Road Trip – Tallahassee Automobile Museum

This is the most eclectic museum I’ve ever been to! “It’s more than a museum . . .  it’s a journey,” says the brochure. Yes, the name is Tallahassee Automobile Museum, however there’s much more to see and discover inside this two story treasure chest of over 160 cars. Besides race cars, show cars, classic cars, movie cars and antique cars, there are also pedal cars, horseless carriages, motorcycles, bicycles, tractors, trucks, boats, canoes, model airplanes and spaceships! If you like classic and antique things, you’ll be happy here perusing the collections of brass fans, adding machines, cash registers, typewriters, cameras, dolls, action figures and more. If you like weapons, you’ll find knives and guns. If you like golf you’ll find multiple sets of clubs with real wood drivers. For those that are nostalgic about things of their youth, you’ll find Wheaties boxes, baseball cards, baseballs, basketballs, footballs and golf balls. Posters and pictures abound throughout with many sports heroes and icons gracing the walls of this museum. What, you say you like music? How about a grand collection of one-of-a-kind Steinway grand pianos – yes, this place has it. Did I mention the safes and early dental equipment? You say you’re more of an avid outdoorsman? How would you like to see a collection of Native American artifacts, outboard motors and fishing lures? 

Here are some of the most popular vehicles on display: A hearse (one of the six original) that carried Abraham Lincoln on his journey to be buried. The duck car that the “Penguin” drove in the Batman movie franchise – not to mention numerous Batmobiles. There’s even a car made out of wood that actually drives. Speaking of which, all vehicles in the collection are kept in driving condition. 

Up front when you first walk in is a tribute chopper to an American serviceman killed in action that is remarkable for its paintwork and craftsmanship. The bottom line is that there’s something for everyone to see here. Bring the whole family, split up and arrange to meet an hour or three later and everyone can take their own personal journey through this incredible museum.

For more information visit:


NOTE: While I was there, I spent a bit of time (after I perused the museum) with two of the ladies (Tamara Jung and Dianna Beal) who work there to get their take on the facility. In this short interview, they talk about some of the events that the museum hosts and items that have caught their eyes as well.

By Larry Mason

Copyright © 2022 Larry Mason

TACM Elvis

When you arrive at the Tallahassee Automobile Museum you’ll be greeted outside by Elvis Presley and his Elvismobile Cadillac. Whatever you do, stay off of his blue suede shoes!

TACM panoramic

In this wide panoramic shot, you can see display cases on the left and right containing numerous items while the main car display is right in the middle of the first floor. The second floor also has a tremendous collection of cars, etc. to see.

TACM Lincoln

This is one of the six original hearses that was used to carry the body of President Lincoln to his final resting place. The museum has a map of that final journey on display.


Rick Mast’s NASCAR Cup car is surrounded by display cases of scale model vehicles of all types along with a Nomex ® driver’s suit and helmet.

TACM Steinway

One of numerous Steinway pianos on display that feature intricate artwork and carvings, add to the incredible collection of items here.

 TACM Batmobile crop

Multiple Batman movie cars are on display. Note the Penguin’s Duck car in the background.

TACM Woody

The “Woody” is street legal and built upon a modified 1980 Chevy Caprice frame. The body is made of red oak and plywood and is modeled after a 1931 Ford Model A.

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A large variety of pedal cars are “driven” by stuffed animals around an oval race track.

Photos and interview Copyright © 2022 by Larry Mason

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  505 Hits Podcast Dave Seyse – Docent, Motorsports Hall of Fame of America Tour (Part 4)

In this final interview with docent Dave Seyse, we get to go into the restricted area of the MSHF to see one of the most fascinating SCCA Can-Am cars of all time. To go along with Dave’s stories, check out the photos below to get a better appreciation for this super cool car. There’s also a bonus via his special access about another race car that is not to be missed. Enjoy!

By Larry Mason

Copyright © 2022 Larry Mason


Dave Seyse Shadow

Our tour guide and docent, Dave Seyse stands next to the super low-slung 1968 Shadow Mk 1 Can-Am car on display at the MSHF.

