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How To Be a Great Drag Race Announcer

By motortopia

For all of you who thought you would grow up to be a great radio personality or maybe have crowds of people listen to every word; well, now you have a chance to be an announcer at the Atlanta Motor Speedway.

From our friends in Atlanta comes this offer:

Atlanta Motor Speedway is offering fans the opportunity to be the next great announcer from the Peach State during the track’s Friday Night Drags series this summer, calling all of the action during each night of racing.

Friday Night Drags non-points season opener is scheduled for June 6 and fans are invited to participate in a live audition, earning the right to be the track’s public address announcer this summer.

Slated for twelve events, Friday Night Drags has been tremendously successful, regularly drawing crowds of 5,000 spectators to AMS for heads-up drag racing down AMS’ eighth-mile pit-road drag strip.

“We are searching for someone passionate about drag racing,” said Ed Clark, AMS president and general manager. “We could select a professional announcer, but we want someone who will have fun interacting with the crowd. They don’t have to have any previous experience, just someone who will enjoy this unique opportunity.”

Fans interested in participating in the audition should visit www.atlantamotorspeedway.com, click on the Friday Night Drags link and register online, or fans can mail their contact information to: Atlanta Motor Speedway, Attn.: Friday Night Drags PA, P.O. Box 500, Hampton, GA 30228. The track will contact those interested individually and provide further details.

If you are a Motortopia member, get on out there and try this. If could be a lot of fun.

P.S. Some advice from someone in our office says you need to be sure to turn off the mic when you are telling personal stories or the kinds of jokes you wouldn't tell at church. :-)

Mystery Car of the Day (#10)

By motortopia

You know the drill, year make model and owner.

Question of the Day: What's your favorite form of motorsport?

By motortopia

Man was racing long before motorized vehicles came along. And once they were invented, I'm sure it wasn't long before somebody raced them.

Today, there are hundreds of different types of motorsport: NASCAR, Formula 1, NHRA Drag Racing, World Rally Championship, AMA Superbike, Motocross, Power Boat Racing, Air Racing... even Lawn Mower Racing!

I love lots of different forms of motorsport, but I only religiously follow Formula 1 and the American LeMans Series. The engineer side of me loves the technology in these series, I much prefer road courses to ovals, the performance of F1 cars and the ALMS prototypes are absolutely mind-boggling, and the sounds these cars make are just heavenly.

Although, that lawn mower racing looks pretty darn cool...

So what about you? What is your favorite form of motorsport, and why? Let us know in the comments!

Mystery Car of the Day (#9)

By motortopia

Let's hear it, year, make, model, owner. Feel free to comment on the rides too :)

Question of the Day: What's your favorite engine type?

By motortopia

This morning's post about the rotary engine got me thinking: there are all sorts of engines out there. Big torquey V8s, small high-revving turbo-charged I4s, exotic powerful V12s, out-of-the-ordinary Wankels, and more. They all have their advantages and disadvantages, and they all have their own unique character.

For me, a naturally-aspirated flat-6 is the sweet spot. What about you?

Mystery Car of the Day (#8)

By motortopia

We're looking for year, make, model, and owner. Good Luck!

Bikes, Planes, and Cars all powered by Rotary engines.

By motortopia

Simple and effective concepts are the best. The rotary engine is a great example.

Used in airplanes,motorcycles, and cars; the rotary engine was a stable powerplant for vehicles around the world.

The idea is straightforward. No fixed rotating crankshaft as with the radial engine, the crankshaft remains stationary and the entire cylinder block rotates around it.

They are easy to see in old aircraft because the crankshaft is fixed directly to an aircraft frame, and the propeller simply bolted onto the front of the cylinder block.

Basically a big gyroscope, the flywheel effect of the rotating engine mass could produce smooth power.

An interesting fact is that most rotary engines were built with an odd number of pistons.

Early used in aircraft, the rotary engine was used in most aircraft in the early 1900's. The were great air-cooled engines.

Because of the gyroscopic effect, it could sometimes make it more difficult to turn an aircraft. It was easy to go left, not so easy to go right.

