste in vehicles, there was something at the Autumn Get-Together that would tickle your fancy.
The Goodguys AutoCross somehow shoehorned a mid-sixty-second course into a deceptively small lot. Tight and technical was the name of this course, with most competitors never passing second gear. The field consisted of a healthy mix of standard street cars having fun pushing their limits all the way to heavily-prepared cars designed for competition. Five separate classes kept the playing field fair while accommodating the huge variety of cars in attendance.
Smash 4 Cash
Another really cool feature that was a fan-favorite was the 2017 Smash 4 Cash Demolition Derby presented by Hayward Firefighters. All the proceeds from the demolition derby went to the charities of the Hayward Firefighters Local 1909. A true spectacle, the teams of firefighters put on an amazing show both on and off the track, with their custom liveries and pit area antics.
Our Top Five
While the sheer number of beautiful vehicles at the show makes picking only five vehicles as our “top” cars from the show a herculean task, we just went with our gut – that is to say those cars which generated the most visceral reaction in us over the weekend. So in no particular order…
Arlene and Jay Coriell’s 1969 Plymouth Roadrunner
One of the coolest cars at the show was Arlene and Jay Coriell’s 1969 Plymouth Roadrunner convertible. Besides putting off the vibe of a prototypical “California Cruiser”, this Roadrunner was clean enough to eat off of. The car was restored 15 years ago, in 2002, with all New Old Stock parts – even down to the Mopar battery – and today is a numbers-matching eye-grabber.
One of only 2,128 convertible models manufactured in 1969. It’s powered by the original 335-horsepower 383-cubic-inch “Road Runner” engine backed by the original TorqueFlite 727 three-speed transmission. The gorgeous B-5 Blue paint shines in the sunlight, while the white leather interior is pristine. The Coriell’s have done an amazing job maintaining the ’69 Roadrunner, and looks as good now as the day it rolled off the production line.
Harold Fudge’s 1965 Chevrolet Corvette
Sitting out in the middle of a throughway on Saturday, Harold Fudge’s sleek black 1965 Chevrolet Corvette demanded attention. Drawing you in with its clean lines and tough stance, the details were what really got our heart racing. The custom interior has been dyed red with brushed stainless gauges and controls, along with black accents, creating the timeless black and red color scheme.
Under the hood, modern meets classic, as Fudge dropped a 485-horsepower LS3 from a C6 Corvette between the C2 Corvette’s framerails. To back the powerhouse, Fudge chose a Tremec T56 Magnum six-speed manual transmission to row the gears with. The three-inch side-exit exhaust was custom fabbed and the car sits on a full Ridetech coilover suspension.
The rear bumper has been tucked to clean up the lines, and surprisingly, the deep black paint is actually a new water-based blend. Up front, Wilwood 14-inch drilled and slotted rotors with six-piston calipers bleed speed, while similar 13-inch rotors and four-piston calipers handle the braking in the rear. Schott Mach V two-piece forged wheels complete the package and really set off the look of the car.
Kevin Day’s 2007 Ford Shelby 40th Anniversary GT500
We would be remiss if we didn’t include some modern muscle in the mix. Kevin Day’s Vista Blue 2007 GT500 was stunning, and as we got closer, we realized it wasn’t “just” a GT500, but rather a 40th Anniversary GT500 – number 110 of 3012, to be exact. The 40th Anniversary package took a standard GT500 and added carbon fiber mirrors, rocker panels and a front splitter, along with various other exclusive trim pieces. It added front and rear brake ducts, a Shelby/Eibach coilover suspension and swaybars, and a Borla Exhaust, to make sure the car stood out from its pedestrian GT500 brethren.
After a few years, the standard supercharged 5.4-liter GT500 power wasn’t enough, and in 2011, Day took the car back to Shelby American for the Super Snake upgrade which consisted of a Shelby/Ford Racing Whipple twin-screw supercharger, 3.73 rear gears, an aluminum driveshaft, an upgraded intercooler, short-throw shifter, and a Spec twin-disc clutch.
With 17 psi, the car put down 664 horsepower and 600 pound-feet of torque on Shelby’s dyno. While the car started life as only one of 312 2007 40th Anniversary GT500s, Kevin Day has turned it into one of a kind.
Rod McMahon’s 1969 Plymouth Roadrunner
We didn’t even realize we had picked two Roadrunners (let alone the same year) until we got back and sorted the photos. Rod McMahon’s 1969 Plymouth Roadrunner called to us for a totally different reason than the convertible; this one is a factory hot rod.
McMahon’s Roadrunner is one of 1,412 with the 440 A12 option package. The A12 option added the 440 cubic-inch engine, Edelbrock intake manifold with three Holley two-barrel carbs – a 350 cfm center carb with 500 cfm front and rear carbs – a lift-off fiberglass hood and bare wheels. A Hurst four-speed transmission backed the 440, and 3.55 gears and a Posi-Traction differential gets the power – rated at 390 horsepower and 490 pound-feet of torque from the factory – to the ground, and the Roadrunner up to speed in a hurry.
Being drag racing fans, the history behind the A12 option, along with the amazing condition of McMahon’s example, along with the fun little add-ons he has set up in the car (lots of Roadrunner stuffed animals, and a “Beep Beep!” generator) definitely put a smile on our face.
Dave and Donna Van Arkel’s 1968 Mustang GT “R” Code Drag Pack
Dave and Donna Van Arkel’s 1968 Mustang GT got our engine revving for a number of reasons. First, is how beautiful it is for being an unrestored survivor car that was actually drag raced. Dave’s dad, Lee Van Arkel, purchased the 428 Cobra Jet brand new at the local Ford dealer with the intention of racing it. Competing in C Stock on cheater slicks, the car carded 12.90s at 115 miles per hour in the quarter-mile.
Dave and Donna have maintained the car in original condition since his dad’s passing, opting not to restore anything. Looking at the car, there’s not much that needs restoration, anyway, especially considering there are only 34,000 miles on the odometer.
The R-code Drag Pack put a 428 cubic-inch Cobra Jet mill under the hood, with a close-ratio 4-speed top-loader, and a Detroit Locker in the rearend with 3.91 gears. The car currently sits on American Racing wheels and BFG G-Force T/A KDWS tires are the only non-factory parts on the car.