GIFT HORSE
Car Craft|March 2020
Byron Tudor Surely Made the Most of What Started Out as a Freebie
Eric English

To hear owner Byron Tudor tell it, he hasn’t traditionally been a Mustang sort of guy. In that regard he resembles a multitude of car enthusiasts who, whether they love it or hate it, have simply never owned an example of Ford’s legendary Ponycar. Nevertheless, credit Byron with capitalizing on a good thing when it came his way.

The good thing we speak of is the ’67 coupe that was given to Byron by his girlfriend’s sister, Holly. Holly had driven the plain white coupe for a number of years before parking it in the late ’90s due to its declining condition and concerns regarding reliability. After having it sit in her garage for nearly 20 years and concluding she was unlikely to get it back on the road, Holly offered it to Byron—free of charge. It was important to Holly that her Mustang go to a good home. Obviously Byron was happy to have the super-solid but tired ’67 dropped in his lap, but what to do with it? Coincidentally, Byron had known Craig Wick for a few years; the two actually being involved in go-kart racing in the Pacific Northwest. Byron also knew Wick to be the owner of Wicked Fabrication in Auburn, Washington, one of the area’s premier builders of custom and modified cars. Before long, Byron had turned his Mustang over to Wick for a full-tilt build for the Mustang of his dreams.

Car Craft is primarily oriented to the hands-on crowd, but before you throw stones at a “checkbook car” such as Byron’s, know that Byron is a hardworking blue-collar guy in the latter part of his career as an electrician at a large aircraft manufacturer. His vision for his dream car was well beyond his personal abilities, but with business booming in the aircraft industry, he did have the opportunity to work massive amounts of overtime in order to fund a professional build.

Over a couple of years that’s exactly what Byron did, and we consider his hard work no less exemplary than if he’d built the car himself. Another fact is that relatively few examples of functioning Coyote swaps exist, and upon seeing Byron’s example, we dove at the opportunity to discover more about how it came to be—our own two Coyote projects currently a technical focus for Car Craft’s Ford

gearheads, so pay attention, folks! To feature a top-quality vintage ride with Coyote power brings the theme full circle, for this is an engine too good to leave to the “late models.”

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