Mystery Car of the Day (#7)

By motortopia

This picture isn't from the main vehicle photo, but the tail lights should give it away... we are looking for year, make, model and owner.

Question of the Day: Have you ever had to make "the call?"

By motortopia

Calling your dad after you've wrecked his car sucks. You know you are in big trouble. So imagine how this kid felt this past weekend when he had make the call home to say he had just wrecked his father's $400,000 (AUS) Ferrari F360 Challenge Stradale.

According to an article in The Sydney Morning Herald, this is one of only 16 of the super-rare Ferraris imported to Australia. The kid was speeding when he lost control and wrapped his dad's Ferrari around a pole. The car suffered extensive damage, but probably nothing compared to the damage he is going to suffer at the hands of his father.

What's worse is that television news crews were around and filming him as he had to make that dreaded call to his dad. Hello, YouTube!

So tell us: have you ever had to make "the call" to your father to tell him you had just wrecked his car? Or maybe you've been on the other end of that call? Leave us a comment.

Mystery Car of the Day (#6)

By motortopia

These are too easy! Ok no hints, lets hear the year, make, model and owner of this one...

Mystery Car of the Day (#5)

By motortopia

CrimsonKrush got the last one. OK, now for the next one, you should know who's it is if you've been paying any attention around here ;)

OK I'll throw in a small hint:

In a rocky town in the vicinity of Vegas, this precious stone of a vehicle sits.

Ayrton Senna's Last Lap

By motortopia

I'm a day late with this, but I wanted to post it anyway. Fourteen years ago yesterday, on May 1, 1994, we lost one of, if not the, greatest racing drivers of all time, Ayrton Senna. The three-time Formula 1 World champion was loved and respected by millions of people, both on and off the track.

Tragically, he was killed during the San Marino Grand Prix in Imola. Below is a link to video of the last lap of his life before his fatal accident.

watch his last lap

Ayrton Senna remains the last Grand Prix driver killed driving a Formula 1 car. And he will never be forgotten.

Question of the Day: How do you feel about black boxes in autos?

By motortopia

Today's QotD was suggested by JerryandMary. Jerry recently came across this article talking about Crash Data Recorders, or "black boxes."

Vehicles have been equipped with "black boxes" since 1974 (GM was the first), but in the 1990s, they started actually recording data that can detail how you drive. They are tied in with the airbag system, and they record the speed, braking, acceleration, and other data for the period five seconds before an accident.

Opponents argue that it is too "Big Brother" and basically amounts to spying on drivers. Proponents, on the other hand, think they are an invaluable tool for accident reconstructions. In some cases, this data has been used to get convictions in deadly crashes.

So what do you think? Are these black boxes a tool that can help investigators, or do they step over the line and violate your privacy?

Tell us in the comments!

(By the way, you can find out if your car has a black box here.)

Mystery Car of the Day (#4)

By motortopia

OK, car #3 was an easy one, picked up quick by tamatt79.

This one might be a bit trickier, and comes with a riddle:

From the man north of us bearing the finger of a tree. This is one of Henry's finest, touting a hat full of beads.

Mystery Car of the Day (#3)

By motortopia

OK, JerryAndMary easily got the first mystery car, and the second one wasn't quite so easy, but mustang50dominates finally got it!

Here is mystery car #3, can you spot it? We want year, make, model and owner. Good Luck!

History Lesson of the Day: 500 miles real fast thanks to Buddy.

By motortopia

Talladega. 1972. I was a junior in high school.

I remember the win. Buddy Baker wins the Winston 500 in less than three hours. Five Hundred Miles! First driver to do that ever!

He had it in his blood. His dad, Buck Baker, also was a winning driver so racing really is a family sport.

He is a NASCAR hero and superstar.

If you remember what you were doing in 1972 when he won this race, leave your comments here. Or leave a comment even if you don't remember anything.

Mystery Car of the Day (#2)

By motortopia

OK, so the first mystery car was pretty easy. Here's the next one, it should be easy too. We want the make, model, year and owner. Good Luck!

