In Episode 7, Chris visits Dennis Varni's car collection in San Jose, California to check out not one, not two, but three incredible custom car garages full of award-winning roadsters and automobilia collected throughout the years. Watch Chris climb in Dennis' first Bonneville Salt Flats car and hear about Dennis' record-breaking race in this episode of Dream Collections.
THE FASTEST CAR COLLECTION WE'VE EVER TOURED
Have we found the ultimate enthusiast car collection? Dive into the garage of Dennis Varni. Discover award-winning Hot Rods, unique customs, micro cars, and European race cars as we head into day 2 of the Road To Car Week! Every day until the 10th of August, we will post a new garage tour. On the 12th, the largest digital car event begins with over 25 hours of exclusive automotive content! All videos during Petersen Car Week are presented by Michelin. A huge thank you for making this digital enthusiast event possible.
By Ben Griffin
12th August 2015
Ever considered what the most beautiful car ever is? Some petrolheads will say the Lamborghini Miura, so it's no wonder a man waited more than a decade to own one.
YouTube channel Petrolicious decided to showcase both the car and its owner, Dennis Varni, in a documentary that really does the Italian supercar justice.
Referred to as "a hot rodder's hot rodder" and "Captain Fun," these names ﬁt Varni perfectly. Seeing a hot rod while riding the school bus was all it took. At 13, he bought his ﬁrst Model A for $45, money he earned by picking prunes and selling his train set. Learning as he went, by 1964, the roadster was nice enough for him to join the Bay Area Roadsters, and 50 years later, he's still a member. Following a stint in the service, he went to work for Goodies Speed Shop, rising to general manager of the entire chain. He has since successfully run a variety of businesses, from restaurants to rubbish. In the late 1960s, starting with a $25 frame and $100 body. he built a state-of-the-art '29 highboy roadster. After 20 years of being driven, it was rebuilt and named America's Most Beautiful Roadster in 1992. It has since been driven more than 50,000 miles. ln 1961, he went to Bonneville as a crew member. Again, that was all it took. In 1987, he realized his dream and qualified for the Bonneville 200 MPH Club at 225 mph in a '32 Ford street roadster backward! His small-block-powered 265mph belly tank was next, followed by his six cylinder streamliner that in 2012 set a still-standing class record. He has won at the Pebble Beach Concours and raced antique cars in France, Italy, Spain, Australia, and Mexico, including six times in the Carrera Panamericana with his winning '55 Lincoln. Most recently, with wife Kathy, he won the four-week, 5,000-mile Classic Safari Challenge in South Africa - driving a '61 Falcon!
/BIG MUSCLE: 1961 Ford Falcon Rally Car
by the Drive
To most people, modifying a classic car for "drivers" means stiff suspension, big wheels, and sticky tires.
For Dennis Varni, it meant rally. It meant bad gas in foreign countries, dirt, broken roads, and unforeseen obstacles. It meant having Hills Rod $amp; Custom turn a Ford Falcon into a rally car.
It meant turning a Ford Falcon into a rally car.
Los Gatos Magazine
Blood, Sweat & Gears: Dennis Varni's Passion
By Duffy Jennings
Published: June 21, 2013
Back when Dennis Varni was 14 and riding the Los Gatos school bus in the mid 1950s, he kept an eye out for the hot rod that he often saw on Winchester Boulevard near the Villa Felice.