Open Menu
Open Menu

Numbers-matching Z28 takes Best in Show at Musclepalooza XXVIII

Published in

Photos by Hemmings editorial staff.

“Built, not bought” is a false dichotomy. Enthusiasm does not exclusively germinate from the act of thrusting one’s hands into the innards of their vehicle. It’s not doled out from the mountaintops based on worthiness. Rather, it arises from that impulse to get up early in the middle of a three-day weekend and drive at least an hour away to share your immaculate vehicle with thousands of like-minded gearheads. For that, we saluted Tom Leahy and his 1970 Chevrolet Camaro Z28 with the Best in Show award at this past weekend’s Musclepalooza XXVIII.

True, Tom bought his Z at auction fully restored a little more than a year ago. Given the opportunity, many of us would’ve done so too. Certified as an authentic Z28 by Jerry MacNeish, it still has its factory-installed LT-1 V-8, TH400 three-speed automatic transmission, and Positraction-equipped 12-bolt rear axle. The Z28-standard double white stripes drape over Classic Copper paint while the Saddle Knit vinyl interior makes for a brighter cockpit than the black interior often seen in combination with that paint.

Also rather uncommon about Tom’s Z: the lack of power steering, and the relatively low odometer reading of just under 40,000 miles.

All of that added up to Favorite Chevrolet award on the way to the Best in Show award from the Hemmings Motor News team of editors on the ground at Lebanon Valley Dragway.

1970 Chevrolet Camaro Z28 1970 Chevrolet Camaro Z28 1970 Chevrolet Camaro Z28 1970 Chevrolet Camaro Z28 1970 Chevrolet Camaro Z28

The full list of award winners includes:

Second place Modified Muscle
1957 Chevrolet Bel Air
Patti and Jim Salisbury
East Greenbush, New York

Favorite Modified Muscle
1968 Pontiac Firebird convertible
Tony Harvie
Ware, Massachusetts

Second place Mercury
1965 Park Lane sedan
Jim Myers
Stanfordville, New York

Favorite Mercury
1965 Marauder
Carl and Carl Jr. August
Schenectady, New York

Second place AMC
1970 Rebel Machine
Josh Joseph
Marcy, New York

Favorite AMC
1965 Marlin
Gunther Schuarz
Worcester, Massachusetts

Second place Dodge
1970 Challenger R/T 440 Six Pack
Joe Paluso
Enfield, Connecticut

Favorite Dodge
1969 Swinger
Raymond Hilmer
Millerton, New York

Second place Plymouth
1958 Plymouth Fury “Christine”
Henry Frederick
Pittsfield, Massachusetts

Favorite Plymouth
1970 ’Cuda 440 Six Pack
John Tambascio
Danbury, Connecticut

Second place Oldsmobile
1968 Cutlass S 350
Richard Dupuis
Chicopee, Massachusetts

Favorite Oldsmobile
1972 Cutlass 442 W30
Sean Corey
Putnam Lake, New York

Second place Pontiac
1974 Firebird Trans Am
Rich and Charlene Mastro
Sherburne, Massachusetts

Favorite Pontiac and Best Paint
1964 GTO
Mark Shea
Bennington, Vermont

Second place Buick
1987 Buick Grand National
Paul and Dorota Burton
Feeding Hills, Massachusetts

Favorite Buick
1972 GSX
Dan Hall
Pine Plains, New York

Second place late-model Mopar
2006 Dodge Magnum SRT8
Steve Terpak
Pittsfield, Massachusetts

Favorite late-model Mopar
2018 Jeep Trackhawk
Darleen Rocha
Hudson, New York

Second place Ford
1967 Ford Fairlane GT
Joe Santillo
Poughkeepsie, New York

Favorite Ford
1970 Ford Torino GT pace car
Mike Parotta
Columbus, New Jersey

Second place late-model Ford
2018 Roush Mustang Jackhammer
John Abrams
Newburgh, New York

Favorite late-model Ford
2008 Shelby GT/SC
Kevin and Cheryl Goodell
Portland, Connecticut

Second place late-model GM
2017 Chevrolet Camaro 2SS
Pete and Sandy Zerneri
Cornwall, New York

Favorite late-model GM
2017 Chevrolet SS
Mike Kleiner
Adams, Massachusetts

Best Engine Bay
1968 Chevrolet Camaro
Bill Brockman
Guilderland, New York

Best Paint
1971 Plymouth ‘Cuda
Dean and Casey Watson
Woodbury, Connecticut

Second place Chevrolet
1970 Chevelle SS 396
McCoy Melton
Poughkeepsie, New York

Favorite Chevrolet and Best in Show
1970 Camaro Z28
Tom Leahy
Kingston, New York

Musclepalooza XXIX will take place the Sunday of Memorial Day weekend 2019 at Lebanon Valley Dragway. For more information, visit