Mystery Car of the Day

By motortopia

So, we have a picture (or part of a picture) of someone's ride here on Motortopia. Can you identify the make and model, and more importantly, identify it's owner?

Question of the Day: What car made you a car guy or gal?

By motortopia

posted by corsa

Everyone who is car-obsessed had that moment in their life: the moment you saw your first Jaguar XK120 and it stopped you in your tracks. Or the moment you saw the opening scene in "Cannonball Run" and couldn't stop thinking about the red Lamborghini Countach for weeks thereafter. Or the moment a neighbor gave you a ride in their '69 Chevelle and you didn't want it to end.

Whatever it was, a "switch" flipped and you went from just liking cars to being a certifiable car nut, obsessed with the sights, the sounds, the smells, and the feel of cars. You covered your walls with posters of your dream cars. You subscribed to every car magazine you could and learned how to identify the exact make and model of any car, just by looking at a tail light. You learned how to tell the different between a Ford and a Chevy just by the sound of the engine.

For me, that happened when I was about twelve years old. My Uncle Joe gave me a ride in his 1964 Corvette convertible on the back highways in Kansas. The sensation of being pushed back in the seat, the sounds of the dual exhaust from the screaming 327 V8, the feel of the wind rushing by when we reached speeds of... well, let's just say I wasn't supposed to tell my parents how fast we went. :)

Some of my best childhood memories are the trips to the farm in Kansas to visit Uncle Joe, and begging him to take me for a drive. And the Corvette? He still has it, and you can even see it here on Motortopia.

So... what was the first car you ever saw or experienced that began your obsession? Let us know in the comments!

Member Spotlight: NYPD Blue Flashin' Lights in the UK.

By motortopia

I spend a fair amount of time in New York City, although I prefer the more quiet rural life I have in Nebraska. Among the many sounds of New York City, there is no more hair-raising sound than the shrill electronic, high pitched, whoop, whoop of a NYPD patrol car.

Believe me, when they want to get your attention, they get it!

Ok, so how do you get one of these New York's Finest vehicles to the UK and preserve the lights and sound action?

Motortopia member, Job_Rated, brings us this photo from the AACI's (American Auto Club International)Spring National Show in the UK. And, the lights and sirens are in working order....even though the NYPD disables them when the sell the cars.

One of the show reps (name withheld) explains:

"Hi, I have been asked this a few times so no hassle, you can import any American car, as you know, the tricky bit is how do they get here as a cop car. One way is just to buy an old one from the American police that they sell off, or paint a Yank in Police livery here, the only issue here is the lights must not work nor the siren, but most owners get around that by just fitting a secondary switch that the police can't find and flick it off an on when they want!!!!!! "

You gotta love that! We are always talkin about Yankee Ingenuity...well, here is a bit of Brit Ingenuity on a Yank Car in the UK.

Check out the photo album from the AACI Spring Nationalearlier this month in the UK. Leave a few trophies on the pics.

Hats off to our British friends. And thank you job_rated for submitting pics and the show and the great little story behind that car.

Question of the Day: What is the best all-around car?

By motortopia

posted by corsa

Well, we've decided to try out a new thing here on Motortopia: a question of the day. We won't promise we'll come up with a question every single day, but we will try our best to post a question as many (weekdays) as we can.

With that said, let's get started. A lot of people here on Motortopia own several vehicles. You might have a work vehicle and a daily driver. Or a daily driver and a "fun" vehicle. Or several fun vehicles. So here's the question: if a mandate came down that said you could only own one vehicle, but money was not an object, what would it be? In other words, what is the best all-around vehicle you can think of that would suit your lifestyle and that you could live with every day?

For me, I would have to pick the Audi RS4 Avant. It isn't too big, but it will carry 4 people. It is a wagon, so I could haul most anything I need to. It is all-wheel-drive, so with a proper set of winter tires, it would make it through the Nebraska winters with no problem. Its 420 horsepower 4.2 liter V8 mated to a 6-speed manual transmission makes it plenty fast, and it could even be used for the occasional track day. And wrapped in the body of a station wagon, it won't attract a lot of attention from the cops.

