Friday's destination was the...
Friday's destination was the NSRA Golden State Nationals at the Cal-Expo Center in Sacramento. It was a great way to wrap up an amazing week on the Sherm's Custom Plating Tour.
SO-CAL of Sacramento and Sherm's Plating then treated us to a great tri-tip steak and chicken dinner at the Uptown Café. The food was delicious! After dinner it was a short drive to SO-CAL's very cool retail store on Del Paso where there was a party thrown in our honor Wednesday evening. Thanks to all the folks at SO-CAL of Sacramento for a great evening.
Thursday morning we made the short drive to Rio Linda and the fantastic shop of Tim Lohrey. Tim's Hot Rods has been producing high-quality street rods and customs for quite a few years. We were greeted by Lohrey and his wife, Christina, and daughter, Kaitlyn. Lohrey invited some local rodders and we were treated to a tour of the huge facility followed by a very enjoyable and very tasty sit-down breakfast. It was a great way to start what would be another incredible day on the Sherm's Custom Plating Tour.
From Tim's Hot Rods we drove into Sacramento and visited a legend in the custom car and hot rod world. Dick Bertolucci has been involved in customizing cars since the '40s and has worked with icons such as Harry Westergard and Sam and George Barris. We stood in awe as Bertolucci related stories of the early years in the hot rod scene. We were able to see his first early custom, a '38 Chevy that he was able to recently reacquire after many years. We also saw the incredible hot rods and customs that he has built over the last six decades. It was an honor and a privilege to be in the presence of such a legend and all-around great guy. Bertolucci is truly one of our last links to the colorful early years of our hobby.
From Bertolucci's shop it was a short drive to the warehouse museum of John Cox. Cox is a drag racer and car collector who has had the automobilia bug for many years. We were greeted by Cox, his son, Terry, and their crew who helps keep the collection in top shape. They also help campaign the vintage rail dragster that Terry drives at many of the vintage races. Cox's collection is so huge and diverse that it was hard to take it all in, in only a few hours. There were great brats on the grill and the Road Tourians enjoyed Cox's collection of automobilia and nostalgia plus the largest collection of '58 Chevys I've ever seen. One of my personal favorite parts of Cox's collection was the vintage slot car track. I spent many afternoons of my youth at slot car tracks and really enjoyed getting the controller back in my hand.
After our visit at Cox's collection, many of the Road Tourians stopped at the California State Railroad Museum in the Old Sacramento section of downtown. From there it was off to our hotel to try to digest the amazing things that we had seen that day.
It was a great weekend at the NSRA Golden State Nationals. The AMSOIL/STREET RODDER hospitality tent was a center of activity all weekend. It was the perfect way to cap off the unbelievable week we'd spent on the Sherm's Custom Plating Tour. Thanks to Gary Matranga and Sherm's for their help and support and thanks to the folks who greeted us along the way. It was a week that will go down in Road Tour history.
We have one more to go as the NHRA Wally Parks Museum Tour kicks off at Morrison Enterprises in Fife, Washington, and takes a very beautiful drive to the California Hot Rod Reunion in Bakersfield with many great stops along the way.