The Dynamat Tour kicked off a week on the road with a get-together at the NSRA Street Rod Nationals plus in Louisville, Kentucky. The participants on the Tour gathered at the Street Rodder Magazine display in the exhibit building on Saturday at noon to pose for a group picture with all of the Road Tourians that were in attendance at the Nationals. This Road Tour reunion has become an anticipated annual event at Louisville. After the large group shot, just the Dynamat participants posed for a picture together. Then the itineraries, goodie bags and T-shirts were distributed to the anxious Dynamat participants. We then walked as a group down to the Dynamat booth the far end of the huge exhibit building. Dynamat President Scott Whitaker greeted the group and spoke briefly about our upcoming trip to Speed Week at the Salt Flats. We were then all given a goodie bag that contained a cool Dynamat baseball cap and sun glasses that will both come in handy on the salt flats.
Sunday afternoon about 4 p.m. after the awards ended we headed north and arrived in Indianapolis for the evening. Everyone in the group got a chance to meet and greet each other and check out the vehicles that would be traveling on the Tour. There were 35 cars registered and fifty people were making the trip. The group was mixed with folks from across the country. There were also two groups of folks from Australia that were traveling with us. Cars ranged from traditional street rods to some later model street machines. Also joining us on the trip to Bonneville was Street Rodder Magazine Associate Editor Tim Bernsau who was piloting '52 Chevy from last years Road Tour. After some supper we all headed to our rooms in anticipation of the week ahead.
Monday morning's driver's meeting was held at 8 a.m. and we went over the schedule for the week and some of the logistics of travelingon a Road Tour. It was then time to head northeast for the two hour drive to Manteno, Illinois and the shop of Rad Rides by Troy. Upon arrival we were greeted by Troy Trepanier and the crew at Rad Rides. For the last twenty years Troy and his staff of incredible craftsmen have built some of the finest street rods and street machines on the planet. From the Sniper to the Ridler winning First Love, the cars have captured awards and accolades at every major car show and event in the nation. We were given a tour by Troy and the staff and got an up-close look at all of their latest projects. It was then time for some great Mexican lunch as everyone enjoyed the tacos from a local restaurant. By 1 p.m. we all headed out. We knew that between us and our evening stop in Racine, Wisconsin was some very busy freeways around Chicago.
As it turned out the freeway was running fairly smooth for a change and we actually made it to our destination of the Radisson Hotel on the Harbor in Racine by about 4 p.m. The hotel was located right on the water and the view was fantastic, At 5 p. m. as planned we all gathered in the hotel lobby and walked about four blocks to the Yardarm Pub for dinner. Road Tourian Tim Caffery's wife Lisa and her sister own the Yardarm and had graciously invited us to enjoy a special meal in the banquet room of the restaurant. There were over forty hungry Road Tourians that really appreciated the meal and the hospitality. After dinner we made the short walk back to the Radisson and retired for the evening.
Tuesday we were up and rolling after our 8 a.m. driver's meeting. Our destination for a morning visit was the new Harley Davidson Museum about 45 minutes north in Milwaukee. We arrived by 9 a.m. and were greeted by Beth from the museum staff. The museum was amazing with an incredible number of motorcycles and displays that told the history of the Harley Davidson Company and motorcycling in general. The three floors were filled with bikes and memorabilia. Also on display in a separate building was a special limited engagement exhibit that told the story of Evel Knievel and his career that made him a legend. We all had a great time at the Harley-Davidson Museum and strongly recommend that you stop if you are in the Milwaukee area.
It was then a five hour drive across Wisconsin to LaCross and then north along the Mississippi River on the Minnesota side. It was a beautiful late afternoon drive along the Mississippi. We arrived at the Treasure Island Resort and Casino about one hour ahead of some strong thunderstorms. We were in for the evening and there was plenty to do inside.
Wednesday morning we continue our trek to Speed Week in Wendover, Utah. We have plenty of stops to make before we arrive at the salt flats. We will visit some private car collections, tour the facilities at Dakota Digital in Sioux Falls and stop at Larry Ruth's Street Rod Shop in Spearfish, South Dakota. Our stop in the Black Hills also coincides with Sturgis Bike Week so it should be exciting. Check back here for all the latest updates as the Dynamat tour heads to Bonneville an Speed Week.