Rydell’s Phaeton Captures Del Mar d’Elegance Crown


Wes and Vivian Rydell’s “Black Bow Tie” struck gold again this year, taking home the Goodguys 2014 March Performance Street Rod d’Elegance award during last weekend’s Goodguys 14th Meguiar’s Del Mar Nationals. The rare 1935 Chevy Standard Phaeton (one of 217 ever made) burst on the scene back in January when it won America’s Most Beautiful Roadster in Pomona.

Fabricated, assembled, finished, upholstered and painted a two-tone maroon and black by Rad Rides by Troy, the Phaeton got its start 12 years ago at Rydell’s Toy Shop in Grand Forks, North Dakota under the watchful eye of craftsman Doug Pederson. Working off a Foose Design, Pederson modified a Roadster Shop chassis and did a substantial amount of metal work on the body before shipping the car to Rad Rides by Troy where they spent nearly a year finishing the car in preparation for the 2014 show season.

The car’s understated elegance is felt throughout. The body was lengthened 2-inches and features a 3-inch longer-than-stock wheelbase. The shortened grill was reclined by “pulling out” the bottom and the windshield posts have been laid back 2.5-inches. It rides on Heidt’s IFS and IRS suspension. The engine is a 383 Chevy Ram Jet with EFI, modified to look like it features original 1957 Rochester injection.

The hind end is as regal as it comes with the aesthetically-pleasing luggage rack holding a period perfect metal travel box in matching paint. A nickel plated gas cap and trim pieces abound. The art-decco red leather interior was stitched by Adam at Rad Rides as was the black canvas top, which took hundreds of hours to finesse and “get right.”

Mike Curtis of Curtis Speed made the period perfect wheels featuring CNC-milled stock-looking trim rings (with gold leaf inlets) and stock ’33 Chevy hubcaps.

Goodguys members and enthusiasts will surely remember Rydell’s past Foose-designed cars including the “Grand Master” ’35 Chevy (2002 Ridler winner and Goodguys Street Rod of the Year) as well as his Goodguys 2007 Custom Rod of the Year-winning ’54 Chevy Bel Air.

Fellow d’Elegance Finalists include Dave Hall, Phoenix, AZ (1939 Ford), Jack LoPresti, Big River, CA (1935 Chevy), Rocky & Sherry Nash, Murrieta, CA (1935 Ford), and Janeen Drinkard, Leander TX (1940) Chevy

-Wes & Vivian Rydell accept the Street Rod d'Elegance award from Goodguys' Harry Daviess

-Wes & Vivian Rydell accept the Street Rod d’Elegance award from Goodguys’ Harry Daviess

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