BOWIE POLLARD

> SUNSHINE COAST, QLD

STORY BORIS VISKOVIC PHOTOS MITCH HEMMING

BOWIE Pollard grew up around surfing and working on old cars, two passions passed on by his dad. Heís in his late 20s, is an accomplished pro surfer and has already owned a bunch of cool cars, all of them a lot older than him. His latest, this wild-looking hot rod, mixes 60s-era styling with modern LS grunt.

So, do you have a real job?

Sort of! I work in a surf shop called Beach Beat in Caloundra, but Iíve been into cars and surfing since a young age.

Tell us why you stuffed an LS into a 60s show rod.

A lot of my good mates have always been into LS engines and Iíve always been on the opposite trend. Theyíve all been into Commodores and Iíve always had Cadillacs and Falcons, all that early stuff. Itís only because Iíve been in a few cars with LS donks, itís just such reliable power, and I wanted to build something different and in some respects get up peopleís noses a little bit Ė like the purists. But after having it, itís just so reliable and youíve got good power, but itís different, thatís the main thing.

What did it start out as? Itís got a Whippet grille on it.

Thatís all original; itís a 1930 Willys Whippet roadster. If you can imagine what you get for $300, thatís what it was like Ė it was pretty bad. Thatís why we filled in all of the doors and the boot, to give it more structural support, if anything. It was originally getting built as a drag car, but then I sold the Model A tudor that I had and I wanted another hot rod, so we did it as a street car.

What else is in the quiver, as you surfers like to say?

Iím building a í59 Corvette with an LS, and a í59 two-door Cadillac thatís all rusty and ratty. Thereís an XP coupe that might end up with a Barra. Iíve still got my first car, which is a í66 XP coupe that was painted green metalflake. I used to have an XM coupe with a 302 Windsor and C4, which I traded for a four-door í59 Cadillac. Then I built the Model A tudor.

How many boards have you got?

I ride everything from alaia finless surfboards to old single-fins, to modern shortboards and longboards, old mals. Iíve probably got over 100 boards; Iíve been collecting them since I was 13. Because I compete a lot, you need quite a few boards to choose from. Theyíre as addictive as cars.

Whatís your favourite surf spot?

Probably the Mentawais in Indonesia. For sheer perfection of waves and quality, moreso on the shortboarding side of things, itís just a beautiful part of the world. But saying that, Iíd probably rate the best wave Iíve ever surfed is South Straddie at the Gold Coast. And Noosa; you canít get a better longboarding wave than Noosa, I donít think. s

The LS has such reliable power, and I wanted to build something different and get up the puristsí noses a little bit