Wekfest South 2016 Coverage…Part 1…

Ahhh Texas… What a great place. I always tell people when they ask me that Houston is my favorite stop of the Wekfest tour and I’m reminded every year when I’m there exactly why I feel that way. That was a really long sentence. I enjoy the southern portion of the Wekfest tour because it feels the most dynamic in terms of the car builds, their varying styles, and more importantly, the people. There are more than a few guys down there that really help push the community forward in the right direction but the guys from Mayday Garage are probably the most well-known and respected. They have been around pretty much as long as I have and have always been at the forefront of helping develop the tuning community down in Houston. Every year, they organize a Wekfest Pre-Meet on that same weekend of the show and it is always a great time. The turnout is incredible and you often see cars there that aren’t even a part of the Wekfest event. I have a lot of respect for those guys and what they do. In the past they’ve even attached my name to their pre-meet and I don’t even do anything for them but show up to chill. That entire weekend is something I look forward to attending annually because it all comes together in a tight package of good cars and enthusiasts…

We took a shorter trip around this time. Normally we will spend an extra day down in Texas just to hang out and eat but it seemed as if everyone’s schedules were pretty packed so the show was moved to an earlier day and as such, so was the pre-meet. We flew in on Friday evening and left Texas by Sunday morning. I wished that we could have stayed longer but it made sense to keep it brief this time with so much going on back at home. I’m still in the midst of moving to an entirely new facility so I need as much time as possible to organize and still find time to throw up content here on the site. I decided not to Vlog this year for Wekfest South because I really wanted to focus on photography and also because Der needed his video gear for his trip to Iceland. I didn’t want to sacrifice the quality of the Vlogs by giving you guys shaky video and since the trip was so short, I wasn’t sure how much time I had to cram content in. One of the big reasons why I also like Wekfest South so much is because of the venue itself. The George R. Brown Convention Center is kinda hokey looking because they place a heavy emphasis on the good ol’ American “red, white, and blue” colorway, but everything surrounding the outside perimeter of it makes for beautiful shots. The back entrance in particular is really cool. The area is right under a large bridge and in the mornings, the light peeks through perfectly and offers a great ambiance for the show as the vehicles enter the venue. I love shooting the cars out there during roll-in because the lighting and industrial-look of the venue almost makes every shot look like it is set-up during a proper shoot. The photos themselves come out great, in my opinion anyway, and I find myself shooting more outside and almost not caring to shoot inside…

Most of what you will see in this mini-series of coverage are photos from the very early morning of roll-in. If there weren’t enough reasons for me to love this event already, I should also mention that the hotel we stayed at is directly connected to the convention center itself. That means that I don’t have to wake-up as early as the rest of the Wekfest staff! I can kinda just wake-up on my own time, get ready, and simply walk over to the convention center to shoot. That gave me like 15 more minutes of sleep (15 minutes aka “I showed up an hour later”) and everybody knows that every minute counts when you have to spend an entire day at a car event. Some of the guys came out to Texas with me and they even brought me Starbucks in the morning. I couldn’t ask for a much better weekend. Tiffanie was hired by the Wekfest staff to shoot the event for them this time around so her shots are going to be over on the official Wekfest Blog. She even shot some photos during the pre-meet too so head on over there to check that out. I’m glad she has a guest gig over there now so we can continue to work together during the Wekfest tour…

This time around it’s all me. Just like the good ol’ days of Wekfest coverage back before there was video and other shenanigans. Enjoy and share if you like. Come back for more because I always shoot an unusually insane amount of photos that I am still going through as I post these up for you guys to see…

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I received a Facebook message a couple days before the event from Fernando Huerta, who owns this Honda del Sol from 5Star. He usually registers for the show and has dominated the Honda category in the past years so I was surprised to hear that he hadn’t planned on coming this year. He mentioned that he was expecting a baby around this same time so he didn’t think he could make the show. Things ultimately worked in his favor and his first child was delivered a little earlier than expected. He wanted to bring his family out to the show along with his del Sol so he hit me up to see if we could squeeze him into the Wekfest booth. I talked to Junior from Wekfest, confirmed there was just enough room for him to join us, and the day I arrived in Texas, I told him to make the trek out from San Antonio. The morning of the show, I walked over to the venue to start shooting and Fernando’s del Sol was one of the first cars in the building…

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Amanda’s CR-X is looking great with the J’s Racing front lip, Volk TEs, and Recaro seats. She has one of the cleanest Honda builds in the area and I’m glad that she’s continued to make progress on her long-time build…

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She recently pulled the motor out again to do some work on the engine bay and the car is looking as great as it ever has. Mix in just the right amount of sunlight and this turned-out to be one of my favorite photos from the weekend…

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A few footsteps away from Amanda’s CR-X was this rootbeer-colored 326Power Zenki S14. Love the color, silver accents for contrast, and the aggressive fitment of the Superstar Leon wheels…

