Then there was the fifth configuration where the four-speed transmission and the Dana 60 rearend were added to the mix. This fifth and final configuration is the one Jim Welch decided to duplicate when he took on the responsibility of putting the car back to its "as raced" state.
Unlike other race cars that have been put back together, this car retains the bulk of its original body parts, many of its original mechanical pieces, and came with several file drawers full of documentation that Lee kept over the years. It is without question one of the most documented race cars to ever be restored. The paper trail is so meticulously detailed you can literally trace the car's mechanical and on-track history from the time Lee picked it up in Detroit until the day he sold it in late 1966.
Over the years from 1966 till 2004, there were seven owners that held the car for periods of time, but in the end it was Jim Welch who finally assembled the right team to finish the project. More incredible is the fact this team put this rare piece of history back together in ten short months. Plans are to take it out and share it with the public this coming season, so keep an eye out for it.
OwnersOriginal owner-Lee Smith, Moline, ILSecond owner-Len Peterson, Moline, ILThird owner-Al Close, Moline, ILFourth owners-Ken Snyder and Larry Brinkman, Rockford, ILFifth owner-Tolley, Fort Dodge, IASixth owner-Mike Guffey, Hartford City, INSeventh owner-Eric Lindberg, Elk River, MNEighth owner-Jim Welch, Wayne, IL (2004 to present)