The Intercity Lines Road Tour kicked off at the headquarters of California Car Cover in Ch
The NSRA Street Rod Nationals Plus is the premiere event on the NSRA schedule each summer. Held in Louisville, Kentucky, at the huge Kentucky State Fairgrounds, the Nats draws street rod fans from across the country. Some folks come from as far as Southern California, which happens to be the exact place we decided to start the Intercity Lines Road Tour to the Nats.
Intercity Lines is the official car carrier of the 2010
AMSOIL/STREET RODDER Road Tour and while the Road Tour program is about driving our rods, we realize that there is a need at some point to get vehicles transported. When that time arrives we obviously want the best care available for our vehicles. That is where Intercity Lines comes in. They care about what they carry and it has shown each time we have used them. They have also worked out a special pricing structure for folks who are participating in the Road Tour program. Many rodders may not have the time to drive each way on a tour so Intercity Lines will help get your car home after a long trip.
Our destination for Friday evening was Flagstaff, AZ. We attended the local Friday night c
The Intercity Lines Tour to the Nationals was set to be the longest Tour of the 2010 season as we started in Chatsworth, California, at California Car Cover and ended over 2,000 miles later in Louisville. California Car Cover just introduced its new Golden Shine line of car care products and is the official car care company of the Road Tour series. Jim DeFrank Sr. and sons Tony and Jim Jr. and their staff were all on hand Friday morning as we set out on the long road to the Nats. We were all provided with coffee, doughnuts, and some great goodie bags that contained Golden Shine products, which would come in handy on our trip. Traveling with us on the Intercity Lines Tour was STREET RODDER magazine Publisher Tim Foss and his two sons, Jeremy and Ryder, who traveled in last year's Road Tour '52 Chevy. Super Chevy Publisher Ed Zinke was along in his '64 Chevelle convertible. CLASSIC TRUCKS Editor Jim Rizzo was driving his newly completed Model A pickup truck. It was an all-star cast heading east to Louisville.
The members of the Route 66 Car Club greeted us at the Galaxy Diner. Club President John F
At 8 a.m. it was time to roll out, with our destination for Friday evening being Flagstaff, Arizona, about 500 miles east. All went well as we crossed the Mojave Desert between Barstow and Needles. It was hot but we were all doing fine. Gassing and going as needed, we cleared Kingman and then things got very wet. In the mountains between Kingman and Flagstaff the rain got so heavy that many folks were forced to pull off the road and wait out the storm. While the rain put us behind schedule, we managed to arrive in Flagstaff wet and weary but in good shape considering the conditions.
We arrived late for our evening get-together with the Route 66 Car Club of Flagstaff at their weekly Friday night cruise at the Galaxy Diner. President John Fajardo and members of the club were out in force despite the downpours of earlier in the day. The Galaxy Diner opened in 1958 and in the '90s it had a face-lift and was redone in true '50s style. It was a fun evening with some great car people.
Saturday morning we were rolling east after our drivers' meeting. Our first stop was the famous Wigwam Motel in Holbrook, Arizona. These cement teepee-style structures have been seen on postcards and in every Route 66 book ever published. We lined the cars up and took some great pictures. Just 20 miles from Holbrook is Petrified National Forest. It is a 22-mile drive through some beautiful landscape and we got a chance to see some amazing petrified logs.
From Holbrook it's a short drive to the Petrified Forest National Park. The road meanders
After passing through Gallup, New Mexico, the rains hit us again. This time it didn't last so long. We arrived at Mild to Wild Classics in Albuquerque right on time. There to greet us was owner Tony Kos, Tony Jr., and the entire Mild to Wild crew. There were also about 75 cars and lots of local rodders. Some folks had come to town earlier in the day from Amarillo to greet us. Their four very nice street rods were damaged in a chain-reaction crash on a surface street. While all the cars were dented, no one was hurt. Tony arranged to get the cars flat-bedded back to Mild to Wild and helped the owners arrange to get their cars home. Tony and the Mild to Wild staff are great folks and all of their hard work and help was appreciated by everyone.
