Monday on the Factory Five Racing Tour was one of the fullest days of activity that we have ever seen on an AMSOIL/Street Rodder Road Tour. The day included some history lessons, some very exciting laps on a NASCAR race course and a visit to one of the nicest hot rod shops in the nation. Beginning in Portsmouth the day began with our usual morning drivers meeting as the details of the days activities were discussed.
Our first stop was at the USS Albacore submarine which is on exhibit near downtown Portsmouth. The Albacore was built in 1952 in Portsmouth and served in the Navy from 1953 to 1972. It was the first of the modern submarines with a cylindrical hull that is the standard shape of the modern submarines. During its years of service it set speed records for submarines during the 50's and 60's. In 1985, after years of inactivity, it was brought back to Portsmouth and put on display. It was a very interesting tour as we were able to walk through the ship and imagine what life on a submarine was like.
From the USS Albacore in was just a five minute drive to downtown Portsmouth. Our stop and visit for the morning in Portsmouth was at the Strawbery Banke village and museum. This collection of buildings dates back to the earliest settlers of New England. Saved from demolition in 1958, the collection of 32 buildings represent life in the early days of Portsmouth and our nation. The folks at the museum were excited to see our group of vehicles and invited us to drive in and park on the lawn. Also visiting Strawbery Banke on the same day was a group of Hupmobile owners who were also invited to drive their classics on to the grounds. It was a nice mix of hot rods and Hubmobiles on display among the historic buildings.
After our visit at Strawbery Banke and some lunch in historic downtown Porstmouth it was time to get back on the highway. Our destination for the afternoon was the New Hampshire International Raceway about one hour away in Loudon, New Hampshire. It was a great drive through the New Hampshire countryside. When we arrived we were greeted by track officials and a pace car. Arrangements had been made and we were actually permitted to make a few laps on the road course that had been set up for the day. It was very exciting as we put our vehicles through their paces on the track. Thanks to all the folks at New Hampshire Raceway for making our afternoon a very exciting one.
Our final stop for the day was at Lowery's Auto Restorations in nearby Tilton, New Hampshire. Started by Jim Lowry Sr. fifty years ago the quality craftsman ship has continued with Jim Lowry Jr. We were greeted by Jim Lowry Sr. Jim Lowry Jr. and family. It is an unbelievable facility that is a cross between a horse farm and a horsepower farm. Lowery's specialize in high end auto restoration and construction of period perfect hot rods. Their work has been shown at Pebble Beach and on the pages of Street Rodder Magazine. We enjoyed some great pizza and got a chance to enjoy their beautiful shop and setting in the countryside of New Hampshire.
It was a quite a day on the Factory Five Tour. Next up we visit two more famous shops in New England. We will stop at Rolling Bones Hot Rods in Saratoga Springs, New York and Tucci Engineering near Utica as we make our way to the Syracuse Nationals at the New York State Fairgrounds. Check back for all the details of our travels. Look at the Road Tour schedule here at our website and try to join us on a future Tour. Call the Road tour Hotline at 1-800-664-1362 for all the latest updates.