One of the biggest and constant influences in Mike's life is his Uncle Ronnie. He has a lust for life and always has a positive attitude in all that he does. Watching him race his hot rod at 84 years, with his Pit Crew Chief, (and wife) Helen, has kept Mike inspired and enthusiastic. Uncle Ronnie is the oldest drag racer in Canada and has appeared on the Discovery Channel with his car at Grand Bend Racetrack. He is also a long standing member of the Road Mates Car club.
Billy and Mike have been on many a road trip to save a Beaumont or Chevelle. Billy is the finest Canadian Picker around! He has a passion for a classic car like no other. Billy also is the proud owner of a 1970 Acadian rare Canadian only car - RED of course!
This car has been in Mike's life the longest by far!. Restoring his grandparent's Lincoln was a labour of love. To this day the Lincoln is a head turner and award winner, but the sentimental value and pride that Mike has for this car cannot be measured.
Sunnydale Performance Owner Mike is a Diesel mechanic and Master Auto Mechanic. Mike has been rescuing Beaumonts and restoring them for over 28 years. Mike has a passion for all cars but especially for Acadian/Beaumonts.
The love of a truly different Canadian built car, started more than 20 years ago, when my best friend bought a '66 Beaumont Custom in the late '80s. It wasn't long after that that I found myself a '67 Beaumont Custom. This was originally an 6 cylinder car, one of 833 made with a bucket seat and console A51 package. I always had the need for speed and power but this engine wasn't going to cut it, lol. My best friend just happened to come across a Chevy Caprice that had a 427 under it's hood.
Well it didn't take long before that motor came out and was torn down and rebuilt to replicate the '67 L72 Cheetah motor pushing more than 500 HP with a pile of performance parts from GM. I had a 12 volt Posi and rebuilt it with 410 gear setup to make everything hook up under it's chassis, with some hidden suspension upgrades. To make this motor breathe, a set of 2 1/8" hooker headers and 3" flow master pipes and mufflers were installed. The car was together but needed to have her body finished properly. A full frame-off restoration was started a couple years later. Time passed and days turned into years, but this project never stopped. I would say it evolved as it took a lot of time to find all the right pieces to make this Custom Beaumont into the ultimately rare Cheetah. Over the years of love and passion for the Cheetah/Beaumont, I learned more and more about it's history and origin. While doing my research I found that information was next to impossible to find since GM never put out much information on Beaumonts. However, I discovered that there was a Canadian '67 Beaumont SD 396 and a special edition 427 Cheetah version. These cars pre dated the Yenkos, Danas, and motion cars by a full year and were available through Conroy Pontiac from 1966 to 1969.
Conroy Pontiac started the Cheetah conversions with the Beaumont SD model and added numerous heavy duty parts to this already highly optioned car. Conroy Pontiac upgraded these Canadian Ponchos to either 375 HP using various speed components from GM Canada's parts bins, or, installed 450 to 500 HP L72 big block 427 for guys like myself that have a hunger for speed and power. It has been said that as few as ten L72, 427 were made.
At this point I knew what I was building would be my version of one of the rarest Canadian built cars.
20 years have passed and the evolution of my car has now come to it's shining glory and was shown at Performance World at Toronto's International Centre on March 11-13, 2011. I've enjoyed many a great summers driving my Cheetah and have had many good things said about this rare Canadian car. This Car has appeared on the internet and has taken many awards. It satisfies my need for speed and my love for the truly different Canadian hybrid.