Shadow cockpit

Below the bazooka like air intake, notice that the steering wheel position is more like that in a go-kart and about the same size.

Shadow front 3qtr


This low angle photo shows off the wheel fans to cool the small front brakes and also the banned aerodynamic air brakes that lift out of the front fenders. Also prominent in this photo is the menacing looking air intake.

Shadow tires

To keep this car low to the ground required very small wheels and tires – 10” up front and 12” in the rear.

Shadow info board 1

This information board gives some details on Shadow’s Don Nichols attempt at aerodynamic superiority in the SCCA Can-Am Series.

Shadow info board 2

More information on the inspiration of the Shadow race car mystique and also a mention of talented motorsports author Pete Lyons and his 2020 book on Shadow race cars and Don Nichols.

Shadow rear

This close-up of the rear shows of how slick the aerodynamic profile is as well as where the rear air brakes pop up. In the lower opened section there are body flaps as well.

Shadow rear ducts

These rear body ducts could be opened to improve airflow or closed to provide additional air braking potential.

Ford what

The Ford Credit 88 which appears to be a Taurus driven by Dale Jarrett during his championship year is actually a show car. There’s an interesting story that Dave tells about this one.

Interview and photos by Larry Mason

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  641 Hits Podcast Jim Coleman – Docent, Motorsports Hall of Fame of America Tour (Part 3)

In Part 2, we had a personal tour of the MSHF by its president George Levy. During that tour, he introduced me to a couple of the knowledgeable docents to get even more behind the scenes stories. In this interview, you’ll hear from docent, Jim Coleman, who talks about “The Fabulous Hudson Hornet” that’s on display and interesting stories behind that car. He also talks about a Southern California racing legend, Hershel McGriff. Enjoy!

NOTE: Next week we’ll have the last installment of the MSHF with more behind-the-scenes stories by another one of the friendly and knowledgeable docents.

By Larry Mason

Copyright © 2022 Larry Mason

Jim Coleman Hudson Hornet

Our tour guide and docent, Jim Coleman stands next to the original “Fabulous Hudson Hornet” on display at the MSHF.

Hudson Hornet info crop

This sign board gives a bit more information on the Fabulous Hudson Hornet and how it inspired a character in the movie “Cars.”

Hudson Hornet seat

Unlike the interior of racing cars today, the Hudson Hornet was truly a “stock car” as you can see in this picture of the front seat and driver’s door panel.

RIR crop

Jim Coleman mentions Hershel McGriff who was one of the winningest drivers ever at Riverside International Raceway. As part of the MSHF Robert Petersen area is a layout of the famed racetrack from its early days.

Interview and photos by Larry Mason

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  723 Hits Podcast George Levy – President, Motorsports Hall of Fame of America Tour (Part 2)

George-Levy-Headhsot--1 MSHF President, George Levy

In Part 1, we had an introduction to the Motorsports Hall of Fame of America (MSHF) from the Hall’s President George Levy while at the Acura Grand Prix of Long Beach. As it turned out, Daytona Beach was in my travel plans so I had the opportunity to not only visit with George again, but also get a personal tour of this fantastic facility. In this interview you’ll come along with me while George shows off some of the distinctive vehicles and stories that resonate with him and visitors. By the way, you can follow along with the tour by looking at the photos below as we navigate around part of the facility. Enjoy!

NOTE: Upcoming, we’ll have two more parts to this tour as I was given some behind the scenes stories by two of the friendly and knowledgeable docents. For more information on the MSHF, please visit:

By Larry Mason Copyright © 2022 Larry Mason

Daytona entrance

Daytona International Speedway is the home of the Motorsports Hall of Fame of America.

MSHF entrance

This walkway will take your right to the entrance of the MSHF.

 MSHF banked

This photo highlights the wide variety of vehicles on display. This is only a small portion of what’s inside!

MSHF checkered flag

NASCAR shortened the 1974 Daytona 125 qualifying race to 112 ½ miles due to the fuel crisis in effect at that time. This is the original and unique checkered flag used for that race!