The Wigwam Hotel in Holbrook, AZ, is one of the most photographed spots along Route 66. We
Sunday morning we made the climb out of the Albuquerque Valley and onto Moriarty, New Mexico. I was excited to take the Road Tourians to see the collection of Archie Lewis. Archie has been collecting cars and parts for the last 60 years and his horde of vintage tin is amazing. He and Beth were again gracious hosts as we enjoyed coffee and doughnuts and got a chance to wander through the huge collection of early cars and parts. It is a mind-boggling mass of pieces and parts and always a fun stop on our tour.
We had been invited to be guests in the town of Tucumcari, New Mexico, for lunch and a visit. Tucumcari is a classic Route 66 town that is filled with buildings and memories of the time when the Mother Road went right through the city. We were met at the west entrance of the town by the chief of police, the fire chief, and five police cars and fire trucks. We made quite an entrance as we were escorted through town and onto the Tucumcari History Museum. At the museum we were served a great barbecue lunch and got a chance to see the facility and meet some of the local folks. Tucumcari is a great small town proud of its place in Route 66 history. The Road Tour will be back to explore more of Tucumcari on future tours.
From the Petrified Forest it's a winding, hilly two-lane drive back to Interstate 40. Supe
It was time to press on eastward. We had to make a stop in Amarillo to see the Cadillac Ranch and say hello to Bill and Mark Warrick at Soncy Road Body Shop. We had stopped about a month ago and were again amazed at their incredible collection of automobilia and nostalgia items. They were also gracious enough to give some of our group a hand with car problems that had cropped up. Thanks again Bill and Mark for what has become a regular stop on our Road Tour crossing Texas.
Our destination for Sunday evening was the town of Shamrock, Texas. Another Route 66 town, Shamrock has restored the old '36 Conoco gas station and adjoining diner. At sundown we were able to get some great pictures with the neon on. It was a great way to end the day.
Saturday evening in Albuquerque, NM, there was a group of local rodders who greeted us at
After our great Sunday on the Intercity Road Tour we all had dreams of Archie Lewis' collection of vintage tin being in our own back yard and our shop being filled with all the toys at the Soncy Road Body Shop. Then the alarm went off, we woke up, and it was 6 a.m. on Monday. Instead of heading off to work, though, we were headed down the highway on the road to Louisville.
Our first stop of the day on Monday was the Oklahoma Route 66 Museum in Clinton, Oklahoma. I had stopped at the museum way back in 1996 when it had just opened and I was in the first year of the Road Tour. As we walked through the museum I remembered the interesting displays that told the story of the Mother Road. Each display covers a different era in the history of Route 66, from the construction of the road in the '20s to the end of the Route 66 era in the '70s. It is a great stop that doesn't take a lot of time but is very interesting and informative.
Before we headed out from the Lewis Antique Auto and Toy Museum, Archie Lewis, in his sign
From the Oklahoma Route 66 Museum, the main group headed toward Alton, Oklahoma, the home of Darryl Starbird's Rod and Custom Hall of Fame and Museum. It was a four-hour drive and we arrived around 4 p.m. Darryl greeted us and gave us some background about the Hall of Fame and some history of his amazing career in the car customizing business. The museum contains many of Darryl's famous show cars and also includes many other significant rods and customs. The Hall of Fame has walls that are tributes to the people who have been inducted over the years. Most of the famous builders of the past and many present builders have a section in the Hall of Fame. After our tour we were treated to great burgers and beverages in the backyard of Darryl and Donna Starbird's home. It was a very cool evening with one of the true icons and nice guys of our hobby. Thanks to the Starbirds for welcoming us to their Hall of Fame Museum and their home.
