Twenty-five years ago, eight Hot Rod Magazine staff vehicles and eight cars driven by readers left Los Angeles, California on a 2,200 mile trek across the country to Norwalk, Ohio en route to one of Hot Rod’s “Power Festivals”. Sixteen cars. In twenty-five years, that figure has grown so much that the venues have to be massive in order to take care of the many thousands of cars that hit the road in the company of the magazine and crew. Power Tour was always about actually bringing your pile out into the open air and putting it onto the roads…specifically, the backroads and rural highways of America that had names that didn’t start with “Interstate” for the most part. Rain, shine, whatever…just drive your hot rod, muscle car, street beater, or whatever you brought and have a ball. You don’t have to twist our arm any!
Actually driving on Power Tour this year wasn’t in the cards, but with a stop at Kentucky Speedway in Sparta, Kentucky happening, it only made sense to get the camera and get to driving. I left the Cruze at home and broke Angry Grandpa out for some highway miles and I have to say, it was surreal making tracks with a 1972 Dodge Charger right on my ass, it’s 440 ringing loud and clear through the morning air. Old, new, ratty and polished to perfection, it was on the lot. Everything from fourth-gen Camaros to a Ford GT and a Panoz Esperante street car were on hand and kudos specifically to the Ford GT guy who was letting a kid have a seat inside the supercar…that was probably the most awesome thing I saw all day, seeing that kid light right up as he plopped down into the driver’s bucket.
With camera in hand, I roamed as much of the show field as I could before breaking off for some meetings that had to happen. We’ll have a few galleries coming in from this stop, so stay tuned!