Unique Marriages at April 1-4 Food Lion AutoFair
Something Old: "Twentieth Century Dinosaurs," the creation of New Jersey artist Jim Gary, is the ultimate expression of automotive art. Twelve nearly life-size dinosaur skeletons made from old car parts will transform Charlotte Motor Speedway into a dinosaur drive-in. A 44-foot Brontosaurus, towering Tyrannosaurus Rex, vicious Velociraptors and a Pterodactyl with an eight-foot wingspan will be among the brightly colored prehistoric creatures roaming the speedway grounds.
To create these metallic masterpieces, the artist turns oil pans into heads, leaf springs into ribs, drive shafts into backbones and brake shoes into feet. Gary uses parts from as many as eight cars to create one large four-legged dinosaur.
Something New: To celebrate the upcoming May 21 running of the Charlotte Tailgate 200, a special NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series display will include the new No. 24 Toyota Tundra driven by defending series champion Travis Kvapil. Race trucks from Chevrolet, Ford and Dodge will also be featured in tribute to the newest NASCAR series to make an annual stop in Charlotte.
NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series drivers Rick Crawford, Mike Skinner, Dennis Setzer, and Andy Houston will sign autographs at the race truck display in the Manufacturer's Midway on Friday, April 2, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Something Borrowed: Food Lion AutoFair celebrates 20 years of Hendrick Motorsports success by borrowing some of racing's most famous stock cars from the legendary NASCAR superpower. Geoff Bodine's No. 5 Levi Garrett Chevrolet, Tim Richmond's No. 25 Folger's Coffee machine and the rainbow-colored No. 24 entry driven to victory by Jeff Gordon in the inaugural Brickyard 400 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway will be among the select Hendrick Motorsports race cars on display.
The exhibit will also include Brian Vickers' 2003 Busch Series championship GMAC/CARQUEST Chevrolet, Terry Labonte's specially painted No. 5 Iron Man entry and a No. 48 Lowe's Chevrolet driven by Jimmie Johnson.
Something Blue: Turning 40 triggers a middle-age crisis for some, but for owners of Ford Mustangs, it's time for a pony-car party. Food Lion AutoFair celebrates the 40th birthday of Ford's most famous car with a collection of signature body-styles from four decades.
Headlining the exhibit is the "Blue Intimidator," Kannapolis resident Ron Wetzler's unique tribute to hometown racing legend Dale Earnhardt. Wetzler's highly customized 2001 Roush Mustang joins a 1964 convertible, '69 Boss 429, '76 Cobra II, '89 Saleen Hatchback and a '95 Cobra R Saleen among the signature pony cars from each decade on display.
In another step back in time, Food Lion AutoFair presents the first public appearance in nearly 40 years of a historic 1964 Dodge 330, considered by drag racing historians to be one of the sport's first Funny Cars.
The car, one of three originally commissioned by Dodge to showcase the company's performance capabilities, is owned by Frank Spittle of Cornelius who has spent six years meticulously restoring it. The candy-apple red, white and blue machine ran drag-racing exhibitions in 1964 and consistently topped 135 mph in quarter-mile runs.
Food Lion AutoFair is the nation's largest automotive extravaganza. The four-day event includes a car show featuring various makes and models from 52 car clubs; thousands of vendor spaces that offer a plethora of automotive parts and memorabilia; and a two-day collector car auction conducted by Tom Mack. A car corral, which completely encircles the 1.5-mile superspeedway, features nearly 2,000 vehicles of all makes and models that are available for sale or trade.
Food Lion AutoFair hours are 8 a.m. to 6 p.m., Thursday through Saturday, and 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., Sunday. Tickets are $10 for adults with children under 12 admitted free when accompanied by an adult. Parking for the event is $5.
Contact the Charlotte Motor Speedway Events Department at (704) 455-3205 or visit www.charlottemotorspeedway.com for information.