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Alex Xydias is honored with the Dean Batchelor Award
The West Coast automotive journalist's group, the Motor Press Guild, honors SO-CAL founder Alex Xydias with the Dean Batchelor Award.

Alex Xydias and Jim Menneker stand aside the SO-CAL/GM HHR a Bonneville
Alex Xydias and GM Driver Jim Meneker stand aside the SO-CAL/GM HHR at Bonneville 2005
In 1996, in his early seventies, he once again climbed behind the wheel of a race car and followed that long black line at Bonneville. Driving John Wolf’s Modified Roadster he earned his Competition License at 176 mph. The following year was another banner year. He was selected as one of the Top 100 Most Influential People within the high-performance industry and thus inducted into the Hot Rod Magazine Hall of Fame. Meanwhile, he had been approached by Pete Chapouris who had recently restored Alex’ original belly tank for custodian Bruce Meyer. “Pete was looking for a direction for his new hot rod company and wondered if we could come to some agreement on the use of the So-Cal name,” remembers Alex. Canny Alex who had been wise enough to not only retain the rights to his legendary name and logo but also produce a commemorative catalog, hit it off with his fellow Greek and struck a deal. The new SO-CAL Speed Shop (the SO-CAL was now in upper case to differentiate it from the old business) was announced on November 21, 1997, at the NHRA Hot Rod Reunion in Bakersfield, California. Our story doesn’t end there though. Alex is continually involved with SO-CAL on a consulting basis. He attends many events where his autograph is always in demand and he has given slide shows of his story from England to Phoenix, Arizona. Not only that but he was recently appointed to the board of the NHRA Museum alongside his friend of 60 years Wally Parks. And, as if that is not enough he’s working diligently on transferring all his old motorsports films to video tape so that we can all enjoy them in the comfort of our arm chairs. Makes you tired just thinking about him, doesn’t it?

 

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