Challenge Met

As the saying goes, "You win some, you lose some." And while the Craftsman Comet-R didn't win the Duel in the Desert, the winner of the Craftsman Challenge voting bracket made it through the first round of the finals! Congrats, Mike Young...AKA "Roadster Mike"!

Craftsman Club

‘65 Mercury Comet Caliente
  • Transmission:


  • Wheel Base:

    114 INCHES

  • Suspension:


Mike Young

‘65 Ford Mustang
  • Transmission:

    Borg Warner T-5

  • Wheel Base:

    108 Inches

  • Suspension:

    Stock Style With Hotchkis Sport Suspension TVS

Congrats to David BartenHagen ...
Winner of Our Bracket Voting Sweeps!

He earned tickets to the Goodguys Southwest Nationals November 14 - 16, 2014 in ScottsDale, AZ, and watched our '65 Comet-R compete against the '65 Mustang!

Meet the Team

mercury caliente

A Brief History of the Comet


Comet introduced as a compact
car for the Edsel line.


Joins the Mercury
car line.


V8 and convertible
versions debut.


Caliente trim package


Serves as official pace car
for the big race at Indy.


Comet renamed the
Cyclone GT.

The Crew

kevin tully

Kevin Tully


Ask Kevin Tully if he's a master builder, and he will quickly set you straight. "Master Builder is a TV title," he says. "I'm always learning something new."

Tully attended the University Of Alaska for Welding Technologies and then went to the U.S. Air Force and their Aircraft Fabricators School at Aberdeen Proving Grounds, MD. After that he moved on to Autofab Racecars, where he studied under Mark Constantine and learned all about chassis engineering and monster horsepower. "My goal is to bring old-school craftsmanship and tradition back to today's hot rodding, as well as bring the trades back into focus for today's youth."

Favorite shop music: Creedence Clearwater Revival and (when he's alone in the shop) EDM

keith grashorn

Keith Grashorn

Sheet Metal Fabricator/Shop Chief

A former U.S. Air Force helicopter crew chief, Keith started working on cars as a boy, helping his father restore old World War II trucks. Now, as Shop Chief of HRCC, he counts his father Dennis as one of the employees he oversees.

On his own time, Keith puts in work on his passion project, a 1964 Plymouth. "It's not running yet, but it will."

Favorite shop music: Led Zeppelin, Metallica

drew stiles

Drew Tyne-Stiles

Sheet Metal Fabricator

Drew comes from a drag racing family. "My family garage has a car lift; that pretty much tells you how I grew up."

His first car project was a 1951 Chevy pickup truck, which he never finished. "I started taking it apart, and the whole thing just fell apart on me. I guess I was in a little over my head, but that's how you learn."

Since then, Drew has started many car projects but has never completed one. "I got wicked ADD," he says. "But I did finish my bike this year. That was a smaller project. You know, baby steps."

Favorite shop music: mostly punk, Rancid, The Distillers

john thomas

John Thomas


The newest member of the HRCC crew, John has been working in the shop for two months, but he brings a decade of industrial welding experience. "I was a professional welder for many years before working on cars, but there's a limit to the punishment your body can take when you are working in industrial sites."

His first job working on cars was welding in a high performance auto shop. "It was the kind of place where we were putting 1,000 horsepower in Hondas. It was Fast and Furious-type cars, but without the nonsense lights and the loud paint jobs."

Now that he is at HRCC he is looking to take his skills to the next level. "Ideally, I want to learn more about fabricating. I think that's the next step."

Favorite shop music: metal ("I like it fast and loud.")

chris duke

Chris Duke

Automotive Expert

An executive producer and host of "Motorz" as well as an official Craftsman® Tool Advisor, Chris is a true gearhead with nearly three decades of hands-on vehicle customization.

In addition to hosting over 80 episodes of the nationally televised "Motorz" series — which has covered everything from suspension, performance, electronics and appearance — Chris is also the host of the Mobil 1 "Auto Center," a web series designed to help viewers keep their cars looking great and engines running like new.

Prior to his television career, Chris held the additional titles of editor, writer and photographer for automotive magazines, cranking out over 300 pages of editorial content which were published nationally on major newsstands.

Favorite shop music: classic rock, '80s, top 40 and country ("We mix it up depending on our mood.")

juan antonio del rosario

Juan Antonio
del Rosario


Juan Antonio is a filmmaker based in Chicago. His work ranges from narrative feature films and documentaries to commercial work. He will be the first to admit he didn't know the first thing about cars when the Made to Race project began, but was immediately fascinated by them as symbols of American identity.

"The deeper we researched the history of American cars, the more we realized how intertwined they are with American history. Through time, cars have been the most immediate reflection of American society."