So, that's my choice. Tell us yours in the comments!

How'd Ya Get That Handle, Frog? Need a Chuckle? Read this!

By motortopia

Got a healthy chuckle yesterday when a Motortopia friend shared the story about her handle with us.

The more friends we have on Motortopia, the more we find ourselves talking around here with each other in weird names, in Motortopia-speak. We talk about people with their handles which represent cars - 99_corvette, or jobs - amarillo_banker; or hobbies - guitarman.

But, yesterday, one of our friends shared the story of how she got her handle - FROG. Take some time to watch the video of how FROG got her handle, and then head on over to FROG's GARAGE and leave her a note.

And, tell us about your own, or other funniest handle here in the comments. We'll all enjoy your comments here.

Have a good one.

David (goldylocks, that is :-) ) and the Motortopia team!

Happy Birthday, Dale. We salute you! Share your thoughts here.

By motortopia

I know one of the things we all love about cars, being around others who love cars, and watching folks who love cars, driving, racing and things car related is the unbridled passion, the true and non-manufactured passion, for cars and the car - sports.

No one lived that better than Dale Earnhardt, born today, April 29, 1951; Earnhardt held so many honors: from Rookie of The Year in 1979 to Inductee into the International Motorsports Hall of Fame in 2006.

Each one of us probably has our memory of Dale; some image from some race, or winner's circle, or interview which helps us understand and remember; that it is heart and soul that drives the best in motortoports; and Dale gave us a lot of heart while he was on this earth.

Whether you are passionate about cars, bikes, boats, or airplanes; we all know Earnhardt and what he did for the love of his sport.

Today is his birthday. Happy Birthday, Dale. And, Thank You.

Please share your thoughts here.

9 Million Mustangs!

By motortopia

Whether you are a Ford person or a Chevy person, there is no denying that the Mustang is a huge part of American culture. Ford has just announced it has built its 9 millionth Mustang during its 45-year production run, and it will be delivered to a dealership somewhere in Iowa.

The Mustang was introduced in 1964 as a direct response to the Chevrolet Corvair Monza. The Corvair, introduced in late 1959 as a 1960 model, was originally intended to compete against the Ford Falcon as an economy car. But later in 1960, when Chevy introduced the Corvair Monza coupe with bucket seats and a 4-speed manual transmission, it created a whole new niche market for small sporty cars.

Ford saw the potential in this new market, and started working on their own answer to the Corvair. Interestingly, the first Mustang concept that was shown was actually a rear-engined car, like the Corvair. However, instead of an air-cooled flat-6, the Mustang concept car used a water-cooled 4-cylinder sourced from the front-wheel-drive Cardinal/Taunus from their German division. It was created in an amazing 60 days and shown in the fall of 1961. Although well-received, Ford deemed the Mustang I too expensive to produce, and the 2-seater concept car was also too impractical.

By 1962, Ford had produced several new styling mockups that met the following requirements (again, to compete against the Corvair): a $2500 target price; a 2500 lb. curb weight; 180-inch overall length; seating for four; floor-mounted manual shifter; and maximum use of Ford Falcon parts. Eventually, the design you see in the picture above was chosen as the winner. (Note the Corvair in the background, being used for comparison.) It is also interesting to note how the concept featured fake side air intake vents in front of the rear wheels, an homage to the earlier rear-engined Mustang I concept that needed those vents for cooling. Even today, the Mustang has retained that styling cue.

Prior to the launch of the Mustang as a 1964 1/2 model, Ford pulled out all the stops and produced one of the largest and most brilliant marketing blitzes in history. And it worked. The car was unveiled on April 16, 1964, to 29 million TV viewers, as it bought time on all three networks during the 9 pm time slot. The next morning, over 2600 newspapers carried ads and articles about the new car, and it was shown to the public at the New York World's Fair.

