"Our theme was heavily based on our build style," explained Sparman. "Our goal was to integrate all aspects of the Corvette—new and old—inside and out. The car was a blend of a '69, a new ZR1, a mid-'70s classic, and what we thought a Corvette designer would have envisioned. We knew the All-Stars had a wild build style. With a focus on styling, performance, and overall integration, our goal was to beat them at our game, not theirs."
As the clock neared zero, both teams were scrambling to complete their last-minute touches. At the 00:00 mark, the workers stepped away from their cars to face the jury.
Both cars smoked their tires easily and handled the slalom course well, but it was clear that a few final details of the All-Stars car were giving the judges pause. The telescopic steering column hadn't been repaired, so it kept moving in and out as they drove. The seat mechanism was also broken, so the seat slid forward and back in rhythm with the car's braking and acceleration.
It was going to be interesting to see if the exterior "wow" factor and fabrication work of the All-Stars' car would tip the balance, or if the design flow of the Challengers' car would give it the upper hand.
In George Barris' words, "The All-Stars' car was a wild design; however it was out of proportion with the character of what a Corvette should look like." In reference to the Challengers' car, he added, "Although not wild in design, it was unique and enjoyable, and the workmanship was...very nice."
Hours later, the judges' votes were tallied.
In true warrior fashion, someone had to win, and someone had to lose. Both teams built the best C3 Corvette they could in only 72 hours, working in a shop that was not their own, and on a car model that might not have been their specialty. As the cameras rolled and the envelope was opened, every team member stood at attention. Slowly the words were spoken: "And the winner is Gearhead Garage." The Challengers had prevailed, knocking off their heavily favored opponents and netting themselves a pair of cool custom Vettes in the process.