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Racing opened doors for Steve Fosbinder.

Cars have been the Fremonter's hobby for 60 years.

Fosbinder's father, John, steered him toward car restoration.

"My dad was a mechanic during World War II. He worked at garages in Uehling and Oakland," Steve said.

"At age 4, I watched. By 7, he let me start doing stuff," he added.

Later the family moved to Fremont, where Steve graduated from high school in 1963.

He has been married to his high school sweetheart, Janet, for 45 years.

"He used to race a 1954 Ford. Racing was in his blood," Janet said. "Back in the early 1960s, we went racing every weekend."

Steve was one of the first in Fremont to own a Chevrolet Corvette.

"He didn't tell me - just drove up in a hunter green Corvette," Janet said.

He cruised through life, but took some time off to raise a family.

"Steve always had his eyes to the sky and his nose to the ground. He hung on to his dream - even after three daughters and four grandchildren," Janet said.

"Age does not have to put limits on realizing our goals," said the couple's daughter, Trisha Shamp of Minnesota. "My dad gave up a lot for his three girls - but he never gave up his love of cars."

"When a family comes, you put things on hold," said Charles Puls of Fremont.

A racer with more than 50 years experience, Puls is owner of C T Engine and Chassis Builders.

Puls has raced with Steve and helped him get back into it.

These days, Steve rebuilds Chevrolet Novas.

He has a red 1963 and a black 1967 model.

"It's a stylish clean little car with a lot of class," he said. "In 1966, the Nova held the class record. The black car took me four years to build - it was completely wrecked.

"I built it as a show car; too big of a motor to drive on the street," he joked.

Unaccustomed to showing off, he will automatically drag out a trophy at the drop of a hat.

The red car resembles a station wagon.

"They didn't make two-doors," he said. "The only way was to do it myself - I cut the doors out."

He replaced the four doors with two larger ones.

"I made it look like a nomad," he explained.

Steve was able to wander around scooping up parts while traveling for his job.

"When selling for Valmont, I stopped at junkyards," Steve said.

He discovered the 1967 Nova in Iowa about 10 years ago.

"He built two cars from nothing and they are both nice," Puls said. "He has an eye for detail and takes the time to do it right."

And both have seen a shift in racing over time.

It seems Steve's got the timing right.

 

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