“Injecticide” in Motion
Over the past few weeks I’ve been doing a great deal of research on Detroit hot rodding—a subject that always has (and always will) hit close to home. It seems as if every time I dig deeper into the Motor City’s rodding roots, stories seem to intertwine in new ways; it becomes increasingly clear how tight-knit the whole scene really was. Customizers worked on dragsters. Competition cars turned into show-winners. Shops had their areas of expertise, but when a new customer rolled their project through the front door, there were no second thoughts.
This phenomenon wasn’t unique to the Great Lake State, although that’s where today’s story comes from. Earlier this week, I was sifting though some things online when I stumbled upon this mini-doc about Pete Gentile and a pair of his cars. It’s nicely shot, cleanly edited and provides an excellent glimpse into the life of a longtime Michigan hot rodder. I’ve known about Pete’s E/Gas ’55 Chevy for quite some time now, but I wasn’t aware of his Ford that featured some work by the Alexander Brothers. It also came as a surprise that he bought the Chevy from Teddy Z—a nephew of Bill Hines who was a talented customizer in his own right. Teddy was responsible for the enlarged rear wheelwells and rolled rear pan, while the late Paul Hatton lettered the “Injecticide” moniker on the flanks several decades apart.
There’s a lot to like in this nine-plus minute film, but there’s no doubt that my favorite part is the old 8mm footage of Pete cruising the neighborhood in his homebuilt Gasser. It doesn’t get much better than that. Well, the fact that he’s still enjoying his hot rod while building his custom close to 50 years later doesn’t hurt either.
Video by Carfection. You can see more of their work here.