The Sunday afternoon lunch stop was Tucumcari, NM. The folks of Tucumcari really rolled ou
We got a very early start on Tuesday because we had almost 450 miles to travel to arrive at COMP Cams in Memphis. After our 7 a.m. drivers' meeting we made the 30-minute drive to Odd Rods in Carl Junction, Missouri, near Joplin. Operated by Rusty Jackson, Odd Rods has come onto the scene recently with two very high-end Packard street rods. We were greeted at Odd Rods by Rusty, Linda (his Mom), brothers Ryan and Randy, and many local customers and friends. Besides the two Packards, we got a look at some of the projects that are on deck at Odd Rods. Rusty is another one of the new young builders who is bringing some new creativity and energy to our hobby.
From Odd Rods we headed out on our 400-mile trip to COMP Cams in Memphis, Tennessee. Our route took us past Springfield, Missouri, and through some very beautiful portions of the Ozark area of Missouri and Arkansas. We arrived in Memphis on a day that was setting records for heat and the humidity was at about 100 percent. After fighting some traffic tie-ups we all finally arrived at COMP Cams by 5 p.m. We were greeted by Hailey Douglas and her team from the marketing department at COMP Cams. We were given an in-depth tour of their huge facility, which includes many of their different divisions and manufacturing facilities. Provisions had been made for the folks at COMP Cams to install one of their new FAST EZ-EFI injection systems on the '52 Chevy. While work began on that installation we were treated to Memphis barbecue and door prizes were handed out to some lucky Road Tourians. Many thanks to Hailey and to all the folks at COMP Cams who made our Tuesday evening visit very special.
There's nowhere else where you can find the vintage tin that you will see at Archie Moore'
On Wednesday it was rise and shine. It was time to get to Louisville and the huge NSRA Street Rod Nationals Plus. It was a six-hour drive to Louisville and we made it while enduring some record-setting temperatures. When we arrived at the Kentucky State Fairgrounds the thermometer had hit 102 degrees F. Things were in full swing at both the registration area and at the fairgrounds where vendor set up was taking place. We settled into our hotels and anticipated the opening of the event on Thursday morning.
The Intercity Lines Tour to the NSRA Street Rod Nationals had been full of adventure and fun. As is the case with all of our tours, we were able to visit some fantastic collections of vehicles, meet some great car folks, and enjoy some wonderful meals and camaraderie with folks who enjoy street rods as much as we do. Thanks to everyone who made the trip so enjoyable. It was a great weekend as the Street Rod Nationals with the weather report calling for sunny skies Friday, Saturday, and Sunday proved to be correct.
The 2010 AMSOIL/STREET RODDER season continues as the Dynamat Tour leaves from the Street Rod Nationals Plus in Louisville and heads to the hallowed ground of the Bonneville Salt Flats and Speed Week.
You can check out our Bonneville Dynamat adventure on page 142 of this issue.
Saturday morning we headed out under some cloudy skies and a little rain. Interstate 40 is
Our destination was the Historical Museum. The street was blocked off to provide a place f
After a stop at the Cadillac Ranch it was a short drive to Soncy Road Body Shop in Amarill
Monday morning we made a brief stop at the Oklahoma Route 66 Museum in Clinton. The displa
Sunday evening at sunset we arrived in Shamrock, TX. This beautiful Conoco gas station was
Darryl Starbird's Rod and Custom Hall of Fame and Museum is located in Afton, OK, off of I
Darryl has been an innovator and trendsetter in our hobby for over 50 years. He met us in
Early Tuesday morning we stopped at the Odd Rods street rod shop in Carl Junction near Jop
Our tour at COMP Cams included the manufacturing facilities, and research and development
Besides the tour, we were also treated to some authentic Memphis barbecue. The folks at CO
After a long day of driving on Tuesday, we reached COMP Cams headquarters in Memphis, TN.
On display in the museum was the replica of the famous Big T. Darryl built the original ba
While at COMP Cams, their technicians installed one of their new FAST EZ-EFI systems on ou
After six days and 2,000 miles on the Intercity Lines Road Tour we finally reached our des
To say it was hot was an understatement. The 102 on this sign refers to the temperature, n