All their effort paid off: "Mustang Fever" hit the nation. There were all sorts of crazy stories going around. One trucker was so distracted by a Mustang in a San Francisco showroom that he drove right through the window. A Chicago dealer had to lock its doors to keep people from rushing in and crushing the cars -- and each other. A Pittsburgh retailer hoisted his only Mustang on a lube rack, only to find crowds pressing in so thick and fast that he couldn't get the car down until suppertime. Another dealer found itself with 15 customers wanting to buy the same new Mustang, so the car was auctioned. The winning bidder insisted on sleeping in it until his check cleared.

Ford clearly had a hit. In fact, in its first year, the Mustang set an industry record for first-year sales. The Mustang looked good, was priced right, and had a long list of options, so people could really personalize the car and make it their own. It was also cheaper to produce than Chevy's rival Corvair, since it was based on the Ford Falcon. It could also use the Ford engines out of their other models, so you could get an inline-6 if you wanted economy, and it was just as easy for Ford to drop in a big V8 if you wanted performance. The success of the Mustang smothered the Corvair, and Chevy soon realized they needed something other than the Corvair to compete. Hence, the Camaro (and Firebird) was created as a direct response, and introduced in 1967.

The Mustang continued, and grew larger and more powerful in the 60s and early 70s. In 1967, the big block V8s were available with 300+ horsepower. By 1971, you could get a 375 hp 429 Super Cobra Jet V8. Also, during these years, Carroll Shelby produced the legendary GT350 and GT500 models.

Then, in 1974, Ford made a drastic change by introducing the Mustang II. The Mustang II was originally to be based on the smaller Ford Maverick, but Lee Iacocca decided it should be based on the even smaller Ford Pinto. It was meant to compete with the Toyota Celica and the Mercury Capri. When it was introduced, you could only get a 4-cylinder or a V6. Gone were the powerful V8s you could get in the previous Mustang. In 1975, a V8 was finally offered, but only with a 2-barrel carburetor. It only produced 140 hp.

Surprisingly, the Mustang II sold really well. Over 400,000 were sold in 1974, and four of the five years of the Mustang II are in the top-ten best selling Mustang years ever. In 1976, the Cobra was introduced, and in 1977 the King Cobra was introduced to try and give it a performance image.

In 1979, Ford again redesigned the Mustang. This time, it was based on the Fox platform of the Ford Fairmont and Mercury Zephyr. It was larger, and completely restyled. Again, the top engined was a 140 hp V8. However, during the mid-80s, Ford started increasing the power available in the Mustang. Ford offered two ways to get your speed on: the turbo-charged 4-cylinder SVO or the V8 GT.

But, sales were slumping. Ford decided the Mustang had lost its way again, and decided to replace it with a Mazda-based front wheel drive car. Mustang fans went nuts, and bombarded Ford with hundreds of thousands of letters. Ford changed their mind and decided to keep the rear-wheel-drive Mustang. The proposed front-wheel-drive Mustang replacement was released as the Ford Probe.

In 1987, Ford refocused itself on the Mustang, and gave it a styling update. Ford and Chevy started pushing each other to make the Mustang and Camaro faster. Ford introduced models like the SVT Cobra and Cobra R, while Chevy fired back with the IROC Z.

In 1994, Ford redesigned the Mustang again. This time, it was based on an updated version of the same Fox platform and featured dramatic new styling. Power eventually increased to almost 400 hp, and the Cobras even featured a new independent rear suspension.

In 2002, GM killed off the Camaro and Firebird, leaving the Mustang as the sole American-made pony car. But Ford didn't stand idly by. In 2004, they introduced a completely redesign Mustang based on an all-new platform with "retro-futurism" styling. The new Mustang looked moderan, but also clearly had styling cues from the 1967-68 Mustangs.

This current Mustang is available in several models. These include the base Mustang and Mustang GT, as well as several performance-oriented special editions, like the Bullitt, Shelby GT, Shelby GT-H, Shelby GT500, and the 500+ hp Shelby GT500KR.

For now, the Mustang is the king of the road when it comes to American muscle. However, the new Dodge Challenger is right around the corner, and Chevrolet is reintroducing the Camaro in 2010 to give the Mustang some more competition. But it is the Mustang that is here right now, and it is the Mustang that is truly a part of the American culture.

