We have made it to past the midpoint of the Power Tour! You would think that after nearly five full days of viewing some of the toughest, quirkiest, and most lovely hot rods and muscle cars in the country, that one may grow somewhat numb to their ongoing presence. Well, you would be wrong. The Tour has not come up to take a single breath in regards to its bold and brash presence. Every day upon arriving to the tour, I am ecstatic about the the sense of opportunity lying on the other side of the camera lens. Finding all the little details and exploring the stories behind each build is a ever flowing fountain of uniqueness. That is not to say however, that there hasn’t been a bit of redundancy. I’ve seen enough LS swaps to satisfy just about anyone wearing an “Affliction” T-Shirt. There is also a bit of a weary traveler’s feeling in the air as the Hot Rod Magazine Staff and several of the vendors continue working tirelessly to keep the energy levels up for all the participants. Nevertheless, as the tour tapers down, I am confident that a steady level of excellence will be maintained, as well as a nice strong gust of second wind to propel the operation’s sails. This slow-point before the next big turn, is where finding those extra special projects, with equally special owners will be the most valuable treasure.
Photos & Words: Michael Phillips
The SEMA YEN Team is continuing to have an unbelievably good time. The opportunity has provided a host of productivity in addition to the flat-out fun. Our mission of finding, interviewing, and exposing young enthusiasts all thorough the trip has been wildly successful and has led to some of the most unique cars and trucks in the entire caravan to be put on display digitally. Checkout the hashtag #YENpowertour to see all of the various posts by team members who are seeking out the most exiting rides of next-gen hot-rodders.
This tour stop took place just outside Dallas, Texas at the Trader’s Village Fair Grounds. Our last stop in the Lone Star state proved to be a fantastic culmination to all things Texas. Countless freedom powered classics and moderns poured into the enormous lots of the Village. The venue was a very centralized location, placing the main stage and vender booths in an area surrounded by attendee parking. Dallas was most definitely dominated by the muscle car genre, as thousands of new and long-hauer (those following the entire tour) V8 monsters marked their territory. Several vehicles prepped for events like the Optima Batteries Ultimate Street car made their attendance known with trademark, pissed-off aero bits, harsh stance, and utilitarian interiors. I must say, seeing real driver’s cars is a personal favorite of mine and the chance to get to see many of the meanest has been nothin’ but fun.
Our day today, both as members of the SEMA YEN Team and VIP Guests with the Hot Rod team, was additionally supplemented by and in depth tour at the Painless Performance warehouse and manufacturing site, lead by Derek Love, a member of the SEMA YEN Select Comittee. The Painless gang are automotive wiring specialist, supplying wiring harnesses and components to the whole aftermarket industry. Their location in Dallas is an all in house operation where they complete R&D, manufacturing, packaging, and shipping. The event was a two team effort between Painless and Edelbrock, providing a sort of kick-back after part for RSVP’d guesst of the Power Tour, complete with catered Texas BBQ (I am still partial to Kansas City, myself).
Our days as a team are increasingly enjoyable as each member loosens up and we have found our contributing strengths, in order to form a truly viable team. As much fun as we are having and as simple as the objectives seems, they are ones vitally important to not just the world of Slam’d, but the industry as a whole. I can attest first-hand that the crowds and crowds of followers in the tour are more-than-majority into their latter years. When first tasked by SEMA, I was quick to raise an eyebrow at their definition of “Young Executives”. The category contains anyone sub-40, however this seemingly large window is still a massively outnumbered demographic. The entire existence of SEMA YEN serves to promote the industry to the next generation and to stimulate passion in enthusiasts of like age. Completing these core objectives serves to further the love of cars and fight for the continued, shared, enjoyment of them in the world at large.
SEMA YEN Power Tour Driver Profile: Nick Calaroso
Nick Calaroso Is the Sales Manager of Diode Dynamic. Diode supplies and manufactures some of the baddest lighting kits to cars of every genre. Their top build quality and OEM fits are coupled with fantastic customer support and experience. Their specialty products are well displayed on Nick’s fleet vehicle, a 2015 Mustang Ecoboost, also featuring HRE Wheels, COBB Turbo-bits, a Galaxy Grey wrap from Avery, and a killer suspension from our good friends at Air Lift Performance.