Sunday School 2019 – Part 1

I never claim to be anything near proficient with a camera. In fact, I’ll be the first to say I’m a complete rookie given the lifetime’s worth of learning there is to do with photography. That said, I’m very happy with this year’s set of photos – actually, make that ecstatic.

Up until this point, if you’d asked me what I believed my best set of photos was I’d have answered “Sunday School 2018”. Looking through this year’s set however, so far I’m pretty sure I’ve beaten that. I give the credit to the great combination of an amazing location, beautiful weather, and some outstanding subject matter; the new camera gear I invested in earlier this year helped out too. It all came together and I’m beyond pleased with what I’ve seen so far as I’ve been editing. I truly hope that you all enjoy this year’s photos too. Incidentally, none of this is meant as praise regarding my own photographic abilities. Rather, I look at it as an example of the famous monkeys/typewriters/Shakespeare scenario. Sometimes, things just work out.

Anyway, one difference you may note with this year’s show coverage is the lack of any pre-show slash setup photos. Normally I’d grab some of our cars staging prior to rolling in to the event as well as some while everyone was parking up and cleaning. This time around we left the Staples lot to roll in to the show the instant I arrived (I was last. Whoops), and then as soon as I had the Silvia somewhat parked I tossed the key to Josè and hopped in the Grand Prix to get a ride back to my house to pick up the Focus and bring it down too. Once there, it was then time to ensure all three were touched up for the event and do the usual other prep with the rest of the group.

The original plans actually called for my mother to have a pair of cars entered as well. We intended for her Focus to take part alongside her S13 so that she and I could display a pair of complementary vehicles. In the end it was decided that each of us having to coordinate transport for more than one vehicle was a bit excessive, and as it happened Philip was trying to find a spot in the show to display his Mk3 ST so it was decided that the S13 would sit this year’s event out, allowing him to attend and making our lives just that much easier.

There was a lot of coordinating going on behind the scenes, trying to “assign” vehicles to drivers so that everything could be there for the big day, with the main issue being my own cars. With special insurance on all three vehicles there are age limits imposed on them which limited the possibilities of who could drive them; hence why my Grand Prix was driven by my mother and her hatch was then driven by Josè. If the age limit weren’t a factor I was intending to give him the Silvia to take to the event since he of course can’t experience them in California. Oh well…

As a final note before we get to the photos (finally, I’m sure you’re all saying): I’d mentioned in the Driven 2019 pre-show photos that there was a noticeable shift in the event this year. That shift may be expanding to encompass the Calgary “scene” in general, as it was announced following the awards this year that Sunday School X – AKA Sunday School 2020 – will be the final edition of the show. It’s sad, and came out of the blue, but it’s understandable. What’s left to be seen is what kind of a void its absence will result in with the local community, but there’s no denying the impact it – and ill.motion overall – have had on our city. Whatever you want to call it – a brand, group, movement – ill.motion has been one of the most influential and impactful elements that I think we’ve ever seen in Calgary. We owe everyone involved a massive thank-you for what they’ve done for us over the years.

And with that, let’s get to the photos from Sunday School IX:

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Given there were no roll-in/setup shots this year as mentioned, we’ll kick off this year’s coverage with our own group. Since our physical starting point was our own cars – naturally – that’s where I started with the pictures as well.

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Up first in our line this year was my old Grand Prix; it was nice to have it out at Sunday School again as I believe the last time it attended was 2014. No word yet on if it won Jason’s award for dirty wheels with its stained Crosslaces.

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Mustard – you all know this thing. Given Josè was with us I decided to bring our award from iMSS 2016 to display on the dash since he was a part of that win. As it happened, this year’s awards featured a similar but updated design which was a nice coincidence!

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The nugget was up next, at its first proper show under my ownership. I make no secret of the fact that this thing is a 10-footer (at best) but I’ve been happy – and surprised, frankly – to see it get so much positive feedback so far. This thing has been an enormous amount of fun to work on and drive.

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A few weeks back the first photos (and video) of the hatch’s makeover were posted on the site but we jump ahead now to the 95% finished product – the rest of the flare install will of course be shared, don’t worry. It wasn’t the biggest makeover that one of our cars had seen for a show but given it was all done in the span of just over 24 hours, that’s a good thing. Thursday evening the car had still yet to be touched, and by Friday evening we were buttoning it up for the weekend’s events.

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Finishing off the first half of our group was Ruzz’s RS; there’s a video coming on this as well, as a few days prior to iMSS he and I had met up at a local shop to get it on the dyno and see how it was performing with its new Stage 2 configuration.

I should have brought ear plugs…

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The next few photos are actually from a bit later in the day, in case the change in lighting and the different position of the Lexus LX in the background don’t tip you off. They came out better than those I took at the start of the day so I’m using them instead. Philip’s ST is one I’ve always liked the style of, with his Formula GTs and Vega aero. I didn’t get much of a chance to chat with him in person as we all went separate ways to view the show, but hopefully we can coordinate and attend another event together in the future!

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Yolanda’s ST sat next to Philip’s, with the plain side showing at this angle. If you haven’t seen her new livery yet, it’s positioned at an angle so that when viewed from the driver’s front corner you see a car with stripes, but if viewed from the passenger rear quarter you see a car with bare white paint. Two looks in one vehicle.

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Sriracha, of course, largely unchanged since last year but does it really need much more? Derrick and Mario did cut down the Vega splitter just before the show though, essentially tucking it closer to the body prior to then painting it black. It looked good before, but looked way better after the revision.

