Many LRM readers come to discover this automotive sport from their local street scene and in the pages of this world wide publication. But for some, Lowriding's history and principles are instilled from previous generations, as was the case with Freddy Leal. Born into the onda of the '70's, it is safe to say that Lowriding is all Freddy Leal has ever known. "As we got into our teens, my dad, Pancho, started City Style C.C. with the goal of keeping the family core intact," recalls Freddy. The club's charter included Mr. Leal's five sons, known today in the culture as the Leal Bros. At 16, Freddy's parents gave him a 1986 Olds Cutlass, and a few mods later, he was cruising his first Lowrider down Corpus Christi's legendary Ocean Drive. His father noticed his son's dedication and leadership within the club ranks, and in 1991, Freddy was passed the reins of the club and he has served as Club President to date.
For years, the Leal Bros custom flake paint schemes have been renowned throughout Texas, but Freddy wanted to expand the body shop's reputation; vowing to set two goals for 2012. First, as part of a Lowrider build-off, this gulf coast shop competed with other custom shops from Texas and Oklahoma during the six month competition. The goal was to win and the shop's customized B-body was crowned the Wego "Stock to Stun" champion. Leal's second goal involved living up to his family name and reputation, something in which his father had set a heavy precedent. Years of witnessing his father spray his flake style on many of the coastal Lowriders while unselfishly instilling his custom refinishing technique into his sons' potentials was about to be on full display. Decades later, this tangerine over silver flake Caprice, painted by Freddy, was about to compete among the world's best Lowriders at the 2012 LRM Las Vegas Super Show. With the Leal family present, Freddy's "LB1" received first place in the '70's Mild Custom Class, giving Freddy some satisfaction in reaching the goal of carrying on his father's legacy. He was not finished there, however. During the presentation of the Special Awards, the Best Flake of Show was given to this Texas Glasshouse. As Freddy walked back to the family with award in hand, he presented it to his father and mentor, Pancho Leal, with an emotional, "Thank you Dad, today your flake won among the best!" His goal was certainly reached.
Freddy graciously thanks his numerous friends and family members for their decades of support; most notably his brothers, his sister Linda, his wife Sharise, his Mom Aurora, and Pancho for his inspiration to their family and car club. Paz, Tejas
Model: Kassandra Salinas
Owner: Freddy Leal
Vehicle: 1976 Chevrolet Caprice
City/ State: Corpus Christi, TX
Club: City Style
Engine/Chassis: Rebuilt 350 turbo with glasspack chrome dual exhaust by Steve Torres at Leal Bros. Molded and painted firewall, cowl, frame, and floor pan by owner.
Body/ Paint: The body was smoothed and shaved by Tim Pena and Arturo Garcia, while the owner sprayed a House of Kolor Tangerine over a silver base with silver flake. The car was finished with Juan Leal laying out the multi-color graphics, and all work was completed at Leal Bros Paint & Body. Skirt murals by John Saenz.
Hydraulics: Shorty Villarreal at Shorty's Hydraulics, in Houston, installed a hardlined Veterano four-pump chrome setup with 8-inch strokes in front & 10-inch in rear.
Interior: Robert Rios of R&R Customs, in El Paso, stitched the velour into the old school style biscuit tuck with custom dash and center console.
Sound System: John Vega of Shorty's Hydraulics installed a Pioneer deck with Kicker system of dual 500 watt amps pushing (2) 10-inch mids and (2) 10-inch subwoofers.
Tires: 5.20s Premium Sportway.
Wheels: Painted and engraved 13x7 Galaxy wire wheels.