Meet The Team

Meet The Team

  • J. Bittle J. Bittle J. Bittle Operating Manager

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    Experience:
    • Began playing with cars in 1972 in High School…driving my Dad’s Opel Rally Cadet 1900cc 4-speed!

    • Arrived at JBA: 1985 after Joe Drew turned down opening up a department in Drew Ford.

    • Favorite car: 1967 Shelby GT500

  •  John Gerardy John Gerardy John Gerardy CFO

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    Experience:
    • Began playing with cars in 1958 - model cars & 1966 - real cars.

    • Arrived at JBA: Helped J get started in 1985.

    • Favorite car: Cobras

  • Vickie Bittle Vickie Bittle Vickie Bittle Controller

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    Experience:
    • I have always loved cars and their makers

    • My dad bought, fixed and sold used cars

    • Met J., joined the Texas A&M Sports Car Club and bought a 1969 Mach 1 428SCJ—all in the same year!

    • Favorite cars: 1965 Shelby; 1990s Taurus SHO & F150, 2012 Mustang Boss 302

    • Fun fact: Loves loud cars with visibility!

  • Bruce Tucker Bruce Tucker Bruce Tucker GM

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    Experience:
    • Skateboards…bicycles…go carts…minibikes…and on to cars by the time I was 13 years old.

    • Arrived at JBA: as a customer, I bought an 8.8 rear end assembly from JBA in 1986. Came to work full time at JBA in 2002.

    • Favorite car: The 1959 Austin Healey 100-6 with a small block Chevy I built in high school.

  • Austin Bittle Austin Bittle Austin Bittle Parts Manager

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    Experience:
    • Began learning about cars via a 1966 Ford Fairlane 500XL with a 390

    • Arrived at JBA in 1987 in a baby seat in the back of a Mustang SVO

    • Graduated from Texas A&M like both my parents, my brother, and my grandfather

    • Favorite Car: 1969 Ford Mustang Mach 1 SCJ

  • John Elderhorst John Elderhorst J.Elderhorst Master Engine Builder

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    Experience:
    • ASE Certified Master Engine Machinist

    • Began working on cars as a teenager

    • Started working with J. in Texas 1980

    • Arrived at JBA when it was located on Daggett Street

    • Favorite cars: 1968 Charger; 1967 Buick GS and 1973 SD Trans Am

  • Mike Hill Mike Hill Mike Hill Parts & Service

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    Experience:
    • 50 years of automotive experience

    • Been working at JBA 15 years

    • Favorite car: My 2002 Ford Mustang convertible

  • Gary Wilkey Gary Wilkey Gary Wilkey Lead Machinist

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    Experience:
    • Started working on a ’37 Chevy Pick Up while at Norco High School in SoCal

    • Today, focuses on motors, bore blocks, crankshafts, rods, heads and surfacing

    • Favorite Car: 1967 Camaro…Best Car Ever!

  • Mike Evans Mike Evans Mike Evans Race Coordinator

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    Experience:
    • Built a 1961 Ford Falcon model at age 12; took auto shop in high school and I was hooked

    • First Car: 1960 Corvair with no second gear and an oil slick that remains in front of my childhood home 50 years later

    • Wish I Still Had: 1965 Chevelle Malibu SS which I paid $1,200 for and in which my wife, Susie, and I, drove and, uh, shared together

    • Favorite Car: My 2012 Boss 302 or, as Carroll Shelby says, “my next Shelby Mustang”

  • Tim Naylor Tim Naylor Tim Naylor Shop Foreman

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    Experience:
    • In 1989, talked my father into fronting me $300 for a 1969 Chevy Chevelle with 105,000 miles on it and a flat cam

    • Started at JBA a decade ago

    • Favorite Car: Always love your first! That 1969 Chevelle! There’s about a dozen close seconds

  • Rick Ball Rick Ball Rick Ball Performance Tech

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    Experience:
    • Over 30 years in the high performance automotive industry

    • Love working with turbos, nitrous oxide systems and all things that make cars go fast

  • Tim Naylor Jr. Tim Naylor Jr. Tim Naylor Jr. Performance Tech

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    Experience:
    • Graduated from high school in Connecticut with an automotive tech specialty

    • Works on engines, transmissions, brakes, suspensions and diagnostics

    • Favorite Car: 1969 Chevelle SS

  • Alex Conger Alex Conger Alex Conger Performance Plumbing Tech & HP Specialist

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    Experience:
    • Born and raised in San Diego; graduated from Clairemont High School

