Ex-Drag Car: 1957 Corvette

A car’s past can have a profound impact on its value, especially if it had important or interesting race history. You would think with all of today’s technology, finding that history would be easy, but that isn’t always the case. A friend of reader Mike C recently found this 1957 Corvette drag car and asked him to tackle rebuilding the car. Mike is in need of our help with tracking down its history.

The car has obviously been parked in this field with the Jaguar behind it for many years. Mike’s friend is in the process of buying the car and is trying to decide what direction to take the car. They have yet to find out much on this car’s background, just that it was raced in the NHRA sometime in the ’60s.

The side of the car wears the text BM/SP and Martin & Hulford on the side. BM/SP was the racing class it ran in. This class ran from the mid to late ’60s for modified sports cars, with B class cars having an engine size to weight ratio of 7.5 to 9.99 pounds per cubic inch. We would assume that Martin & Hulford was the team or the drivers that raced it.

This Corvette will need a lot of work to get it back on the street or the track, but it will be well worth the effort. We will be interested to see what direct they decide to take this car, as it would look awesome with the paint and body left as is. Hopefully they can find out how this car was originally set up, as BM/SP was a very competitive class and this car may have had some impressive modifications performed to compete.

Mike and his friend need our help tracking down the history of this Vette, so if anyone remembers seeing it at their local drag strip in the ’60s, please let us know. We are sure Mike would appreciate it. We would like to thank him for sharing this amazing find with us and we wish him the best of luck with his research.

Comments

  1. scott

    where it was found should give a hint , if we knew that???..

    • Mike Clayton

      Here is the latest on the Corvette. Apparently the gentleman that was going to sell the car to my friend did not have permission to do so. Well, the owner called the sheriff’s department, and, well, to make a long story short, the car is now in an impound yard awaiting it’s fate. To bad such a wonderful piece of racing history is going to end up who knows where. Hopefully it will end up in the hands of someone who will appreciate and respect it’s racing past, and give it the much deserved second chance it has earned for a life on the dragstrip.

  2. erikj

    COOOOOOOOOOOOOL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  3. Boxer

    Awesome find.

  4. Spitbob

    I want the Jag behind it? Is it for sale?

  5. fiat128

    Ask the guys on the HAMB, it should take them about 1.7 seconds to not only tell you the history but provide photos of the car racing back in the day and to trace down the original owner, who just happens to have all the missing parts back in his garage.

    PS: That’s not really a joke.

  6. Barn Finds

    Mike did not mention anything about the location or the Jaguar when he contacted us. Perhaps he will chime in shortly and let us know.

    • Clark Miller

      I think many of us would be interested in the Jag and location…could you post? Thanks!

    • scot c

      ~ if he hasn’t closed the deal yet he’d better keep the specific location a secret. someone’s vulture sense is tingling.
      it’s good to see the mock mini scoops on tops of the fenders have been discarded.

  7. Paul

    Geez it isn’t bad enough to let an old Corvette wither in weeds, but a 120 coupe is just a horrid site.

  8. Tony

    cool.

  9. mikey

    I don’t care for Corvettes……….but, I’m diggin’ that Jag in back ground. Wait! that Jag needs ever-e-thing…………forget it. By them cheaper done. I just lost my desire.

  10. Albert J Lopez

    I am not Positive but I think I saw it in an old Hot Rod Magazine, or Popular Mechanics, late 50’s or Early 60’s you might be able to find those editions on ebay I think it was a Feature car, But again don’t hold me to it, it might have been one that looked like it.

  11. Joseph Geisler

    I owned this car from 1965-68. Origionally (on the drag strip) the hood was sheetmetal over a conduit frame. The car was Maroon in color and belonged to a Nixa, Mo. barber. I sold the car to Darrell Stineman (sp?) in 1968. Is this car for sale or trade? I would like to talk to you about trading a nice hot rod for the car. I have some photos of it on the strip and in the world of wheels. I am the one who painted it orange. It left my garage in that color. It ran a 283 in 65, A 327 in 64 and again in 1967-8. If this car is not too far from Mo where it was built. Unless there were 2 of them… which, by the way DOES happen! Someone sees the car and replicates the design elsewhere. Get a hold of me as I just ran an ad looking for it on HAMB and on the Corvette Blog this past month!

    • Mike C.

