Mark Houlahan
Brand Manager, Mustang Monthly
July 29, 2011
Photos By: John Machaqueiro

"I asked for paint for a Christmas present," Anthony joked. When the car was ready to be painted, it went back to G&A where Mike did the majority of the spray work, while Anthony and Jeff helped prep and assemble the car. They worked Friday evening through Sunday afternoon so as to not be in the way of G&A's regular working hours. Anthony's friend, Mark Spiro, runs Futureline Auto Tops, a nearby trim shop, and he gave Tony ideas for interior upgrades and made custom floor mats for the SportsRoof. He also showed Anthony how to make trunk boards to enclose the trunk area.

It took another six months to reassemble the car and then Anthony went to his first show in the spring of 2003. Anthony still goes to that show to this day.

"Every year, someone brings a new build to the show and it gets mobbed by people. That year it was us who were mobbed by people," Anthony said. He drove the SportsRoof like this into the winter of 2005, when he went to his first indoor car show.

"After seeing all the really cool cars at the indoor show, it made me think, 'I need to get my stuff together.' I called Jeff and said, 'We're tearing the car apart,'" Anthony says about how the second build came to be. By then, Anthony had his own shop tied to his business and started tearing the Mustang down again, smoothing the bottom of the car so Jeff could paint it to look as nice as the top side.

Anthony ripped out every interior panel and sent them to Mark at Futureline for custom suede and leather trimming. Having more mechanical knowledge under his belt by this time, Anthony upgraded the engine, added a NOS nitrous system, and even upgraded the suspension (which was sent out to be chrome plated). Kurt Mezger of Vintage Performance specializes in VWs, but Anthony tells us he is one of the best TIG welders he has ever met.

"I asked him if he could fabricate a full stainless steel exhaust system for the car," Anthony states. Kurt came through with a complete stainless steel exhaust system that took Anthony 12 hours to polish into a show-winning masterpiece.

Since then, Anthony has shown the SportsRoof on the ISCA show circuit for two years, plus lots of outdoor shows, and has a room full of awards and a great many friends because of the build. Rick Schafer, Anthony's sounding board for ideas, has been in the hobby for decades and was a big help with the build.

"I'd ask Rick how to make my brake lines look better or what to do with some wiring, and he always had a winning idea," Anthony said of his friend. Lynn at K&G Speed helped with special ordering parts, fittings, hoses, and so on, while Bob Steelman helped him with cleaning, driving duties, and more.

"Bob has just always been there to help out, having a lot of fun with the car," Anthony says. The funny thing is that Anthony is not really a polish and shine guy, and has grown into more of a technical/fab guy. Good thing he has Pamela, his girlfriend, with him at shows, as she is very detail oriented and she loves to take care of those details at the shows that keep the SportsRoof looking its best.

"I never thought we'd be where we are now with all the awards, being in a car magazine, and so on. We're just a bunch of car guys having fun in the garage, but I couldn't have done it without the moral support, either of my family or long-time friends like Tom and Caveman," Anthony exclaimed.

Anthony has certainly enjoyed the car, but when we asked him what was next for the Chrome Yellow Mustang, we weren't surprised in the least when he suggested a third build might be in the future. Yes, even though he's happy with the car, he's considering changing the nitrous for a turbo and possibly a repaint. Whatever the end result will be of the third build, we know it's been a long time coming.

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