    • When I was five years old, my neighbors were always working on hot rods; I started working on tossed carburetors shortly thereafter

    • Been working with J Bittle since 1999

  • Rusty Staley Rusty Staley Rusty Staley Performance Tech

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    Experience:
    • Grew up in Peoria, Illinois and Topeka, Kansas; started working on domestic cars and hot rods with the next door neighbor as a kid; took shop classes and ‘lived’ at the race track as a teen

    • Served our country in the United States Navy for 20 years

    • 2018 Barona Speed Stock Pony Champion driving a 1974 Ford Pinto w/164 HP!

    • Favorite Car: My 1971 Chevy Nova

  • Rob Kulp Jr. Rob Kulp Jr. Rob Kulp Jr. Inventory Specialist

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    Experience:

    Born and raised in San Diego; graduated from El Capitan HS in Lakeside

    Father and grandfather are both mechanics and cars have always been part of my family

    Been at JBA three years—"since 15 days past my 18th birthday”

    Favorite Car: “My 1996 Mustang GT which I bought from Austin Bittle and which I work on weekends at home.”

  • Michael Yanez Michael Yanez Michael Yanez Inventory Control/HP Parts Specialist

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    Experience:
    • Grandfather left me his 1966 Chevy Malibu when I was 12. I took it apart and rebuilt it.

    • Worked well over a decade for Checker/O’Reilly and Auto Zone as a store manager

    • Favorite Car: My 2017 Mustang GT Performance Back.

  • Benjamin Gibson Benjamin Gibson Benjamin Gibson Administration, Graphic Design

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    Experience:
    • Lived in Ecuador, India, the Philippines and New Mexico growing up; father was a missionary

    • Family has always been into cars; great grandfather was the town mechanic; grandfather worked in that shop; my dad owned a 1969 Dodge Challenger and currently owns a 1932 Ford Model A.

    • Favorite Car: 1965 Mustang, which my grandfather and I worked on and which I still have!

  • Artie Bonillas Artie Bonillas Artie Bonillas Concierge

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    Experience:
    • Passion for cars began at age seven when my dad bought me a slot car; I was racing around the track the next day

    • Nailed my skates to a box and made a coaster; then, found a bike frame, painted it purple and scrounged up the missing pieces to create the first BMX bike ever!

    • Philosophy: “If you put enough of the right parts together, whatever you’re putting together will move!”

  • David Mercer David Mercer David Mercer Inventory Specialist

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    Experience:
    • “Cars? It’s a family thing. My grandfather and dad were both mechanics. I raced as a teenager and drag raced a bit while in the Navy.”

    • Served eight years as an aviation sonar warfare specialist

    • Favorite Car: “I’m a MOPAR guy!”

  • Lee Sweitzer Lee Sweitzer Lee Sweitzer Service Coordinator

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    Experience:
    • Dad was a drag racer and I grew up around tracks in Phoenix and later SoCal

    • Started racing at 16!

    • Served in the United States Marine Corps for eight years and drove big trucks

    • Favorite Car: 1993 Fox Body Cobra

  • Chris Maile Chris Maile Chris Maile Technician

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    Experience:
    • “I got a car before I got a computer and I’ve been wrenching ever since!”

    • Holds an Automotive Technician and Management degree

    • “My dad bought mom a 1971 Mach I four-speed. Mom couldn’t drive it! When my dad, brothers and I worked on the car, he’d say we were doing it for mom but really it was for us. We called it ‘the bonding vehicle.’”

    • Favorite Car: My 1968 Dodge Cornet 440

  • Steven Esquilin Steven Esquilin Steven Esquilin Technician

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    Experience:

    Grew up in Pacific Beach and Mira Mesa; Dad was a Master Gunnery Sergeant in the USMC.

    “I served our country in the United States Army. I earned a Bronze Star & Medal of Valor as a member of Army Airborne and Air Assault.”

    Aviation has always been part of my family; Purchased first aircraft in Stuttgart, Germany. Earned two federal licenses as an Inspector Agent. “Flying has always been a hobby. I met J Bittle through an aircraft client of mine. Now, I work on vehicles like I did fixing Jeeps in the Army. I can fix almost anything mechanical.”

    Favorite Car: My dad’s 1976 Chevy Super Sport.