In the early days of dry lakes and Bonneville racing, roadsters ruled. Without a top, they offered less drag than coupes, which didn’t even have their own class to race. The Pierson Brothers Coupe changed that. Bobby Meeks recruited the brothers and their car to be sponsored by Edelbrock and use the company’s speed parts to set records.
Meeks knew that the roadsters were using hopped-up flatheads with Edelbrock parts, so they’d need any advantage they could get. It doesn’t take a wind tunnel to figure out that a vertical windshield isn’t doing you any aerodynamic favors. Armed with a gas torch and a will to make a ’34 Ford faster than it had any right to be, Meeks chopped the top nine inches, laid the windshield post back, and created the template for land speed racers to follow.
Meeks built a triple-carb 297-inch flathead that produced more than 300bhp, and set a class record at 153mph. Initially finished in flat black, itt was painted the famous Candy Red, White & Candy Blue with 2D in 1950, and in April 1950 it graced the cover of the then-new magazine Hot Rod.
The coupe continued to be raced by a series of owners, including Dawson Hadley, Jim Evans (1950-51), George Bently, Tom Cobb (1958), Bob Joehnck (1959), Dick Schell, until finally in the early 1980s, when Tom Bryant (1980-1991) bought the car and, using a Chevy engine, achieved 227.33mph at Bonneville,setting eight world records.
In 1992 it was bought by collector Bruce Meyer (1992) who had it restored by Pete Chapouris at So-Cal Speed Shop, with help from Meeks in its 1950 livery to honor the time when it represented the cutting edge of land speed racing.
Photography by Ted 7 courtesy of Petersen Automotive Museum