Check out the photo album to see some pictures of Mustangs, and tell us your Mustang stories in the comments.

Danica Patrick Makes History

By motortopia

Danica Patrick made history this past weekend by becoming the first woman ever to win an IndyCar race.

Patrick won by 5.8594 seconds over race pole-sitter Helio Castroneves in the Indy Japan 300 on Sunday. Patrick started from the third row, and was as low as eighth place on lap 189. But an excellent fuel strategy propelled her to second place on lap 197, and on the 198th lap she passed Castroneves to take the lead in the 200-lap race.

Last year, Patrick finished seventh in the driver standings, and placed second in the Detroit Belle Isle race. In 2005, she made history by becoming the first woman ever to lead the Indianapolis 500, and finished fourth, also the best-ever finish for a woman.

Congrats Danica! The monkey is now off your back, and there will be more wins to come!

More Internet Justice: Online Forum Users Bust Car Thief

By motortopia

Last week, we told you how BMW of Lincoln tried to back out of an Ebay auction won by m3post.com forum member dooma350. Soon the story was all over the Internet, and eventually the dealership gave in and decided to honor the deal. (Note: as of today, dooma350 is still waiting for the car to be delivered. Check the m3post.com thread for the latest updates.)

Now comes of the story of how a bunch of Internet car enthusiasts from Beyond.ca helped take down a very stupid car thief.

It all started when the thief took Shaun Ironside's 1991 Nissan Skyline GT-R for a test drive in Calgary and never returned. Shaun called the cops and thought that was the last he'd ever see the car in one piece.

He decided to post a thread at Beyond.ca to see if anyone could help track down the car. His post said the car would be easy to spot, since it is a rare right-hand drive GT-R imported from Japan. The thief would also be easy to spot because he is missing two fingers from his right hand.

The next day, a forum moderator spotted the Skyline and was able to snap a picture of the thief behind the wheel, including his right hand. He rolled down his window and yelled "Nice stolen car!" at the thief, who replied "It's not stolen" then sped off at over 100 mph. The forum moderator called the police and posted the picture on the forum.

Eventually, people started reporting seeing the thief driving around and challenging people to race. Then they found his Facebook page and started posting his name and address all over the place.

On March 27, forum member Numi spotted the GT-R outside the thief's house. He couldn't see the address so he posted the general location of the house on the forums. It wasn't long before the forum members had a Google map posted showing the exact location of the house.

Numi met Shaun and the police near the thief's house, but the car and the thief were gone before they got there. The next morning, forum member Punit Patel decided to drive by the thief's house. When he got there, he saw the Skyline parked on the street between two pickups. He blocked the car in with his car, then called Shaun. Twenty minutes later, Shaun arrived and called the cops. Within fifteen minutes, the thief was arrested.

The thief was identified as 18-year-old Jamie Jacobsen, and Shaun put up a video on YouTube of Jamie being arrested.

Shaun has his car back, but the tires are shot, the alignment is off, and the interior smells like marijuana. But he did find $22 and the thief's NY Yankees cap inside. He kept the money and put the hat on eBay. The current bid is up to $260.

Score another one for the good guys.

Click here to see the video, click here to see the thread on Beyond.ca, and click here to bid on the Yankees hat!

NBC Greenlights Hour-long Ford Commercial for the Fall

By motortopia

Well, technically it isn't a Ford commercial... but anyone that watched the Knight Rider made-for-TV movie a couple months back probably felt like they were watching a really long Ford commercial.

Although the movie was panned for bad writing and wooden acting, the ratings were good enough that NBC has just given the thumbs-up to a new weekly Knight Rider series that will air this fall.

KITT will remain a Shelby-ized Mustang, and all the characters (and background traffic) will probably still be driving Fords. However, all those Jags and Land Rovers you saw in the TV movie will have to be replaced, now that Ford has sold those companies to India's Tata Motors, Ltd. I would also assume they will keep the lead actors, but will Val Kilmer still be KITT's voice? And will David Hasselhoff make any appearances? You'll have to tune in this fall to find out.