MSHF hydroplane

The Atlas Van Lines unlimited hydroplane is just one of the many unique racing machines you’ll find here at the MSHF, and like everything on display, it has a unique story behind it.

MSHF MT Challenger

The Mickey Thompson Challenger 1. This home-built, four-engine, wheel-driven speed machine went over 400 mph back in 1960 and set a record!

 MSHF Bluebird

Sir Malcolm Campbell’s Bluebird, a six-wheel streamliner, went nearly 300mph on the sands of Daytona Beach in 1935!

MSHF Helio

MSHF has two of inductee Helio Castroneves’ Indy 500 winning driver’s suits on display. This is just one of many of the displays for multiple racing champions and legends of motorsport. 

MSHF Denise Jag

One of the pioneering women in motorsports, Denise McCluggage not only was a successful race car driver, but also just as handy with the written word and camera at Autoweek magazine. Shown here is her 1956 Jaguar XK 140M sports car that she won her very first race in!

MSHF grp44

This beautiful Group 44 Jaguar XJR-7 IMSA GTP car campaigned by Bob Tullius won the last race it was entered in.

MSHF Petty and LV Olds

This is another fine example of a legendary race car driven by a legendary driver. In this case, it’s one of Richard Petty’s championship winning NASCAR stock cars. Notice “Miss Hurst” Linda Vaughn’s Hurst Oldsmobile behind it.

Interview and photos Copyright © by Larry Mason


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  500 Hits Podcast CHP Officer Craig Mosley Interview

During the weekend of the Acura Grand Prix of Long Beach, I stopped by the California Highway Patrol display in the Expo area. Officer Craig Mosley works for the CHP and as it turns out is a former student at Fast Lane Racing School. We had a nice chat about his experience at Fast Lane and how that’s helped him and his fellow officers when it came time to pass the Emergency Vehicle Operations Course (EVOC). With the Fourth of July holiday weekend coming up, he gives us some safety tips for city and highway driving and also what to do just in case you see those flashing lights in your rear view mirror. He’s truly a dedicated and professional officer. Enjoy!

By Larry Mason

Copyright © 2022 Larry Mason

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A former Fast Lane student, Officer Craig Mosley epitomizes professionalism.

Craig Mosley CHP crop

Safety, Service and Security is what Officer Craig Mosley provides on a daily basis.

Interview and photos by Larry Mason, Copyright © Larry Mason

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  304 Hits Podcast Tommy Kendall Interview

When the history books are written, one name will stand out amongst the greatest SCCA Trans Am drivers of all time – Tommy Kendall. Moreover, he’s had success in a number of different categories of race cars during his career and has raced with and against some of the greatest names in racing history. His comeback from massive lower extremity injuries suffered at Watkins Glen Raceway in June of 1991 proved his desire and determination to succeed no matter what. He won multiple championships after that shunt. Now retired (for the most part) from racing, he parlays his knowledge behind the microphone and in front of the camera to the delight of legions of racing fans.

After his duties as an MC during the “Racing Goes Safer, Driver Safety Seminar” hosted by the Stand 21 Safety Foundation at the 2022 Acura Grand Prix of Long Beach, we had a chance to catch up with Tommy and hear some incredible stories from his racing career. Enjoy!

By Larry Mason

Copyright © 2022 Larry Mason

TK head shot

Tommy Kendall is a Hall of Fame racing champion and is currently a host of The Torque Show.

 safety seminar Levy and Kendall crop

Motorsports Hall of Fame of America President George Levy and Tommy Kendall share the lectern for the 2023 class inductees announcement during the Stand 21 Safety Seminar at the 2022 Acura Grand Prix of Long Beach.

TK and Yves crop

After the Safety Seminar, Tommy Kendall paused for a quick photo op with Don Taylor (who organized the safety seminar) on his left and Yves Morizot (of Stand 21) on his right.

 TK and friends super crop

Following the Safety Seminar, Tommy Kendall shows off his copy of the book 50 Years with Stand 21 (signed by the author Yves Morizot). Tommy is standing next to George Levy (president of Motorsports Hall of Fame of America) and John Zimmermann (RACER magazine founding editor).

