Actually, “subtle but striking” is probably the best way to describe this ’57. JF prefers to dress his cars down by smoothing lines, shaving unwanted emblems, and customizing trim and panels in a way that doesn’t distort the original look of the car. For example, they may look stock, but both front and rear bumpers are custom-built one-piece parts with no bolts showing. The famed ’57 Bel Air quarter trim is also completely custom with a different ribbing pattern, and it may be the first we’ve ever seen that’s actually better looking than the original.

Originally the plan for the 28,000-mile original (that had been in the owner’s family since the ’70s) was to build a simple driver. Nevertheless, as the build progressed so did the design, and the ’57 quickly morphed into a showstopper destined for SEMA and other high-profile events. But like we said, JF likes to drive ’em. “I’m very proud that we made it a race car before it has even seen more than 150 miles—and before it’s even been to its first indoor car show, which is due in January,” JF told us after his hot laps on the Spring Mountain Motorsports Ranch road course. That—plus the road grime accrued during the rain and snow-plagued OUSCI Road Rally—adds up to some quality cleaning time for JF and his crew before the show season. We’d say it was the perfect way to prove the street cred of this show car.

OUSCI Results
Detroit Speed & Engineering Road Rally: completed
RideTech Autocross: 37th
BFGoodrich Hot Lap Challenge: 41st
Wilwood Speed-Stop Challenge: 21st
Raybestos Performance & Design Challenge: 3rd
Driver: JF Launier (builder)

By The Numbers

1957 Chevy Bel Air

JF Kustoms/Dan and Anita MacDonald; Osoyoos, BC, Canada


Type: 572ci big-block Chevy, GM Performance Parts (GMPP) crate engine

Block: GMPP iron, four-bolt mains

Oiling: GMPP

Rotating assembly: GMPP forged

Cylinder heads: GMPP aluminum rectangular port, 118cc chamber, 2.25/1.88 stainless steel valves

Camshaft: GMPP .632-/.632-inch lift, 254/264 degrees duration at .050

Valvetrain: GMPP aluminum roller rockers, 1.7 ratio

Induction: GMPP single-plane intake with 850-cfm Holley, Spectre Performance tubing and joints

Exhaust: custom JF Kustoms headers with 3-inch pipes, Flowmaster mufflers

Fuel system: Holley

Ignition: GMPP HEI

Cooling: GMPP aluminum, short-style water pump, Be Cool radiator

Output: 620 hp, 650 lb-ft of torque

Built by: GM Performance Parts


Transmission: Bowler Transmissions 4L80E

Rearend: Strange 9-inch with 3.73 gears


Front suspension: custom JF Kustoms crossmember and Art Morrison tubular control arms with RideTech coilovers and sway bar

Rear suspension: custom JF Kustoms triangulated four-link with RideTech coilovers and sway bar

Brakes: 13- and 11-inch Baer brakes

Wheels & Tires

Wheels: 18x8 and 19x10 Curtis Speed “Crowned”

Tires: 245/445R18 and 315/40R19 Goodyear

1969 Corvette

“A Touch Of Trans-AM”

We’ve toyed with the idea of building a C3-generation Vette for years, but could never really put our finger on just the right look. Well, from the moment we laid eyes on Dan Livezey’s ’69, we knew he’d hit the nail on the head. That’s exactly how to build a C3 Vette right. Of course it didn’t start off anywhere near this good looking. Dan’s buddy who helped him load it up told him he was crazy for buying a Vette that was little more than a shell that had been sitting for 30 years.