Hot Rod Power Tour Journal: Day 8

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Alas, all good things must come to an end and the 2016 Hot Rod Power Tour is no exception to the cruel laws of nature. As quickly as it arrived, the ultimate rolling car show vanishes again into automotive myth, only to make its return for another brief period of bliss this next summer. The final leg of the journey took place in one my my favorite cities in the world, Kansas City, Kansas, at the Nascar Speedway. The last time I visited this landmark of internal combustion I was just five years old. I don’t remember much, but what I do remember, is a nice view of turn four, a three foot long piece of licorice shared with my grandfather, and a stark declaration from the same man, that if the drivers had any genuine guts they’d be making their passes in figure-eight fashion. This was the way he and his brother’s (Harry and Gerry) had for decades. Nothing but providence and poetic justice can account for the fact that the Power Tour’s last stop would take me to this memory filled arena, but my tour’s last stop would return me to my grandfather’s garage.

More on that later however, for now we turn back to progress of the SEMA YEN Team and our Power Tour mission. Our next step in the process of reaching out to young enthusiasts and future industry members lead us to Johnson County Community College and to visit their automotive tech department and facility. We were met there yet again by a handful of students and staff members, ready to dialogue about ways to break into the aftermarket industry and how to put their top notch training to good use. I comfortably speak for the whole YEN team when I say that this aspect of our journey was surpassingly rewarding and inspires us to continue similar efforts of our own accord.

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Photos & Words: Michael Phillips

After our final school visit was completed, we made our way with some haste to the KC Speedway, and there were greeted by excited and energetic crowds, determined to end the epic tour with a bang. The irony of it all is that the event quite literally went up in smoke, thanks to a burnout contest which helped to conclude the festivities. Throughout the parking lot and entry grounds of the raceway were spread the final efforts of the sponsors and vendor booths, the last grandiose of the main stage and its hosts, and above all, a decisive and authoritative spread of some of the nations most hot-rodded cars and trucks, built and driven by the backbone of the nation, for more than 3000 tour miles.

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Thank you all for following along with our Slam’d journey and coverage of the 2016 Hot Rod Power Tour!

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