      Joseph,
      I have the car posted on HAMB also. Go there and find it. Shoot me a pm there. I would like to talk to you.
      Mike

      • Barn Finds

        Looks like you might have found a piece of the puzzle…

    • Joe Geisler

      I have found one photo of the car from 1966. It was taken at the World of wheels car show in Springfield Mo. I will gladly show it here. This was prior to the turn signal and front bumper modification. Darryll Stineman (sp?) moved the car and himself after his wife divorced him to the west coast. I have been wondering about the car for many years. It MAY NOT be the same car! The car we put a ford straight axle under the front end if it is. It was running a Enderly injection system on a 327 SBC. I am in doubt if this is the same car now as the race hood was metal over EMT conduit. Although I put a original hood off of a 56 on the car after it’s race days were over. Also if this car has the STOCK front suspension under it then it is NOT the same car. I welded up the push bar mount on the rear where we push started it. That was where I thought it could be the same car as most people do NOT add that. We ran gas class. The car turned a respectable low 11’s. (11.13). After I was done racing it I reinstalled the windshield from a 58 corvette and the door bars too. I also notice that the rollcage is gone on this car so it may not be the same car. The car was maroon when I got it and TOTALLY stripped! No gauges, no Corvette seats, No top, no gauges, a Metal hood with that same stupid scoop! All of the parts I had went with the car and the new owner told me he was going to remove everything and race it again. ??? I have one photo of it leaving my house on a trailer being pulled by a 58 Thunderbird. I heard a couple of years later when I returned from Florida where I had moved for employment the Darrill had gone west after his wife kept the house and he kept the 57 Corvette… from her! I am on the HAMB as autoworldcorp2000. There are albums there and the car is shown in one photo. I do have a few others. One of it racing in the Maroon state at the starting line w/green light! And one of it after I was trying to fix it up for the street after buying a 1958 wrecked Corvette from an auto salvage in Joplin, Mo.

      • Joe Geisler

        Another little bit of info! I complete stripped the car of it’s maroon paint using stripper. Took me several days to do this. The car was originally white. The Maroon was enamel. I block sanded it straight and it was in black primer for months. I then painted it the bright orange color it is showing thru the yellow. It was NOT the 57 Corvette stock orange/ buff cove! I painted it all orange. I never had the original grill either. The turn signals I put on the car were just running lights for a std trailer as they looked close. He did not like them and removed the front bumpers and those lights. That is why I thought it was my old car!!! When looking at the photos those things POPPED out to me. So that is the ONLY reason I replied on the car. Sorry if it is not the same car… then it would be my mistake. If this car was running sportsman then it would have the stock front suspension I would think? I ran sportsman with MANY of my Corvettes that I drag raced back in the 60’s and 70’s. This would be the only one I had the straight axle under! He could have also removed it too!!

  12. Rick

    That would look awesome setup for drag just like it is. Very cool.

  13. Mike C.

    Hi Everyone,
    Thanks for posting the car, greatly appreciated!! Can’t believe I forgot to post the location. The car is located in Northern California. Thanks for all the input, it is greatly appreciated.

  14. Scott Sperka

    Hi, Mike C. Great car & very exciting. I have access to the TRUE story of this car. Send me a PM and I will put you in touch with the correct person.

  15. Scott Sperka

    Mr. Hulford is my resource, btw.

    • James Arrington

      Please contact me ….we could have an interesting conversation

  16. Joseph Geisler

    Mike,
    You can pm me at autoworldcorp2000@yahoo.com. I have been looking for the old photos all morning. Not a lot of luck found a few. May not be the same car. ??? Mine was a gasser in the early 60’s and ran in Kansas and Ozark Dragway. It had no windshield when I bought it. Also no seats, no top, and a push bar on the rear as your shows. I do have a photo of it after my purchase and I stripped off the Maroon paint and metal hood with the silly small scoop on it! I bought an interior and rag top from a wrecked 1960 red Corvette at an autosalvage in Joplin. also I found a hood for the 57 from a wrecked 56. When I traded an old 34 Dodge coupe for the car it had been running gas. My coupe also ran gas and altered. If this is the same car we had installed a 1947 Straight axle under it. It was bolted in using the same mounting holes of the stock front crossmember. It left here with that front axle under the car. It could have been changed back if someone had a 51-54 Chevy front end. There may be signs of the wish bone mounts on each side of the frame near the bell housing. Traction bars were left on the rear under the springs. Darrel Stineman got devorced here and could have moved to Calif. I moved to Fla. We have never heard from each other again. I tried looking him up. I sold him a few Corvettes back in the 60’s. Again may NOT be the same car but as it looks in your pictures it brought back immediate memories!! I bought it stripped like in those photos. But again it left here with a lot of stuff I had found and put back onto the car. I wanted it to LOOK like a Corvette and not a bare Gasser. After I stripped it down I painted it black primer. Blocked it all out and sprayed it an Orange, It was orange and NOT the Corvette red! The color of your hot rods and gassers of the period. If it is not my old car then thanks for your photos as they brought me back to a time and the reason I have been looking for a 62 or a 57 styled Corvette. I too will put it back like the drag racer it was for me. With windshield and I want a hard top though on it. I did then but they were very hard to find even back then and expensive. Still are.
    Joe