Favorite shop music: Bob Dylan and the rest of the ‘60s rock station playlist

julie kayaian

Julie Kayaian

Craftsman Club Moderator

Having moderated the Craftsman Community for the past 3 years, Julie loves the brand and the folks who visit every day. She is looking forward to watching the Hot Rod Chassis & Cycle team transformation this year and will be around to field your questions or comments on the Restoration Rollout. Feel free to contact her directly at

Julie's Craftsman Club Profile

bryan mikulich

Bryan Mikulich

Craftsman Club
Auto Enthusiast & Roadster Shop,
Chassis & Turnkey Solutions

Now having been in the Hot Rod & Custom Car Industry for over 10 years, like many Bryan grew up turning wrenches on cars and trucks with his dad. He can't leave anything alone when it comes to cars. He says it has to be loud as hell... go fast... and drag the ground. With 20+ years of sales experience, Bryan helps professional car builders build and design the perfect foundation for their projects. "Just being around people that share the same passion for automobiles makes it the best job in the world," he says. His all-time favorite ride is the 1967 Chevelle SS that he currently owns.

Favorite Shop Music: The Kinks, Social Distortion, Lady GaGa (just kidding)

Bryan's Craftsman Club Profile

chad hill

Chad Hill


Chad Hill's self description says it all: "I'm a designer, an artist and a gearhead."

For the past 21 years, Hill has been a graphic designer and art director in Chicago. His design company, Django Studios, focuses on creating graphic and design material for the aftermarket automotive industry. At HRCC, Hill is in charge of all the design work, from the look of the gauges on the dashboard, to the paint design of the car.

In his spare time, Hill paints nose art on WWII aircraft.

Favorite shop music: rockabilly, big band and hair metal

dennis grashorn

Dennis Grashorn


The source of wisdom in the crew, at 63 Dennis is the most experienced fabricator in the shop. "The best thing about this job," he says, "is that you can be creative, and that keeps your mind young." Throughout his vast career he has restored cars, trucks, steam engines and even World War II planes.

Dennis started fabricating when he was 18 years old, and by the time his son Keith was 4 years old, Dennis was teaching him the basics of car mechanics. The early start he provided for his son was a continuation of a family tradition. "I could change the oil in grade school."

On his off-time, he is an assistant curator at the Illinois Railroad Museum, specializing in restoring steam engines. He is also a World War II re-enactor.

Favorite shop music: Buddy Holly, The Platters, The Beach Boys

matt duque

Matt Duque


A natural jokester, Matt also started working on cars at a young age. "My stepfather would let me hang out when he was working on cars, and that's where I started."

He has worked at several auto shops, but HRCC has turned out to be his favorite. "Everyone here has a separate set of skills, so they all complement each other. You're always learning."

His other favorite aspect of HRCC is the shop's healthy obsession with car culture. "Here, you really learn the history of the cars you are building. There is always a reason behind every decision that is made regarding the car build."

Favorite shop music: anything heavy, metal and crazy

alan taylor

Alan Taylor

Automotive Expert

Alan is an automotive expert and award-winning host with over 30 years of broadcast experience. He's been featured on popular shows like ABC’s "Live with Kelly & Michael," as well as the CBS, CNN, FOX, NBC and Speed Channel networks.

andre durand

Andre Durand


Andre is a New York-based cinematographer. He has shot music videos for Bon Iver, commercial videos for Target and fashion designer Nicole Miller, as well as narrative films. He owns a 1941 Chevy Master Deluxe, which immediately earned him serious street cred in the shop.

Favorite shop music: The Stray Cats and a lot of Johnny Cash

danny mota

Danny Mota

Social Content Creator

A born and bred Chicagoan, Danny still drives a manual transmission car because driving isn't really driving to him otherwise. He has a passion for photography/videography, and will be part of the team that is capturing and sharing Restoration Rollout content online socially for Craftsman.

Favorite shop music: everything from Nina Simone, Red Hot Chili Peppers to Outkast

rohan thadani

Rohan Thadani

Community Manager

An artist and an activist, some of Rohan's favorite memories have happened behind the wheel of his car as he was crisscrossing the country. He has the uncanny ability to drive hundreds of miles straight through the night and into the sunrise. He will be part of the team amplifying Restoration Rollout across the social sphere.

Favorite shop music: remixed classics

dan swanson

Dan Swanson

Engineering Manager Craftsman Tools

Dan is certainly the biggest gearhead on the Craftsman tools brand team. He is well versed with body & paint work, however he's not afraid to try anything. With a little bit of homework he can be dangerous; Engine building to frame building, also boats & bikes... he's done it. He's owned the same 56 Chevy 2 door sedan for 31 years, and that car has seen several engines.....most of them big block Chevys.

Between vehicles, boats and spare engines; he currently owns 7 big block Chevy engines. However, Dan is venturing into the Chevy LSX world with a corner carving 6 speed 73 Chevy Vega wagon.

Favorite Shop Music: Metallica and Red Hot Chili Peppers

james maclachlan

James "Mac"

Craftsman Club Auto Enthusiast

Mac grew up the son of a diesel mechanic who thought one of the most important things in life for his son was to ensure he knew how to take care of things and what to do when they broke. He spent a career in the U.S. Air Force leveraging his teaching and, naturally, it spilled over to his hobbies. While he's an avid outdoorsman, his true love is restoring Mustangs. Collectively, he has owned 18 Mustangs from 1966 all the way up to his current 2007 ‐ his favorite was the 1969 Boss 302. These days his wrenching is mostly done on his Jeep Wrangler, adding this or that little extra to increase performance or protect it while on the trails.

Favorite shop music: changes from contemporary Christian to the '70s since that was his time growing up!

Mac's Craftsman Club Profile