Now in its 18th year, the '05 NOPI Nationals continues to be a show of superlatives. It is one of the biggest and the best, now qualifying as the largest car show in the country. If you're only able to attend one car or truck show a year, this is the one against which all others are measured. How do you get to be number one? Michael and Mark Myers, along with Bobby Evans, genuinely know their audience. With several collective decades of experience to count on, they created the perfect series of weekend events and scheduled something new almost every hour of the day. The fun started even before the gates opened at the sprawling Atlantic Motor Speedway. Caravans from California, Canada, Maryland, and Miami added a road trip to this year's fun. Saturday morning, when the gates officially opened, thousands of drivers braved the lines, knowing the show was worth the wait.

For many, the NOPI Super Store is a traditional first stop, with its thousands of parts and accessories on sale. The vendor stalls are packed with glistening show vehicles, each proudly displaying the newest trend or accessory and making the Super Store a little like SEMA East. A short walk away, the XBox Tuner Lounge pulled gamers in like a magnet, offering a first look at all the soon-to-be released entertainment; drool over the collection of more than 1,000 trophies on display and head to the track.

The prospect of seeing more than 6,000 custom vehicles in one place is daunting enough. Actually getting around the Speedway to examine them all is not for the faint of heart or short of stamina. But the journey is always pleasant and the dozens of hourly diversions make it even more so. Stereo comes in several flavors with IASCA, dB Drags, and USACi formats available for your listening pleasure. If the booming stereos are too quiet for you, how about the Ultimate Dyno Challenge for the gearheads or the Fuzion Tire Burnout contest with the combination of shrieking tires, billowing smoke, and rubber dust darkening the sunny Atlanta skies? Is all of this excitement too, uh, stationary for you? Check out the RS*R Drift competition with local and international experts showing their sideways specialties hourly throughout the weekend. You say you want something a little more mechanical? The CCE-sponsored Hydraulic Competition offered the largest payout in the country ($9,100), attracting some of the best switchmen in the sport.

But you say, "That still isn't enough!" Then you probably want to see NOPI's real claim to fame. No problem. Beautiful women are everywhere, and they have the option of competing in several venues at the show with Club Wear Competition, Model Search opportunities, and the number one crowd favorite, the NOPI Swimsuit Finals. The best of the best are invited to compete for a share of the $5,000 prize money.

The perfect end to a perfect weekend saw about a thousand drivers heading home with a coveted piece of NOPI gold stored safely in the bed. If you'd like to be part of one of the wildest weekends of the year, put the 2006 NOPI Nationals on your calendar now. See www.NOPI.com for details.

One final note: Because community involvement is an important element of our sport, NOPI Motorsports teamed up with the Red Cross and Salvation Army in an effort to provide relief for the victims of Hurricane Katrina. Deposit boxes and volunteers were on hand accepting donations from both spectators and manufacturers alike, trying to help the thousands of people left homeless in the Gulf Coast states of Alabama, Louisiana, and Mississippi.

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