The Barracuda was carefully thrown together in a matter of nine months and was ready to put on its game face for the Young Guns Class. His hard work paid off in dividends he couldn't have imagined as he took first place in the inaugural Young Guns Class. It has been eight years since that day, and he's maintained the car with meticulous precision all while enjoying 20,000 miles of open road travel.
The Orrs weren't done. There was still another gearhead in the family chomping at the bit to get a car going for herself, Gayle. Her '69 Sport Satellite wasn't always so drop-dead-gorgeous. Its humble beginnings started with destroyed frame rails, rusted floors, a junk automatic, and a strong-running 318. Inside, the original interior had been replaced with plush red velvet and seats from a Chrysler LeBaron. "My boyfriend and I spent our evenings and weekends disassembling the car only to find more and more things that were going to need work."
After they had the interior apart, Gayle started bodywork. "My mom and dad showed me the ins and outs of bodywork and I soon found out that there wasn't anything easy or clean about it." Removing the layers of paint revealed that the, now black, car was originally gold and that there was at least six different coats of paint and a gallon or two of body putty. The body needed a lot of work thanks to an abundance of rust, and three of the four frame rails needed to be replaced. "The frame rails are obviously a very crucial part of the restoration, so I left that up the expert, my dad. While he was doing that, I used the plasma cutter to cut the floors out, and that was a lot of fun." The year 2005 mostly consisted of Gayle and her family welding, applying body putty, and sanding.
When the 2006 Mopar Nationals rolled around, her car still wasn't done, which depressed her. "I found all the inspiration I needed when I stopped by the YearOne booth where they had their '69 "Red Runner" convertible on display, complete with billboard side stripes. It was like nothing I had ever seen and I couldn't keep my eyes off it. I couldn't leave the poor guys at YearOne alone." She was amazed that her car had that much potential, and began work on the Satellite as soon as they returned home, even though her dad had to begin the fall harvest. 2007 was the year of sandblasting, painting, more bodywork, and finally the drivetrain buildup. While the adequate 318 was healthy, it wasn't a big block. The Orrs had a spare 440 lying around the barn and took it to their local machine shop to be bored .030-inch over and threw in some stroker goodies from 440source.com. The final result was a 500-horse 505 Wedge, worthy of the billboard callouts on the rear fenders.
The car was ready for the 2008 Mopar NATS, and Gayle scrupulously dusted the car off and proudly displayed her longtime project that she cut-up, modified, and restored with the help of her family. It was enough to catch our attention. Sitting in her trunk was a photo book showing all the curious show-goers that her restoration was an accomplishment against the odds. (Editor's Note: We even teased her a little about the "borrowed" Young Guns banner from the previous year that was in some of the construction pictures.) It took first place in the Mopar Muscle Young Guns modified class and best in class. Something her younger brother, Gregg, had been rewarded with seven years before. Sadly, Gregg wasn't on hand for his sister's success as he was busy graduating from WyoTech technical school.
We ran into the two 25-year-old Orrs again at the 2009 NATS and they were both very happy and sad at the same time. It was the last year they could compete in the class as the rules stipulate that you must be 16-25. With both rides in the same place at the same time it only made sense to get them captured together.