1 ) Ed Winfield - in conversation ( 1978 )
As far as influential and iconic hot rod pioneers go, there is no one more important than Ed Winfield. He was a mechanical genius who put his gift to work on his one great passion... auto racing. That said, even with his fame and the reverence that generations of hot rodders and race car builders felt toward him, audio and video recordings of him are nearly nonexistent. This can mostly be explained by Winfield's reputation as an extremely private and solitary individual. It is well known that he rarely let anyone into his shop and went as far as providing a "pick-up window" at the front of his place of business where he would accept payment and then pass the modified part back through the small opening and to his customer before closing the hatch and going back to work. Because of this and the mystery surrounding his brilliance, we are pleased to be able to share this extremely rare audio recording of Ed speaking with some friends on the 10th of June 1978. Listen in as Ed takes his listeners through the finer points of a subject that he will forever be known for... camshaft profile and construction.
2 ) Ed Winfield - ( interview segment #2 - 1978 )
Here we have another segment of audio with Ed Winfield that was recently found and is now preserved in our archives. This is from the same year ( 1978 ) as the previous excerpt but does appear to be a formal interview with what we believe to be a Los Angeles area newspaper journalist. The subject matter here will be of particular interest to early 20th century auto racing historians, as Winfield gives a first hand account of the auto racing that he witnessed and was involved in as a young man during the earliest days of this sport, including some memorable commentary on board track racing.
3 ) Bob Rufi - in conversation
This audio segment features a phone interview between Doug Boyd and the early Hot Rod Pioneer Bob Rufi. Although there was no date attached to the recording when it was discovered, it is believed to be from the late 1970s. This incredibly rare sample of Rufi speaking is some of the only audio of this great innovator that is known to exist. Of particular interest here is the detail that Rufi shares with Boyd regarding his famous Chevrolet powered streamliner and the speed secrets that were hidden under its skin. As another great Hot Rod Pioneer, Alex Xydias, once said of Rufi, "He was probably the greatest hot rodder of all time." Very strong words, indeed, but well earned. Rufi was an innovator with both aerodynamics and the chemistry behind performance enhancing exotic fuels and speaks here of the latter.
4 ) Art Sparks - in conversation #1 ( 3-18-1984 )
One of the more colorful characters on the American auto racing scene during the 1st half of the 20th century would have to have been Art Sparks. A one time Hollywood stuntman, including having been a wing walker, Sparks would eventually become known as one of the most innovative and brilliant race car designers and builders of his time. Working mostly from a humble shop in his home community of Glendale, California, Art Sparks would build race winning and highly competitive cars for everything from west coast tracks like Legion Ascot to the Speedway at Indianapolis. Notoriously cantankerous and standoffish, we were shocked to discover that any audio recording of him was ever made. Once again, we have to thank Doug Boyd for doing this work during a time when it is likely that he was completely alone in his pursuit of gathering and preserving the history of hot rodding and American auto racing.