The 15th annual Goodguys Southeastern Nationals on Oct. 24-26 will bring more than 3,000 unique cars from 30 states and three Canadian provinces to Charlotte Motor Speedway. One of the classic rides featured next week will be an Electric Current Red 1946 Lincoln Zephyr owned by Jerry Hemmingson, drag racer and owner of Jerico Performance Products in Concord.

The Minnesota native bought the car less than a year ago and has been working on restoring it ever since. The eye-catching red Zephyr has a Pontiac Grand Prix chassis and was built in Louisville, Ky.

"This is my first Goodguys event. I actually have some friends coming down from up north to meet us here. I think it will be very enjoyable," said Hemmingson, who just joined the Goodguys Rod and Custom Association this year.

"I bought the car from a guy in the housing industry who needed the money. I guess someone's bad luck was my good luck. I was looking for a Mercury when I found this car, because I had one in high school, and this was something along the same lines."

Hemmingson has been tinkering with cars since he was in grade school. He first got involved with automobiles when he was 9 years old.

Since he was injured in a snowmobile racing accident, cars have been his business. He has also been involved in drag racing for most of his life.

Hemmingson runs a successful business that provides performance parts to race teams in NASCAR, ARCA, NHRA and many other series. He also continues to drag race. When he bought the car the 64-year old was looking to slow down.

"I just bought this car less than a year ago," said Hemmingson.

"I've been building a new engine for it out of several different things.

It's pretty much a ground-up custom. It was a good original car. The only major change is that the top is chopped. It's got a Cadillac motor, custom upholstery and it's redone under the hood so it looks good.

"I am building an engine for it, and I'm actually going to take it apart right after this show. I would like to put all stainless steel exhaust on it and I'm doing a lot of unique things to it to try and make it better, as well as putting in more comforts, electronics, fuel injection and that kind of stuff.

"A lot of my friends are starting to get custom cars and going around the country to different shows," he concluded.

Hemmingson drives the car to lunch on Saturdays and he and his wife Cheryl enjoy going to some of the smaller local evening cruise-ins. In addition to participating in local shows, he also wants to take the car to the Goodguys event in Joliet, Ill.

The Goodguys Southeastern Nationals includes vendor exhibits, a swap meet, a car corral area with vehicles for sale, a model and pedal car display and a free model building area for kids. A street challenge autocross is also scheduled on the road course to test vehicle performance.

On Friday evening, the Richard Petty Driving Experience will offer the opportunity to purchase rides around the 1.5-mile oval at 150-plus miles per hour in the passenger seat of a NASCAR Sprint Cup car. Saturday night will see the return of the popular Cruise Under the Lights, where hundreds of hot rods and customs take to the superspeedway for several laps and spectators are invited to watch the cruise from the speedway's frontstretch grandstand.

Tickets for the Oct. 24-26 Goodguys Southeastern Nationals are available at the gate or online at www.good-guys.com. Adult tickets are $17 per day with children ages 7 to 12 admitted for $6 while kids 6 and under are free. Parking for the event is $5.

Event hours are 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Friday and Saturday and 8 a.m.

to 3 p.m. on Sunday. Information about the Goodguys Southeastern Nationals may be obtained by calling Goodguys at (925) 838-9876 or the Charlotte Motor Speedway events department at (704) 455-3205 or online at www.good-guys.com or www.charlottemotorspeedway.com.