Texas Motor Speedway has a reputation of being one of the country’s fastest tri-ovals with steep, banked turns and thunderous long straightaways. The track slogan, “No Limits” applies to wide open racing, colorful characters and the thrill of speed. No Limits applies to hot rods and custom cars as much as it does to race cars. Last weekend’s 24th Lone Star Nationals offered a limitless landscape of chrome, candy, and wide smiles. With three brilliant sunny days, an infield full of color, and a midway full of performance parts made it one of the best ever. The speedway simply came alive!
With a car count hovering around the 2,700 mark and tens of thousands of sun-soaked fans reveling in the realm of rods, the scene was electric. A big turnout of our industry’s top builders fielded entries over the weekend giving our official Builder’s Choice award selector, Kenny Davis, plenty of options for his Top 10. Jason Graham, Dave Kindig, Jonathan Goolsby and Josh Henning, Phil and Jeremy Gerber, Hills Hot Rods, Mitch Henderson, Tim Strange, Mike Rutter, Dustin Foust, and so many others fielded entries.
It was also a big weekend for Goodguys Top 12 award action. We selected the last round of finalists for our Truck of the Year (both Early and Late), Muscle Car of the Year, and finally the last Muscle Machine of the Year candidate. Congratulations and good luck to Rod Parsons (’67 Chevy C/10 TOYL), Chris Carlson (1940 Ford Pickup TOYE), Rod Shotwel (1967 Factory Hemi S/S MCOY) and Tom Demrovsky (’66 Chevelle MMOY).
All weekend long, the sound of V8 thunder filled the air. Between the Team Texas stock car rides, and the pavement pounding Goodguys AutoCross, those who prefer the sounds instead of the sights were in luck. Texas’ own Mike DuSold and his wicked twin-turbocharged Camaro held serve outlasting his heel-nippers to take the PRO class AutoCross crown with a 44.786 best lap.
One can’t help but notice how competitive this event is. With a large track, engines get stretched and some drivers manage to pull second gear in spots. Other big weekend winners included Ryan Harris (’65 Mustang – Street Machine 47.568), Stan Martin (1930 Ford – Hot Rod 53.765), Brandon Carter (’72 Dodge D100 – Truck 52.667) and Aaron Sockwell (2015 Ford Mustang – K & N Filters All American Sunday 49.040
More than any other recent event on our event tour, the 24th Lone Star Nationals featured an abundance of fun attractions. We had motorcycle stunt men courtesy of TEAM FMX – the same crew that lit up the sky earlier this year in Des Moines. Some riders had to be at least 100 feet in the air. It was insane! We also had ear-splitting and eye-watering V8 thunder in the form of the Goodguys Nitro Thunderfest. The Jenkins, T-Bar & Cortines front engine fueler had the deepest, throaty pop but the Scorpion, and other Texas top fuelers made their presence known popping hard for the assembled crowds.
Come Saturday afternoon, all attention was focused on the high banks of TMS. Led by the Goodguys 2016 Hall of Fame Road Tour cars, the Saturday Track Cruise kicked off, taking over 1,000 vintage cars around the track with No Limits. To see the looks on the drivers’ faces when they’re barreling down the front stretch is simply priceless. For those that left a little early Saturday, we cruised TMS again on Sunday making sure nobody went home without the chance to channel Tony Stewart.
The wide open weekend of Southwest fun had something for everyone including the little rodders as face painting, the Revell Model Car Make & Take, model car show, and pedal car show offered hours of endless fun. Speaking of endless hours, the Lone Star Corvette Club has to be thanked for working right alongside our Goodguys staff every step of the way. From ‘50s ‘Vettes to stunning C3’s, these guys have the goods! Some members even brought out their late model C6 and C7 Stingrays during the K & N Filters All American Sunday action.
With the Sunday shadows lengthening, we staged the awards ceremony, sending the Southwest and Plain States rodders home with their hard-earned hardware. Watching the cool cars cruise by the stage and accept their awards solidified the fact that this region produces some of the finest iron in the United States. The Lone Star Nationals resides in the upper echelon of our fall events, giving both car folks and fans a full weekend of high class, high-banked hot roddin’ fun. Make sure and get here next September 29-Oct 1st for the 25th annual celebration!
Click here for the award winner’s list: 24th Lone Star Nationals Award Winners
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