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Selsun was also sporting a subtle change, specifically to do with the front grille – some may have spotted that the emblem was removed but a closer look revealed that the indent in the grille had also been shaved for a seamless debadge. It took a bit of work on Mario’s part to get it carried out but now the blue hatch is fully debadged aside from the two Ford ovals.

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Last but not least, we had Wingz’ Miata at the other end of our row. You last saw Spark in a quick update post covering the roll bar’s fitting; since then some new graphics, a change in colour for the rear wheels, and clear side diffusers were the notable changes.

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As always, I had to get a shot of our commemorative decals. With Josè coming up not only did we want to play up the Canadian stereotypes again (sorry ‘boot that eh) but I wanted to incorporate something to represent Canada in the decals, hence the maple leaf and red/white scheme. Of all of our commemorative decals from over the years these are definitely among my favourites – possibly my actual favourite out of them all. Everyone seemed to love them too which was wicked.

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Anyway, we should get on to everyone else’s cars, wouldn’t you agree? The first one to be shot was Steve’s F80, sitting at the end of the aisle across from us. I’m definitely an F80-over-F82 person. Sedans are cooler, fact (especially if you then toss in a half cage and effectively make them two seaters. They just are).

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Matching S2000s, almost. One an AP2 on MF10s, and one an AP1 (with AP2 lights) on TEs.  Interesting to note the difference in hues between them.

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Aldrich’s IS300, which has been taking shape quite nicely. With the hood pins and widebody fenders the front end has a perfect amount of aggression to it. I can’t wait to see the continued progress on this given what’s still in the plans for it.

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I believe this was the first time I’d seen JC’s new car? He retired his CT and moved into a new IS instead which was of course already sporting some mods. Check out the concavity of the rear wheels as compared to the front!

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The green (Acid Green?) accents on this have always been perfect. Sometimes, you just need the tiniest hint of colour to make a car really pop.

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Baller cars. Baller wheels.

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I still don’t know who owns this EK9 but props to whomever it is; this is such a classic look with all of the Spoon parts (and a couple other brands mixed in for good measure). Note the signed spark plug cover too as the cherry on top. The purple beauty washers were perhaps a “newer” touch on an otherwise timeless build but they accented it nicely.

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Josh’s restomodded, K-swapped EG. One of the best builds at a show, always.

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Eric’s 1JZ swapped, Super Street featured S15 Spec S; it was actually Eric that I bought my S15’s DC2R lip from, so thanks again to him for providing that! This thing has always been one of my favourite Strawberries – congrats to him on taking home an Honour Roll award this year as well!

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Jack’s S13; I recall that at a Beyond meet earlier this year my mother heard this thing fire up (it had a hood on, so the LS was hidden) and was surprised at how different it sounded as compared to hers. No more 4-banger here.

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I’m unsure of who owned this Evo, but I liked it. Subtle but likely packing a bit of a punch.

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Last year I derped and failed to grab a full-car shot of this ITR, so here’s a few photos to make up for that. Like the CTR this thing was heavily Spoon themed (albeit with Volks) and it was amazing; catalogue cars like this will always be impressive. Incidentally, it’s my adoration of Spoon to thank for the Focus having blue accents like the banner background, and other little details like the fender decals which were based on the Type One pieces.

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Jayson’s Levin, with the hood popped to show off the Beams heart. The small TEs and chunky tires really made this thing look tough.

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I never realized just how much sparkle there was in the OEM R35 paint on Giuseppe’s S15; the insane amount of sun this day really made it pop! Giuseppe and I usually chat cars for a bit when we visit his family’s market and if he keeps going with this car it should only get wilder from here based on what I’ve heard. Keep in mind he’s only had this thing a couple of seasons now and it was totally stock when it was first imported.

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Melle’s turbo KA S13 hatch. Jimmy showed me around this thing one day earlier this year when I stopped by VEX; with so many people dropping LS or JZ engines in (nothing wrong with that, mind – even the S13 in the next photo received one) it’s neat to see a KA getting some love.

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And as promised…a few battle scars showed that this coupe gets used but it still showed really well. I especially liked the purple/gold theme under the hood.

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Terence’s Chinablau EK still looked like it had rolled out of the paint booth the day prior. It has been a year since it was debuted and I still can’t get over just how freaking good the vintage Mercedes hue looks on the car – I need to shoot this thing properly sometime.

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Binh’s 240Z may have looked like it was relatively unchanged since last year’s event where it was unveiled, but it had actually seen a lot of work since then, even being at Speedy just a few weeks prior to the show – the same time as my mother’s flares in fact. Binh refuses to sit still with this thing and is continuing to take an already impressive car even further. A lot of the paintwork was even redone in fact, following more work on the body.

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Ryan’s MR2 is a build I adore not only for how great it is in terms of parts, execution, and detail, but for the fact that he’s had it forever and is always changing it up to keep it fresh.

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This RSR 4-litre would have been a familiar sight for any regular attendees of Cars and Coffee, and was another Honour Roll award recipient if I recall correctly.

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Speaking of awards (and Honour Roll winning cars), if there had been one for “The car I took the most photos of” it would have gone to this – Nick’s redone FD, now sporting a TCP Magic kit but that same instantly recognizable paint hue. Note that the rear widebody panels were actually molded to the body for a cleaner appearance too.

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And finally for tonight, a special thank-you goes to Suzuki for posing for what is possibly one of my favourite photos ever. This is where I’m going to cut it now; it’s late and I need to get to bed for work tomorrow! Check back soon for Part 2, as there’s still more to come from Sunday School 2019. I’m not a machine like Jason (Part 4 already, as of my writing this? Holy) but I’ll try to get them up before long! Thanks for reading. 

-Bill

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