I met my friend and former driver, Mike Sweeney at the USAC/CRA Sprint Car races last Saturday night at Perris Auto Speedway, a sticky 1/2 mile clay oval an hour or so from downtown LA, at the base of the Lake Perris dam.
Mike was in town, from Crescent City California where he is now Husband, Dad and full time Surfer. He comes to SoCal a few times a year and works on a couple movies to keep up on his studio union benefits. He called and told me that he was bringing a couple guys with him that used to watch us race at Ascot Park in Gardena California.
We all met at the track and like always, the night was filled with greeting old friends, competitors and a lot of hand shaking and bench racing, some true stories and well, some kinda-sorta close to what really happened…
It was cool because the guys that Mike brought are serious So Cal surf icons: Tyler Hatzikian of Tyler Surfboards, and Jason Baffa Director of the famous surf movie Single Fin: Yellow. Note: Baffa’s latest film, One California Day, premieres July 7.
Turns out Tyler and Jason are also antique hot rod guys, so Mike said, “Hey you guys need to talk to Jim about welding products for your fabrication shop!” (it’s always nice to get referrals!)
I knew Tyler was a famous surf board shaper and owner of a retail surf shop, but I had no idea that he also digs the full custom hotrod lifestyle, Tyler drives a 1959 El Camino and a 1932 Ford High Boy roadster with a flathead Ford engine (similar to the one pictured here).
We had a good time and I’m always amazed at how many people I meet are into fabricating–