Born in Los Angeles, Xydias was an influential figure in the early days of the auto racing sport involving hot rods. In 1946, immediately after Xydias was discharged from the United States Army Air Corps after serving as a B-17 engineer, he opened the So-Cal Speed Shop in Burbank, one of the first hot rod shops in Southern California. In 1950, he was the first person to break the 200 mph barrier with his hot rod named the "So-cal-Streamliner". He was also a moviemaker back in the days before TV the way you saw the Indy 500 or Sebring was to go see Xydias footage shot at the event. Xydias would shoot it, process it, and show it in a local theater soon afterward.