Nostalgia Funny Cars are wonderful things. One look at today’s aerodynamic, bar-of-soap shapes will have you looking at cars like the USA-1 Camaro or the Super Nova and wondering just what the hell happened over the course of fifty years. Funny cars used to have character. They used to actually look like the actual street-going car. Those are the kinds of floppers we dig…the ones where the mold was made the second a brand new car left the lot. At the Holley Hot Rod Reunion, you will always find a flopper to fit your style, whether it be a 1973 Pontiac Grand Am or a later 1960s Corvair body. (Don’t worry, you’ll see them in a gallery soon.) Normally, underneath the shell you’ll find pretty much identical specs: a front-engined rail chassis like a Logghe, a seat for the mental patient who is ready to uncork thousands of horsepower for a laugh, and usually somewhere in the middle, you’ll find a Chrysler Hemi. It’s not a bad choice for any kind of monster drag car…in fact, history says that it’s a pretty solid bet. But finding a big-cube Buick powerplant huffing nitro is like hitting the lottery, and finding that mill in a funny car with a Buick body on top of it is finding the needle in the haystack the moment you stick your hand into the bale of hay. In fact, there’s only one car where you’ll find it: “Ingénue’, a 1967 Buick Skylark GS400-bodied flopper. The body, one of two 1967 Buick shells, was molded by Ron Pellegrini from Fiberglass Limited (reportedly from a car borrowed from a dealership) and was mated to a Logghe-copy chassis. The whole machine was built by Jerry Lipori and Steve Malise at Brooklyn Speed and Machine, and the car was run under three drivers during it’s heyday: Ralph Landolfini, “Rapid Red” Lang, and Bruce Bohen.
The Buick was restored a few years back and has made the trip out to Bowling Green pretty often. And apparently, Uncle Tony has some history with this one-of-a-kind machine. Hit play to learn more: