Street Machine awards 2023!

A quick look back over the highs and lows of 2023


What a year it was in the wonderful world of Australian hot street car community. Here’s a quick spin through the highlights:

‘Most incredible community event’ award

Let’s start with a serious one. The Canberra hot car community turned out in droves to support the Cruise for a Cause event in July, raising almost $75K to support Ryan Tanaskovic and his family in Ryan’s fight against cancer. They also raised Ryan’s spirits, enabling him to rip a trailer skid in his XY Falcon and spend the day surrounded in a cloud of love, good vibes and support.

Tragically, Ryan passed away a couple of weeks after the event, but we are so glad his family and friends were able to give him such an incredible party while he still had time.

‘Most-clicked on feature car’ award

We’ve featured more than a few Jags over the years in Street Machine, but the popularity of Hamish Davidson’s Barra-powered XJC blew us away. In fact, it got the most internet traffic of any feature car in 2024!

‘Serving it up to the haters’ award

Not everyone got it when Livi Krevatin’s Porsche 911 took out the Grand Champion sword at Street Machine Summernats 35, with cries of “that’s not a steet machine” ringing out across the internet. Sure, the badge isn’t the usual Summernats fare, but the level of modification wrought upon the previously tatty 1978 model certainly is.

Livi underscored the 911’s street credentials by driving the beast down from Canberra to Melbourne in the pouring rain for Meguiar’s MotorEx.

And now he’s entered it in the Optima Ultimate Street Car Challenge for 2024. Go get ’em, mate!

‘Bringing hot rodders and Barra fans together’ award

The second Milwaukee Young Street Machine of the Year award was a cracker, taken out by  Grant Azzopardi’s epic Barra-powered ’48 Ford Anglia van. You’d be doing well to dream up a car that appeals to a wider range of enthusiasts that this little weapon.

‘Wildest twist’ award

Bruno Gianoncelli’s Mercules was a genre-busting Mercury sled, powered by a blown Ford V10 mill. It kicked-ass at shows in both Australia and the US, before disappearing off the map. We’d heard the car had gone to a collector in Turkiye, but who could have predicted the once-immaculate custom would end up on an auction site looking very sad indeed.

‘Most-epic charity road trip’ award

Tom Carriera is our kinda guy. His idea of fun was to take a barely-prepared HQ ute six pot on a road trip from Wangaratta to Cape York and back. And he did it, despite furry friend customising the HQ’s grill on the home stretch. Legend!

‘Quickst Street Machine project car ever’ award

2023 was a big year in the Carnage garage, with Scotty and videographer Matt Hull working on a tight budget to pull off a big year of content. The highlight was surely the wheelstanding antics of the Barra-powered Mazda MX-5, aka Lightning McBarra. Scotty got the little weapon down to a best of 8.22 at 173.78mph at Heathcote Park Raceway, before we called time on the project. Props to everyone who helped on the MX-5, including the guys at Maxx Performance.

‘Wildest Aussie export’ award

Kyle Douglas blew minds internationally when he flew LUXIFER to the USA to dominate the Hoonigan Burnyard at SEMA and the Cleetus & Cars event. Go you good thing!

‘Most Street Machine cover shots of all time’ award

This year snapper Chris Thorogood cracked his 100th Street Machine cover shot, which we celebrated with a Top 10 here. Tappy has been a vital part of the team for well over a decade and his collaborations with designer Povi Pullinen has lifted our cover game to new heights over the last couple of years. Thanks for being rad, mate! He’s now at 104 not out.

‘Most relentlessly street-driven cover car of 2023’ award

Heath’s UC-cum-LX Torana hatchback was a breath of fresh air when it dropped on our September cover. Influnced by 80s and 90s street machines, the LPG-powered beast has been driven all over the countryside all year long! Including plenty of Hatch Hutch camping and race track tomfoolery.