Ted Baltuch of Westmount, Quebec, Canada, had different aspirations for this car than most builders. He didn't build it to race, he didn't build it to show, he built it to drive. Every choice he made would ultimately be to make the car a better driver. He built up the factory 455 to 466 inches to flaunt effortless power from idle to 5,000 rpm. To a racer, that's a low rpm to be confined to, but for a street Buick, it's just right. The interior follows the same street theme, with freshly fluffed and re-covered bucket seats. The gauges are all factory, the only difference being that every single one of the gauges and lights work. The center of the dash houses the factory 8-track player. To keep sanity, Ted also installed a 6-disc CD changer that operates though an FM frequency so not to harass the dash too much. Ted included pictures of another GS at Napierville's NHRA Raceway, where it consistently annihilated a Hemi car, proving to him once and for all that Buicks are faster. He ended his statement with, "Wouldn't you rather have a Buick?"

1968 BUICK GS400 CONVERTIBLE
Car owner: Ted Baltuch; Westmount, Quebec, Canada
Photographer: Ted Baltuch
Camera: Canon SD300 4.0MP
Photo location: Montreal
Engine: 466ci big-block Buick
Cylinder heads: Ported 1970 Stage 1 iron heads
Camshaft: Crower hydraulic .514-/.525-inch lift
Intake: Edelbrock aluminum
Carb/induction: 800-cfm Holley
Ignition: MSD Digital 6 ignition control box,
  rev limiter, and wires
Transmission: Turbo 400 with
  2,500-rpm stall converter
Cooling: Be Cool radiator,
  Flex-A-Lite dual electric fans
Rearend model & gearing: Original with
  3.42 gears and posi
Suspension/brakes: Edelbrock gas shocks,
  springs, and control arms,
  Hotchkis front and rear torsion bars,
  factory disc brakes
Body & Paint: Silver Mist/Inca Black
Wheels: Wheel Vintique’s 15X8-inch ralleys
Tires: BFGoodrich Radial T/A 245/60R15
Peak hp: 362 hp, 435 lb-ft torque at the wheels
Best ¼-mile time: 13.2 @ 107 mph
Built by: owner
Years owned: 5 years
Cost to build: $40,000

Jerry Alber is the fresh new owner of this race-ready '72 Vega. He purchased it from Craig Beckwith at a car show in Watervliet, Missouri. Craig had it for about a year, and was the one to enter it into our photo contest. Since the handoff, current owner Jerry has decorated it with Yenko GT decals to give it an authentic race vibe. Like anyone else who buys a new car, they spend the first couple of nights cleaning and buffing every part to reveal their maximum luster. Jerry was proud to breathe new life into the polished aluminum Draglites and trim. He has big plans for his new toy, including updated suspension to match the work that has been done in the rear. He still doesn't know every bolt of this car yet, so we're sure more things will be changed down the road. When we called him he was at the dragstrip, but without the pink slip back from the DMV, he is waiting to collect his first timeslip. Good luck, Jerry!

1972 CHEVROLET VEGA
Car owner: Jerry Alber; Howe, IN
Photographer: Craig Beckwith; LaPorte, IN
Camera: Canon Supershot
Photo location: Laporte, IN
Engine: 355ci small-block Chevy
Cylinder heads: GM Vortec iron
Intake: Edelbrock Performer
Carb/induction: 750-cfm Edelbrock
Ignition: MSD 6AL ignition control box
Transmission: Turbo 400
Cooling: aluminum radiator
  with mechanical pump and fan
Rearend model & gearing: ’62 Chevy
  third-member style,
  with 4.88 gears
Suspension/brakes: four-link rear, disc/drum brakes
Wheels: Weld Draglites
Tires: Pro Track
Built by: n/a
Years owned: 3 months
Cost to build: $12,000