Sarge’s Commanding C6Who: Ken Sponsler
Where: Suwanee, GA
What: 2006 C6 Z06
I always dreamed of owning a Corvette, but my 27 years of Army service pay wouldn’t allow it. When I retired and started a new career, my search began. This is my second Corvette. The Z06 is awesome, thanks to headers, a new cam, and ported-and-polished heads from Vengeance Racing. She makes 705 hp at the flywheel (600 at the rear wheels). I saw a picture of the 2012 Le Mans Corvette, and loved the stripe on it. I had it reproduced at Evolution Street Machines using black with red pearl and clear over it. The interior has several upgrades, including red suede seat inserts and door-panel accents.
Survivor SharkWho: Tom Hartmann
Where: Blairstown, NJ
What: 1974 C3 coupe
I like to call this Corvette—my fifth— a “survivor rod.” It’s an original 1974 Dark Green Metallic coupe with an LS5 big-block, a four-speed, and just over 50,000 miles on the clock. I bought the car from the original owner, who’d had it since January 1974. In 1988, at 35,000 miles, he pulled the 454 and had it built by Tony Feil in South Jersey. Upgrades include ported heads with oversized valves, a Crane Cam with roller rockers, a 9.75:1 compression ratio, and a balanced rotating assembly. The car also has an Edelbrock Air Gap intake manifold with a Holley 870 carburetor, along with Hooker coated headers and a stainless Magnaflow exhaust with “X” crossover pipe. Most of the car still has its original acrylic lacquer paint, and the rearend and transmission are also original. The interior is approximately 99 percent original. I drive it several times a week when the weather is good, and it is constantly entertaining.
Lovin’ That LT-1Who: Bob Munro
Where: Kettleby, Ontario, Canada
What: 1970 C3 convertible
My love of Corvettes started years ago, when I farmed with my dad. When we relaxed with the family, the one TV show we always watched was Route 66 with Tod and Buz. As a kid, I was hooked on the “All-American Sports Car.” My first one was a 1966 Sting Ray convertible with a 350hp 327 and a removable hardtop. Later, in 1973, I purchased a new Stingray coupe with a small-block 350. These cars were my pride and joy. In 2005 I sold my 1973 and bought this LT-1–powered 1970 Stingray convertible. As they say at McDonald’s, I’m lovin’ it! She’s a real beauty. I’d be real happy to see these pictures in VETTE. We do enjoy each new edition.
Driven Then, Driven NowWho: Don and Marlene Deisch
Where: LaPine, OR
What: 1963 C2 coupe
I originally purchased this early-1963 Sting Ray upon my discharge from the USAF. I decided to travel Route 66 for the summer and experience the “Mother Road.” I returned home that fall to finish my undergraduate work, and by 1968 I needed money to pay for grad school. The ’63 was sold, and I didn’t see it again until 30 years later. That’s when I got a phone call from the car’s then-owner, who was looking for information on it. I visited the car the next spring, and stated that I’d like to buy it when he was ready to sell. Ten years later, after yearly phone calls to check on the car, I purchased it. The car needed a lot of work, and it eventually went through a frame-off restoration. It evolved into a three-year project, and at one point I wondered if I would ever get it back together. Now I enjoy being on the road in a car that holds so many memories for me. I get a lot of waves and thumbs-up from other drivers on my way to car shows.
Largely Historic and Well TraveledWho: Chuck Large
Where: Branson, MO
What: 1958 C1
Here’s our 1958 Vette. All four of my kids (two girls and two boys) drove this car in high school. The flight-line shot of me with the car was taken at Clark Air Base in the Philippines in 1972. Drive your Corvette onto the flight line, stow your gear, then go do a Mach 2 test flight in an F-4 Phantom—what a life! The car had about 500,000 miles on it when I took it to Dale’s Rod Shop in Green Forrest, Arkansas, for restoration. It had been sitting outside for about six years while I did a couple more overseas tours with the United States Air Force (from which I am now retired). The chassis shot shows the 400hp, 400ci engine that’s now in the car. It also has a Muncie four-speed, a rebuilt rearend with Positraction, and a frame that was sandblasted to bare steel, then repainted shiny black. Interior modifications include aftermarket A/C, as well as a Custom Autosound sound system with a 10-disc CD player and a SiriusXM satellite radio tuner. The water-side view was taken next to Table Rock Lake, here in Branson. The other Vette is my wife’s Black Rose Metallic ’94 coupe.
BYREQSTWho: Sonny Brown
Where: Randallstown, MD
What: 2012 C6 Grand Sport convertible
My love for the Corvette started when I was 11 years old. I was watching TV when a commercial spotlighting the new 1963 Sting Ray split-window coupe came on. I’ve been hooked ever since that day. I bought my first Corvette, a 1971 coupe, in 1976. I purchased a 1977 C3 three years later, and I still own that car today. In 2005 I brought an 2006 coupe, which I later traded for this Inferno Orange Metallic 2012 Grand Sport convertible. The license plates read “BYREQST,” in honor of the Tuskegee Airmen. I’m a member of Corvette Annapolis Club in Annapolis Maryland. Check out our website (www.corvette annapolis.com), where you can view a video of the Corvettes on the Bay event. Enjoy!
Memory MakerWho: Steve Heuer
Where: North Chicagoland, IL
What: 1980 C3
My wife and I purchased our 1980 L82 Corvette in 2003, for our 25th wedding anniversary. The car had 42,000 miles and was still in original condition. My son was only 17 at the time, but I let him drive the car once before changing my insurance to a classic-car policy that prohibited drivers under the age of 26. Nevertheless, my son and I both enjoyed the car over the years, attending events sponsored by the North Shore Corvette Club and taking it on weekend rides. Last year, when he decided to get married, I assumed that he and his bride would want a limo after the wedding. Instead, he asked if he could drive the Vette. This request meant a lot to me, so I added the Vette to the family’s auto-insurance policy so he could drive it. It was only the second time that he had driven the car (that I know of). It was worth buying the car, just for these special memories.
Torch Red Phantom C4Who: Marlin Lilly
Where: Cogan Station, PA
What: 1996 C4 coupe
While displaying my Arctic White 1995 Vette at a local show, I spotted a pristine Torch Red 1996 coupe. It only had 24,000 miles on the clock, and according to the original window sticker, it came equipped with an automatic transmission, Electronic Selective Real Time Damping, Six-Way Sport Seats, Preferred Equipment Group 1, and more. It also had LT4 badges on it. As you know, this engine/transmission combination was not offered by Chevrolet. I queried the owner, and he said that the car was ordered new from a Chevy dealer in Burkburnett, Texas. That dealership (with help from GM Performance Parts) converted the top half of the LT1 to LT4 specs. In addition, they added a 58mm Lingenfelter throttle body, short-tube headers, 30-lb/hr injectors, a 3.73 rear gear set, a tuned PCM, a Borla exhaust, plus various other enhancements. Extensive documentation confirmed his claims. I never thought that I would own such a rare Vette. However, a year later (on Memorial Day 2011), I became the new owner of this incredible car. What a ride!
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