July 14, 2024
Wheels

Classic Wheels Spotlight: 1967 Camaro RS/SS

Camaros: A father-son fascination

Photos by Rudy Host, Jr. - (L to R) Mike Alberts Jr., 21, and Mike Alberts Sr., 64, with their Camaros.

In 1976, Mike Alberts agreed to help his cousin Scott with his racecar, a 1967 Camaro. During that Bicentennial summer, they frequented and raced at many of the local tracks. In 1978, the two cousins became partners on the car. The next year, Mike bought Scott’s half, becoming the sole owner of a car he would own for the next 40-plus years.

In 1980, Mike entered the Camaro in his first car show, The Custom Car Show at McCormick Place. He won first place that year and in the years that followed he saw lots of local interest, press coverage, and a fair share of awards.

Changes

The car has changed a bit over the last 57 years. Originally blue with white stripes, Mike’s Camaro is now painted Candy Apple Yellow, over a White Pearl base. The paint, applied by Louie Trench,

features a prominent stripe that is GM Black with Candy Blue over the top of it. There is also a Candy Orange accent around the bottom of the body.

All of the body panels have been replaced with steel panels, except for the roof. All the floor pans, and wheel tubs, are now aluminum panels.

Photos by Rudy Host, Jr. - The 1967 Camaro owned by Mike Alberts Sr.

Mechanicals

Through the years there have been many engines under the hood. The factory setup was a 350 ci, 4-speed with a 12-bolt posi unit. The Camaro’s latest is a Chevy ‘big block’ 598 cubic inch engine built by Midwest Engine Tech in Mokena, Ill.

The ‘big block’ features two 1150 Cfm Holley Dominator carburetors that sit on top of an aluminum high-rise intake manifold. For a boost, Mike has added a nitrous kit, giving the motor 980 horsepower. The transmission is a Turbo 400 with a billet torque converter and a trans brake, built by Dave Vyhanek.

The Camaro’s rear end is a Ford 9-inch unit with Richmond gears and Strange axles, built by Ed Kirk and Bill Reed. Putting the power to the pavement are 16x33 Hoosier slicks. Holding it all together, the chassis had a back-half chassis added, done by Dennis Spal at Highspeed Welding. Finally, a 12-point roll cage was installed. The chassis and roll cage are painted Porsche red.

Photos by Rudy Host, Jr. - Mike Alberts Jr. getting behind the wheel of Dad's 1967 Camaro racecar.

Father-Son Connection

Although Mike hasn’t raced in several years, he likes to go to the local shows with his son, Mike Jr., who grew up with his Dad’s 1967 Camaro always being a part of his life. When he was a young boy, Mike Jr. says he liked to slide behind the wheel and “drive the car” in the garage.

Growing up, young Mike wanted a Camaro like his dad, and he would always say, some day, he would have his very own Camaro – and that day finally came when he bought a sweet 2019 Summit White Chevy ZL1 Camaro.

Mike Jr. says he had been searching for a while and, in April 2021, he found his Camaro in St. Louis. Currently, the car is 100 percent stock, but there are some upgrades he is planning to do. Under the carbon fiber hood sits a supercharged 6.2-liter engine with a 10-speed automatic transmission behind it.

This 4000-pound car features a 1000-watt sound system (his first upgrade). It’s a nice street car that you can drive anywhere – even to the track. The Mikes drove the car to the track, put some 17-inch slicks on it, and turned an impressive E.T. of 11.20, at 125 MPH, then drove it home again.

For now, father and son will have fun going to the track and local shows with their cars. Once they arrive, the ‘67, which has to be trailered to the shows, young Mike gets some time behind the wheel, driving it from trailer to event and back. Someday, he will likely be taking Dad’s car down the track.

If you have a car you would like to see featured in Classic Wheels, contact Rudy Host, Jr. at Classic.Wheels.Rudy@gmail.com.