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4.5.06. Reviving the Ace Café has been a great move for everyone involved in the automotive/bike scene, and undoubtedly for its enthusiastic owners, as well. The Ace not only provides a great focal point for car clubs and petrol heads in the London area, but also enjoys its own special mystique as an established part of UK “rocker” folklore. Quite apart from the cars and motorcycles, though, it’s an interesting place to visit in its own right.
After what has seemed like an overly long and grey winter here in the UK, it should perhaps have come as no surprise that the Executioners Spring Riot Hot Rod Night, on Wednesday, May 4, was bursting at the seams with cars and people, all keen to blow away the cobwebs and either show off, or ogle, automotive projects that had been taking shape in garages around the country during the last six months – or more, in some cases.
This Model A with a Model B grille and hood grafted on was new to us. Solid red paint, ARE wheels and button pleated interior gave it a great '60s look
Kevin Foster was 'running in' his new coupe and enjoying every minute of it
Undoubtedly, the pleasant evening, which seemed to have just a hint of early summer warmth about it, brought people out in their droves. Add in a “take-no-prisoners” rockabilly band, an enthusiastic audience of car and bike nuts and the sound of powerful V8s straining at the leash, and you had the recipe for a heady “cocktail” capable of keeping visitors entertained for hours.
Chopped '32 with nostalgic wheel combination and great stance, drew admiring glances
Some of the cars present had been seen earlier in the year, at the Xtreme Wheels Show or the AACI Spring Nationals, but several new machines also appeared at the Ace. Here’s our largely pictorial report on a memorable event, which brought out hot rods, cool customs, beautiful classics and even a few drag cars. If this was a harbinger of automotive spring, then UK fans of the American car scene could be in for quite a summer.
60s Vette had real menace with blown motor and tubbed rear, while '32 roadster was a beautifully executed throwback to the 60s
This '58 Impala (first spotted at the AACI Spring Nationals) visibly glowed in the evening sunlight. With perfect paint and brightwork, plus an equally inspiring interior, this car is every inch a winner
1965 Mustang Fastback looked like it could have been a genuine Shelby GT350 although we couldn't find the owner to verify it
You don't tend to come up with this model when you think of a hot rod Anglia, but this version was neatly done with a 5.9 litre V8 and a heavily narrowed rear end. Full roll cage suggests this car will see some serious action
There were plenty of customised bikes at the Ace, but none quite as radical as this pedal powered version
Corvette Grand Sport replicas are a rare sight in the UK
Lovely attention to detail in Sue Manner's Model A pick-up. By 9pm, every inch of tarmac in the car park had been filled
Two radically different coupes built to two equally radical budgets, yet both strong in visual appeal
This freshly-built Fad T put in an appearance - seen here sandwiched between two pick-ups
The Ace really is Ace - though a bigger car park would make it even better