John began reading about a different kind of car builder-Mark Stielow-and discovered that his "Red Witch" and "Thrasher" were really what he wanted to be building. His old plans disintegrated faster than the stitching in a Tijuana tuck and roll job, and he made new friends who helped him understand the ethic-especially Steve Chryssos, who piqued his awareness and schooled him on the finer points of style (not to be confused with styling). What is the II Much Nova, then? How about a car with honest-to-Pete 1g-plus lateral acceleration and enough grunt under the hood to make your head ache. It's a road racer that looks like a hit man.

Wow! John ditched the first suspension, and put in a custom-designed system that grew from his new Web site pals, Brain Schein and Katz Tsubai. Poof! Thousands of dollars and months flew by. John now needed better brakes. And more money. And more power. He'd gone through two motors before he laid bread on Wegner Automotive Research to build the 427, and he was going to do the bodywork and paint himself. He then deemed his talents too thin to do it right, so he commissioned Pro-Touring's David Sloan for some serious help.

Unlike a lot of people, John is sincere. He believes in karma. Therefore, he'd be remiss if he didn't thank those who were most kind to him along his path. Lunati and Holley extended their rotating assembly, camshaft, and EFI hardware. Auto Meter sent gauges and ancillaries. Wegner Automotive Research built the engine, supplied its accessory dress and cylinder heads, and porked it on their dynamometer. Stainless Works and Al Noe redid the original system in stainless steel. Wilwood supplied the brakes, master cylinders, and remote pedal assembly. Pirelli stood up with its race-oriented rubber. Moser Engineering laid out the aluminum center section and axle shafts. Ididit blessed him with a steering column, Ron Davis a dual-fan radiator core, and Art Morrison delivered the rails, rollcage, and axle housing.

Pretty side up, John is grateful for Road Killer Customs' (Canton, Georgia) bodywork, PPG Blue with metallic black exterior and interior paint, and the Global Finishing downdraft paint booth they did it in. Prodigy Customs (Apopka, Florida) helped during the final assembly, touch-up, and EFI, and finishing the interior was a lot easier with help from 1 Off Rides (Kissimmee, Florida). Finally, Mike Norris at Norris Motorsports (also of Apopka) did the engine tuning and set up the clutch.

Most people change their stuff out after the car's been done. Not John. He did it on the run. He made three fuel tanks, redid the tranny crossmember twice, and replaced the front 'cage tubes and rear seat frame twice. With help from Stainless Works, he also built another set of headers.

"In the end," John says, "I went through three engines, two transmissions, three rear suspensions, three fuel tanks, two rear seats, three front seats, three pedal setups, two EFI controllers, two intake manifolds, two hoods, two sets of wheels, two sets of brakes, and 1.5 rollcages. Luckily, my wife blames me!"

On top of it all, John has probably made automotive history with the II Much Nova: it represents a high watermark for a homebuilt hot rod that is, after all, really much more than that.