bucket beauties 1923 t bucket | speedway motors

5 Ladies, 5 Months, 1 T Bucket Build

Five months ago, a group of Speedway Motors ladies embarked on a mission to tackle the task of building a T Bucket to showcase Speedway Motors new T Bucket fenders. The only problem? Four of the five ladies have never been around a “ground up” car build before. That was about to change with hard work, plenty of dedication and motivation from the doubters.

Bucket Beauties 1923 T Bucket | Speedway Motors

The plan was simple – build a car using all parts available from Speedway Motors. The execution, though, was a little overwhelming. Flashing back to December of 2015 when the plan was conceived, Betsy, who is the oldest granddaughter of “Speedy” Bill Smith, proposed the idea that she round up a team of ladies throughout Speedway Motors’ various departments to build a 1923 T Bucket to unveil a new line of T Bucket fenders offered by Speedway Motors. The idea was a hit and the recruiting began. Four more ladies compiled from the marketing and creative departments rounded out the team of five. Not all had a vast knowledge of building a car from the ground up but each of them offered special skills to meet the deadline of June 24, 2015 – Speedway Motors’ kickoff party at the 2nd annual Day at the Hay event in Lincoln, NE.

bucket beauties team build a 1923 t bucket

Jess, Alanna, Betsy, Bri (left to right)

Katie was the newest to the car world, she was the cheerleader if you will for the team. Her daily positive attitude and “failure is not an option” secured her a spot on the build team. Bri brought the “mom” attitude to the group and kept everyone in line when things went haywire. She is knowledgeable in Speedway Motors vast product line after working in customer service and marketing and she also placed all new Speedway products online.

Betsy, as we stated earlier, is the eldest granddaughter of “Speedy” Bill Smith and felt the need to build a car in her lifetime coming from the Smith bloodline. She was the rock of the build keeping the rest of the team motivated and convinced it would be the best project ever. Alanna is the events master at Speedway and owns a ’65 Mustang. Although she loves driving her classic muscle car, driving one is a lot different than building one. She was up for the challenge and gladly accepted a spot on the team.

Bucket Beauties 1923 T Bucket | Speedway Motors

Last but certainly not least was Jess. She’s the expert on the team and grew up on the salt in Bonneville. At 21 years old her and her father built a ’33 Ford hi-boy that she can be seen cruising around Lincoln as her daily driver. She joined the team from the creative department at Speedway and the other four ladies leaned on her to teach them the way around a shop and how to wrench a bolt the right way.

The parts began piling up and come March 2016 the build was off. Over the next five months, the Bucket Beauties (as they were known as) battled the trials and tribulations of building a car, while learning the satisfaction of putting their blood, sweat, and tears into hours at the shop. They admittingly butted heads but worked through it like a team and fired up their T Bucket for the first time on Thursday, June 23rd just in time for the Day at the Hay kickoff party in Speedway Motors parking lot. They met their goal, became closer friends, and the car turned out great!

Bucket Beauties 1923 T Bucket | Speedway Motors

Getting to the down and dirty, here’s what was used to build the Bucket Beauties ‘23 T Bucket. Starting with a Speedway Motors ’23 frame kit which included the body, bed and channeled floor, the Beauties upgraded the front end with a chrome one and installed a Ford 9-inch Currie rear end with a 350 Ring and Pinion setup. An Edelbrock 1806 carb sits atop the BluePrint 383c.i. small block Chevy engine that was mounted and installed between the rails while a B&M TH 350 transmission was mated to the back. Of course, Speedway’s new ’23 T full fender kit was installed over the tires and along the body and the car was finished in none other than a Mopar favorite, Plum Crazy purple paint, to go along with Speedway’s traditional color scheme.

The entire build, including all of the ups and downs, was cataloged on a blog that you can check out at the following link: www.BucketBeauties.com. There you can go back in the archives and read each blog insert that follows along with the build. You can also put a face to a name of each of the Bucket Beauties five members as well as check out all the parts they used available from Speedway Motors for the ’23 T.

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Associate Editor

Steven is the youngest member of our team and grandson to the legendary Bob Bunker who piloted the green "Folsom Flash" '55 Chevy. As a dragstrip kid, Steven started his automotive journalism path by photographing drag racing events. Since joining our team, Steven has grown leaps and bound journalistically. He is now artfully crafting stories around the awesome machines at the shows, as well as the men and women behind them. When Steven is not on the road covering events, he spends his downtime on the water fishing, building his '62 Chevy Nova or cruising his 1987 GMC Suburban.

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