    • keith

      hello joe . i own the corvette i got the 327 / 283 plus a removable hard top an 75% of the parts to put it back together the photos where taken by a friend on the ranch in penyrn ca pink in hand would like to sale 916 768 5575

  17. Gary Doyle

    You guys dropped the ball big time – – that Jag is, from the looks, a Drophead 140 coupe from the 50’s like the XK 120 and 140 roadsters body only with a roof . Coupes are rarer than the roadsters – – these cars are just one of the nicest body styles ever made that most Jag enthusiasts drool over – – someone please pass me a napkin !! I currently run a blown 78 fiberglass bowtie but if I hit the lottery I’d seriously be after one of these XKs.

  18. oldskydog

    I know this car. I tried to buy it and a damaged 62 from the owner John F******* back in the 80’s when I lived in Roseville, Ca. He also had a 59, but it got burned up in a grass fire that his wife/crazy girlfriend started according to what he told me.There was nothing left but the rolling chassis of the 59.
    He never would commit to a price, but told me he needed a new back window glass for his Jag coupe. In the interests of keeping the door open, I located a back window and dropped it off at his place (rather secluded 12 acres) while he was not home. I never heard from him and gave up trying to contact him. I hate to think what it will go for now. BTW, the car was supposed to be a 56, not 57, but I don’t remember if I verified the VIN tag or not.

  19. FriendsofJohnF

    This corvette was stolen by the individual claiming to own it. It has since been recovered, minus some of the items he also stole (hard top and other parts). The Jag in the background and one other Jag, also stolen and sold, not yet recovered. If anyone has any information on the items still missing, we would be very grateful to hear from you. This has been devastating to the rightful owner who was robbed of MANY other items and had his home destroyed by fire, trying to cover up just how much had been stolen.

    • Jesse Jesse

      This is terrible news. We hope the items can be recovered. If anyone has any information about this, please report it to the authorities.

  20. Joe Geisler

    Well I just FINALLY reread the whole post!!! Took me LONG enough!!! 311 days! I’m NOT one to do this Facebook stuff! Maybe I should get over it and into doing it! ?? What front suspension is under that car? Will the owner who ever you ARE please get a hold of me. Please do NOT let this thing end up in impound fees and scrapped! If it is my old car I would like a chance at it. I am 69 now and want to put it back into the street trim as the old gasser. I own a hot rod shop and have lots of cars! Sorry, I do not have any of them stolen nor do I want one that way! Sorry to have heard that about the 57 Corvette. But in another way GLAD to have read that they caught the fella!!!! That is GREAT news. I am sure Darrill sold the car sometime from the 1968 when I sold it to him. Actually it was a trade. I believe that he might be dead as I have tried to find him for 3-4 years now without any success. I am still looking for one, like this, that I can put back together as the old gasser. If anyone knows of one or a 61-2. Please let me know if you’d be able to trade for a better or nicer car. (No Corvettes). 22- 35 Fords mainly here in house. Many old BARN FINDS are here. But not for show… yet.

  21. FriendsofJohnF

    It is so disappointing to know that someone purchased stolen items, he didn’t know it at the time, but he knows it now and he is not stepping up to return the items to the rightful owner. The rightful owner being 83, with Parkinson’s, has been completely devastated by all that was stolen and the destruction of his home by arson. If he would come forward not only would he recover the money he spent and has put into the items, just as he is with the ONE item that has been recovered, he would also help in the case against the thief. He knows things that can help the DA’s office. Please do the right thing!!! Don’t let this dirt bag get away with all he did to a defenseless elderly man that worked hard for his belongings. (Recovered items – 1-Corvette and 1-Indian)(Still missing – 2-Jags and 2-Vincents plus many, many other items; car parts, motorcycle parts, antiques…)

    • rick Prokopchuk

      Indeed true FOJF…indeed true

    • scot

      ~ agree completely! buyer; please come forward in the name of truth and justice. prosecute and jail the thief. we must be vigilant against the rip-offs.

  22. Alan (Michigan)

    Wow.
    I just read this story, via the photo link from the Peter Max collection of 36 Vettes which was recently purchased. The last post here was over a year ago. I certainly hope that the situation has been tipped in favor of the rightful owner of this and all else that was stolen. And, that the perpetrator/criminal is behind bars, to be there for a long time.

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