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Mike Montgomery installing his Airwalker front bumper before rolling into the venue…

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The black paint on this JZA80 Supra looked like it was still wet against the morning sky…

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Subaru BRZ cruising into the set-up lot…

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Mike Schietroma and the RCG-built EM1 Civic made the trip out from Arizona for the Wekfest South event…

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Akachan Chea brought-out his NA1 NSX and its collection of rare-to-find parts…

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On the passenger side, Chea decided to rock a set of Advan Racing RG wheels in staggered formation…

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I think the moment when people saw Mike’s EM1 arrive on the premises that the “Best of Show” award was going to be a little out of reach for many of the competitors that day…

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Sounds a little harsh to say but I think you will get a better understanding of that when you have actually had the opportunity to see this car in person and all of its many insane details…

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Sometimes the light just comes through perfectly and sets the shot up for you…

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Love how Spoon Sports side mirrors look on NSXs…

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Simplicity is lost on many but not on this R35 GTR on matching white BBS LM…

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I remember giving Mike Montgomery the “Best Engine Bay” award at the Wekfest Chicago event this year. He arrived from Iowa this time around with a new supercharger set-up…

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Bagged Volkswagen laid-out in the roll-in lot…

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Johnel Vidad’s Aimgain GT widebody Lexus LS460 representing Lucky Brakes…

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Rob’s EK from Team 5Star with First Molding front lip and custom front fender flares to utilize his front-staggered Volk CEs…

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Montgomery’s Midori Green Civic ready to head into the venue…

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Jorge Torres’ K-swapped Mugen-themed del Sol with custom vented front fenders…

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Eddie’s Phoenix Yellow Integra Type R with EDM-spec front end from Team 5Star…

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Really like the color on this K-swapped EK from 5Star. Looks great on black Spoon SW388 wheels also…

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Toan from Wekfest directing one of the bike owners as he gets ready to roll into the show…

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Christian Santiago from 5Star’s Advance-kitted NSX looking consistently great year-to-year…

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Another of the 5Star PY ITR with Mugen Gen. 1 rear spoiler…

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Captured this custom widebody G35 coupe while I was taking a dump under an unused semi-truck trailer… I might be kidding.

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From a higher angle…

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I was perhaps a split-second too late in capturing this Civic as it drove into the venue. Sometimes its hard to capture the perfect shot as the cars are moving and unaware of your presence…

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Flared Subaru WRX in red owned by a female automotive enthusiast…

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I think its nice to capture the cars in the morning sometimes because you get to see them in their natural state, not polished or cleaned-up yet for the show…

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I find it odd when people use and re-interpret other people’s car crew names to make something similar but not too entirely different…*cough* dapper *cough*

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Silver Mugen MF10 paired with Spoon Sports big brakes in their signature blue hue…

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A rare non-widebody FR-S appears…

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Quite an extensive collection of custom body alterations on this coupe to make those Work Meister M1 wheels fit…

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One more of the white-on-white R35…

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Chuy and Yuta made the trip out to Houston to check-out what was new with the Texas car community… Thanks for the Venti Ice Coffee from Starbucks…

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Interesting to see a Japanese RHD Mitsubishi Pajero in Houston of all places…

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S14 Kouki running a Final Konnexion “First Contact” kit…

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Thomas Pinai brought out his Mode Parfume GS400 to the Wekfest event after a brief hiatus. He is the first enthusiast to ever win “Best of Show” at three different Wekfest events in three different states…

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He hasn’t done too much to the car because he’s done pretty much everything you can to this GS, but he did manage to have these custom carbon vented front fenders made for the car. I don’t know if they were received very well, depending on who you ask, but I like them. I also like the custom Ganador Super Mirrors that he had done in carbon as well…

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The BRG crew was represented well at Wekfest with a variety of cars including this Z33 on gold SSR Formula Mesh…

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I guess you can say we had our own “Cars and Coffee” gathering going on that morning…

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Real deal JDM Toyota Soarer 2.5GT from BRG on Brada forged wheels…

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Spoon Sports-inspired AP2 S2000 running modified front fenders that have been shaped to match the Spoon front bumper, and rear Industry Garage over fenders…

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Ian from BRG looks way too big for his 1969 Austin Mini Cooper…

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Kelley Orange’s Sorcery widebody NA2 NSX was one of the more well-rounded builds of the event. It had full aero, wheels, air-cup suspension, custom interior, and some solid engine modifications…

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Odd and random fact but Orange is actually Thomas Pinai’s neighbor…

That’s a wrap on Part 1 of the coverage. I’m still going through the rest of the photos so I’m not entirely sure how many parts there will be. Make sure to come back for more though because I have many more great photos for you guys to see. Thanks for looking!!…

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2 thoughts

  1. Thank you Joey Lee for writing awesome stories about life, the scene, and event coverage. Always nice to see a good group of car enthusiasts who share the same passion and love for what we do. It was good to see you and the wekfest crew again in Texas.

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