hot rods and warbirds

Since the very beginning of hot rodding, there have been strong ties between aviation and automotive innovations. And it's not just about the mechanical aspect. Many of the pioneers in hot rod culture had earned their skills being fighter pilots or airplane mechanics during WW2. Skills that would later prove to be helpful as well on dry lake beds or drag strips. Every other year, the event »Motel Movie« celebrates the close connection between raceway and runway. It's held at the airport of Prangins, a small village half an hour away from Geneva, Switzerland, providing for a laid-back backdrop to machines once built to dominate both air and asphalt.

The Cheaters from Geneva showed up with several traditional hot rods ranging from deuce roadsters to model A based builds.

This impressive torpedo bomber is a Grumman Avenger. Seeing it in action was a memorable experience.

Cheater Pete's 1932 roadster is now powered by a 365 cu.in. Cadillac engine.

Xav brought his early 60s style 8BA flathead powered 1930 roadster.

1964 was a good year for Chevrolet.

The road to Prangins.

My favorite car of the show was of course Momo's soon to be finished 1958 Chevrolet Impala »The Watson«. Must be seen to be believed.

Under the hood is a tri-power equipped 383 small block.

The taillight treatment rules. What a great idea!

Some details of Peter's roadster.

Laurent's 1932 flathead equipped roadster.

Beer run!

Since we're in the french speaking part of Switzerland, one of the essential daily routines is the Apéro!

It usually consists of a glass of wine (or two) accompanied by some snacks like local cheese and ham.

What better than an Apéro with some vintage aircraft action going on!

Vince and his family drove all the way from the Valais. And not just for the Apéro.

Laurent seems happy for a reason.

The setting sun means the golden hour is approaching quickly.

What a great show with wonderful people and an amazing setting.

We'll be back.


night moves

I awoke last night to the sound of thunder
How far off I sat and wondered
Started humming a song from 1962
Ain't it funny how the night moves
When you just don't seem to have as much to lose
Strange how the night moves
With autumn closing in

Bob Seger


an immortal morning

Once upon a time, there was an era when hot rods were actual means of transportation. They got asphalt under their wheels, and sometimes even potholes or gravel roads. Not just trailer beds, manicured fairgrounds or epoxy coated garage floors. To the Branch family, that era never ended.

How about a setting like this when getting your Saturday morning coffee.

Looking forward to many more happy miles.

Living in Southern California does have its benefits. These photos were taken in early January.

Tom Branch's Studebaker-powered roadster seems like it's been around forever.

Still one of my favorite deuces.

Frank Barone's heavily chanelled and flathead equipped roadster could have just rolled out of an early 1950s hot rod magazine.

A sneak peek into Chris Casny's mindblowing model A roadster.


a night at the shop

Hot rods, grinders and cigarettes. Or just another lazy tuesday night at a shop in central Switzerland.