Gearhead of the Week: Lisa Summerfield

Gearhead of the Week: Lisa Summerfield

Corvette special!

The next several weeks, Gearhead of the Week will feature local owners of the different generations of Chevrolet Corvettes, leading up to the 2013 Bloomington Gold show June 28-30 at the grounds of the State Farm Center in Champaign.

Corvette history: 1962 was the last year of the first-generation Corvette (1953-1962). It had a trunk lid and exposed headlights, which disappeared until later Corvette models. The first generation featured a solid rear axle, wrap around windshield and a convertible only body style. The first generation received the side coves and lost the fins beginning in 1957.

Driver's license

Name: Lisa Summerfield

Age: 37

Residence: Champaign

Occupation: Nurse anesthetist

How long I've been a gearhead: "Dad fixed up cars, and I watched him in the garage as long as I can remember."

On the sticker

Make/model: 1962 Corvette, first generation

Powertrain: 350-cubic-inch V8 Ramjet with fuel injection (not original series motor) and alternator, with original transmission Borg Warner T-10 and rear end.

Class: Stock/modified

The story: Summerfield's father, James W. Andrews (accounting for the JWA license plate) was the third or fourth owner of the car, and she had never seen it run as it sat in the garage for 26 years. After her father died in 2006, she sent it to a restoration specialist who did a 31/2-year frame off restoration. The car before restoration had been modified for drag racing and had at least six coats of paint. In addition to a newer engine, restorer Duane Smith of Waukesha, Wis., added disc brakes, a stainless steel exhaust and radial tires.

Watch the video

More sights and sounds of Summerfield's ride can be found here.

Know any gearheads?

Do you know someone who has a passion about vehicles?

Nominate a friend, family member or even yourself for Gearhead of the Week by emailing

We have received a gratifying number of respondents, so please be patient. We're working our way through the nominees — and we're always glad to receive more.

If you know of any events within driving distance that would be of interest to gearheads in the area, email us. We'll run them occasionally in our gearhead calendar.


June 1: The 25th annual Spring Fling Car Show presented by Wheels Car Club, downtown Tuscola. Registration starts at 6 p.m. ($10 entry fee includes dash plaques). Awards for the top 26 cars, Club Participation trophy, Sweetest Ride trophy (by Flesor's Candy Kitchen), Downtown Diner award — plus best of show, best engine, best paint and best interior. Live band Jim Easter and the Artistics ('50s and '60s rock 'n' roll). Must be present to receive a trophy. Information:, 253-3047, 253-4147, 268-3873.

June 1: Cruising For A Cure, a fundraiser for the American Cancer Society Relay For Life of Champaign County and sponsored by Sundowners Car Club. First stop 9-10 a.m., Colbert Park, 203 E. Church St., Savoy; second stop 10:30-11:30 a.m., downtown Sidney; third stop noon to 12:45 p.m., park on Grand Avenue, St. Joseph; final stop 1-2 p.m. downtown Homer (enter your car after arriving for Homer Soda Fest car show; voting by the public; trophies awarded). A trophy for the car owner who brings in the most donations to American Cancer Society. Information: Jill by calling/texting 979-1504 or emailing

Aug. 3: Villa Grove Car Show 2013, "Cars for the Cure" in support of breast cancer awareness. 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., Harrison Park. Registration runs from 9 a.m. to noon ($10 entry fee); trophies will be awarded at 3 p.m. to top 20 cars, top 10 trucks, top 10 motorcycles, veterans' choice, chairman's choice (three), sponsors' choice (three), best paint (three), best interior (two) and farthest traveled. Other features: dash plaques, free goody bags, raffle drawings throughout the day, first 25 entrants receive free T-shirt, free barbecue lunch to all participants, 50/50 drawing to benefit the Mills Breast Cancer Institute. Register/information: Stephen Akers, 832-9778 or 621-3027.

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