Power Touring 2013
No more complaints about the humidity in South Dakota.
I’m fresh off the road from our latest adventure on the Hot Rod Power Tour. Hang on, maybe a brief history of the Power Tour for the uninitiated first. In a nutshell, Power Tour is a seven-day car show, in seven different cities. In seven consecutive days. Yep, you gotta drive your hot rod, far. It’s expensive, grueling, and possibly the most fun you’ll have in your entire life.
The 19th annual event found us picking up where we left off last year in Arlington Texas, making stops in Texarkana and Little Rock Arkansas, Memphis, Birmingham, Chattanooga and meeting up in North Concord, NC. My initial reaction to the event is the distinct lack of Smokey and the Bandit references regarding Texarkana. Maybe if we had stretched down to Atlanta.
A few years back, we stepped up our game and got on board as The Official Gauge sponsor of the Tour, and as a result, we get a few perks. The best perk being plenty of booth space each day for swingin’ hot rods and trucks to park with us. 2013 didn’t disappoint, and we had some excellent talent join us. Being a sponsor also means we get to have some time on the main stage each day to preach to the dedicated participants. I like to do trivia; I’m not handing out Dakota Digital swag for nothing! You’ve gotta earn it around here, buddy.
Ok, getting down to what you’re all here for; the hot rods. Once again, the GM crowd made a great showing on Tour, and made us wonder where all the slick Blue Oval rods were hiding. While we’re going to present each of our booth vehicles to you in the coming months, I thought I’d whet your whistle with a sneak peak. The sun rose in Texarkana on Cloud 9, a killer 1967 C10 with a fantastic backstory that we recently highlighted in the February issue. Next to join our ranks was Joe and Sharon Lutz’ 1967 Camaro, easily identified by a vintage SCCA-inspired door number. Soft-spoken Joe appeared at our booth and declared that we needed more vintage iron to draw a crowd; he pointed me to his F body quietly sitting among the hordes and upon first glance I knew we had a winner. The LS7 topped with a Holley Hi-Ram intake, the 18” Vintage Wheels Works rollers and countless one-off details won me over. The unique look is achieved with numerous Anvil carbon fiber panels, accented with many custom-made carbon fiber details mixed in. Being a North Carolina resident, Joe stayed with us the duration of the journey; check out his shop, Hot Rod Dynamics.
Another stunner from the road was the ’70 Chevelle piloted by the father-son team of Justin and Tim Hewatt out of Georgia. Bought as a surprise graduation present and upgraded yearly, the Chevelle completed its second Long Haul and third Power Tour. A classic combo with a 454, 700R4 and a 12 bolt, the Chevelle helped America secure a world record along with 72 other cars at zMax Dragway. If you aren’t up to speed on world affairs, not long ago some hoodlums in Australia orchestrated a simultaneous burnout of 69 cars, thusly setting a world record. The people over at The Guinness Book even recognized it! While the folks at Hot Rod Magazine have a place in their heart for Aussies, they have a bigger place in their heart for America and winning. So the gauntlet was thrown and the search was on for a gaggle of automatic, non-supercharged whips capable of frying the hides for at least 10 seconds. Why the specific rules you ask? As Editor-In-Chief David Freiburger put it, “Those are insurance problems we can’t solve.” I think it has something to do with scattering parts. Hot Rod rounded up two helicopters to capture the madness, per Guinness Book rules, and promises plenty of coverage in the magazine; if you can’t wait that long, fire up your internet machine and search “Hot Rod Power Tour Burnout” and enjoy the show.
Auto Metals Direct (AMD for short) brought out their Blue Heaven ‘71 Nova to catch some rays and enthuse some eyeballs. The brilliant red interior sets off the blue paintwork, all of which rolls on a sparkly set of Schott wheels. If this car looks familiar, you may have seen it on the television program Chop, Cut, Rebuild, where it was brought back to life at the skilled hands of the AMD crew. Aptly titled ‘Novacation,’ the Nova needed a lot of rehab, and 600hp of LS power is just what the doctor ordered! A ’66 Nova dash has been inserted and stuffed with VHX instrumentation, along with a host of other mods.
While in Birmingham, our local friends at Goolsby Customs drove out two of their best rides, the LokaRS Camaro and a familiar face to Motor Market readers, the Pegasus Mustang. We covered Pegasus in a past Six Degrees feature, so look through your back issues.
After an all-night thrash, them boys from The Little Shop of Horrors drug their latest patient, a Colorado-native 1969 Suburban for us to gawk at in Chattanooga. Complete with a stellar chassis, 5.3L plucked from a Silverado, Vintage Air, Dakota Digital VHX, 22s and jaw dropping stance, the Burb drew a crowd all day. Oh, and none of the aforementioned parts were actually connected, so we pushed the thing a half-mile to the booth, then wired up the instrument system in the mid-day heat. Power Tour baby.