Modesto Century Toppers

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A Century Toppers plaque from 1948.
Roy Dyson's 1934 Ford Sedan, Guy Mencaccy's 1932 Ford 5-Window Coupe and Jon Enberg's 1940 Ford Coupe as they appeared in late 1954. Photo from the Jon Enberg collection, provided by Steve Corgiat.
Gene Winfield's 1927 Ford Model T Roadster of Modesto, California. Gene was a member of the Modesto Century Toppers when he bought the car. After buying it, he rebuilt it using a Z-ed Model A frame. The build was completed in time for the 1950 National Roadster Show in Oakland, California.
Eugene Pereira's 1929 Ford Model A Roadster, was finished in 1949.
Ted Williams' 1934 Ford 5-Window Coupe. After returning from WWII, Ted moved to Modesto. Shortly thereafter he joined the Modesto Century Toppers car club.
Lew Thompson's 1932 Ford Roadster of Modesto, California. Lew's roadster was originally hot rodded in the Los Angeles area in the 1940s. In 1948 Gene Winfield reworked the car at Winfield Custom Shop for current owner Joe Cardoza. Joe sold the car to Modesto Century Toppers member Lew Thompson. Circa 1960 Joe sold the roadster to fellow Modesto Century Toppers member Peter Hischier, who gave it a Candy Apple Red paint job. Circa 1963 Peter had Gene Winfield rework the car and give it a black paint job. This incarnation did also feature a fully chromed undercarriage.

The Modesto Century Toppers is a car club formed in Modesto, California in 1946. In 1946 Charlie Bell got together with some friends to form a club. After kicking around some names, someone suggested Century Toppers as the name for the club. As most of the club members were bringing their cars to Gene Winfield for custom work, Gene was voted the first president of the Century Toppers. The Century Toppers held their meetings at Gene Winfield's Windy's Custom Shop. According to Orvel Reichert you didn't have to own a hot rod, custom, or car in order to join the club.[1] The Century Toppers had their own club jackets that were white with Kelly-Green trim and a top hat logo on the back. Often when riding their cars, members of the club would put on a cheap black top hat as symbol.[1]

Several members of the Century Toppers participated in dry lakes events through the Valley Timing Association.[1]

The Century Toppers Auto Club Hot Rod & Custom Auto Show

The Century Toppers held their first car show December 10 - 11, 1949 at Griswold & Wight Ford Dealership in Modesto. The show was called The Century Toppers Auto Club Hot Rod & Custom Auto Show and Orvel "Speed" Reichert was in charge of it. Gene remembers that Al Sloakner, the man behind the Oakland Roadster Show visited The Century Toppers Auto Club Hot Rod & Custom Auto Show in order to pick cars for his first show.

Al Serpa
Andy Fontana
Anthony Capabianco
Bart Bartoni
Bill Wilson
Bob Hamburg
Bob Petz
Charlie Bell
Clarence Roderick
Dean McLaughlin
Dick Bundick
Dick Petz
Don Grey
Don Hicks
Don Tingle
Duane Glover
Elwood Loomis
Evelyn Horn
Eugene Pereira
Frank Winfield
Fred Schmidt
Gene Perry
Gene Winfield
Grant Hembree
Guy Mencaccy
Hedrick M. Rector
Hubert Martin
Irwin Lee
Jerry Hill
Joe Barnett
John Roland
Jon Enberg
Keith Martins
Kenny Gardner
Lee Keller
Leo Goddard
Lew Thompson
Louis Thompson
Maurice Brown
Mel Furtado
Mervyn Bartoni
Orvel Reichert
Pete Canning
Peter Hischier
Robert Bryant
Roy Bonsack
Roy Dyson
Ray Rosson
Rush McKeon
Steve Corgiat
Ted Williams
Tom McGeehee
Tony Capobianco

Club Cars

Gene Winfield's 1927 Ford Model T Roadster
Lew Thompson's 1932 Ford Roadster
Ted Williams' 1934 Ford 5-Window Coupe



The Legendary Custom Cars And Hot Rods of Gene Winfield by David Grant


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