So, those of you who saw the TV movie: was it bad enough that you won't be watching this fall, or will you give the series another chance?

Let us know in the comments!

Man Wins BMW M3 Auction on eBay; Dealer Reneges on Deal; The Interweb Roars; Man Gets Car?

By motortopia

Whew! We just finished reading a 40-page thread on the M3Post.com forums, and what a story it is.

It all started when forum member dooma350 came across an auction by BMW of Lincoln (Nebraska) for a 2008 BMW M3 Sedan. The auction had a starting bid of $60,000, no reserve, a but-it-now price of $66,926 and was advertised as the "LOWEST PRICE ON EBAY" for a new M3. He decided to bid, and got his financing in order. On Friday, it turned out he was the only bidder and won the auction. Here is where the story took a turn.

The dealership called him fifteen minutes after the auction ended and told him they had "made a mistake" and weren't going to honor the sale. dooma350 reminded the dealer of their contractual obligation through ebay, at which time, according to dooma350, the guy "had the nerve to condescendingly laugh and say we are a multi-million dollar company, ebay will definitely side with us."

I'm thinking that got dooma350 a little worked up. Over the weekend, the story started to spread like wildfire all over the Internet, to automotive and consumer blogs, forums, and even viral news sites like Digg and Fark. To make a long story short, the dealer was inundated with emails and phone calls supporting dooma350, and as of this morning, BMW of Lincoln has told dooma350 they will honor the sale, but "with conditions." doom350 will find out those conditions tomorrow.

And it seems the entire Internet community of automotive enthusiasts will be watching.

If you have some time, click here to read the entire thread over at M3Posts.com.

37 Years Later, Woman Finds Out Her Mustang is Stolen

By motortopia

Judy Smongesky's father gave her a 1965 Mustang as a graduation present when she was 18. Thirty-seven years later, Judy found out the car was reported stolen two weeks before they bought it.

Just drove the car for 20 years, rebuilt the engine once, and painted it twice. In the 1990s, a neighbor noticed the car had different VIN numbers on the door and under the hood. Judy called the police, they checked it out and said everything checked out okay.

But just recently, Judy started restoring the car. Before dumping a lot of money into the restoration, she decided to have the VIN numbers checked out again. She called the police, and this time they discovered that the VIN on the driver's side door was from a 1964 Mustang. They ran the VIN under the hood and found out the car was reported stolen 37 years earlier.

Police have located the original owner, Eugene Brakke of Los Angeles, and told him they have found his car. Legally, the car is his and he can just go pick it up.

Judy spoke to Mr. Brakke, and he wants to see the car but hasn't told whether he wants it or not.

She said he did not seem happy or excited that his car was found, but instead, he seemed dismayed that the car had been repainted from gold to blue.

Legally, Brakke can just get in the car and drive it away. Judy still loves the car and wants to keep it, but she still feels she did the right thing, no matter what the outcome is.

Judy hopes she and Brakke can come to an agreement, but knows that may not be the outcome.

“I'm hoping he says, 'You can have it,' but it's his car,” she said. “I will keep it if I can.”

Bandit Run 2008 Registration is Open!

By motortopia

Last year's Bandit Run was a huge success. Over 200 Bandit Run fans in 75 cars of all types (but mostly Trans Ams!) drove from Texarkana to Atlanta, retracing the route that Snowman and the Bandit drove in the original movie.

The event culminated at the Year One Experience in Atlanta, where Bandit Run participants got to meet celebrities such as Chip Foose and A. J. from Overhaulin'. They also got to see the exclusive unveiling of the Year One Burt Reynold's Edition Trans Am, and got to drive their cars on the famous Road Atlanta track.

And this year looks to be even bigger! Running from May 13th to May 18th, this year's run will start in Columbus, OH, and once again end up at the Year One Experience in Atlanta. It will also include special stops along the way, and a movie tour of many of the locations used in the film.

Check out the official Bandit Run group for more information, including pictures and videos from last year's Bandit Run; to talk with other Bandit Run enthusiasts in the forums; and to register for the event online!
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