Interview and photos Copyright © by Larry Mason

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  363 Hits Podcast Josef Newgarden Interview

Josef Newgarden is a two-time NTT IndyCar Series Champion and a former Indy Lights Champion. He sat on the pole for the Acura Grand Prix of Long Beach in September 2021 and finished second. This year (2022) he qualified second and won the race! After the post-race press conference I walked with him back towards the paddock to grab this interview. He talks about his Indy Lights experience here, his new crew for 2022 at Team Penske and how he thinks his win at Texas Motor Speedway will help him going into Indy. Newgarden is on a roll. Enjoy!

NOTE: By winning at Road America on June12th, Newgarden captured the $1 million PeopleReady Force for Good Challenge bonus. The Challenge rewards the first driver to win on all three types of circuits – oval, street and road tracks – in 2022. The $1 million is split, with $500,000 going to Team Penske and Newgarden and $500,000 donated to Newgarden’s two chosen charities - SeriousFun Children’s Network and Wags and Walks Nashville.

By Larry Mason

Copyright © 2022 Larry Mason

 Newgarden wave crop

Josef Newgarden looks confident waving to the fans just before the start of the 2022 Acura Grand Prix of Long Beach.

Newgarden helmet

Newgarden attaches the HANS device straps to his helmet before getting into his Penske Chevrolet in Long Beach. Although the basic helmet design has remained the same, the colors have hanged during the 2022 season (as seen at Road America in June).

Newgarden helmet crop

Two-time NTT IndyCar Series Champion Josef Newgarden is aiming to add another star to his sleeve at the end of the year that would define him as a three-time champ.

Newgarden clip crop

Part of being fast is pushing the limits of adhesion. Coming into the pits during Friday practice, you can see where Newgarden scuffed the floor and white-walled his right-front tire on the unforgiving concrete barriers that line the Long Beach circuit.

Newgarden Bubba

A full crowd enjoys the action (and food and drink) while watching Josef Newgarden steer his way towards victory at the 2022 Acura Grand Prix of Long Beach.

Newgarden fountain crop

Newgarden pushes hard on his way to victory in the 2022 Acura Grand Prix of Long Beach. Notice how his right rear tire (specifically) is shredding over the coarse pavement.

Newgarden hairpin

Newgarden enters the world famous hairpin (Turn 11) on Shoreline Drive in the city streets of Long Beach on his way to Victory Lane.

Newgarden win crop

Winning any race will always bring a shout for joy, but winning in Long Beach is even better for Newgarden especially after his Indy Lights experience here.

Interview and photos Copyright © by Larry Mason

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  506 Hits Podcast Marcus Ericsson, Part 2

Marcus Ericsson won two races in 2021 and so far this year, the biggest race in the world – the Indianapolis 500! We spent some time chatting before Indy this year during the Acura Grand Prix of Long Beach weekend. In Part 1, he talked about his injury at the Grand Prix last year and his preparation coming into the new season. Here in Part 2, we focus exclusively on the Indy 500. He talks about his first laps ever at the Speedway and also what it’s like to qualify there using the tools within the cockpit. Enjoy! 

By Larry Mason

Copyright © 2022 Larry Mason

Marcus wave2 crop

Marcus Ericsson’s smile grew much bigger after winning “The Greatest Spectacle in Racing” – the Indy 500!

Marcus Shoreline

This car (minus the road course wings and Firestone Reds) is what took Ericsson on his 500 mile journey into the record books as an Indy 500 winner.

Marcus back crop

Marcus Ericsson has a great sponsor in Huski Chocolate. Currently only available for retail sale in Sweden and Norway, hopefully his American fans can enjoy the drink stateside soon.

Marcus Shoreline back crop2

This is pretty much the view (minus the Firestone Reds and the road course wings) that Pato O’Ward had for the last couple of laps of the 2022 Indy 500.

Marcus thumbs up crop

Ericsson made that two thumbs up after winning Indy and his $3.1 million share of a record purse of over $16 million!

Interview and photos by Larry Mason

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  527 Hits Podcast Marcus Ericsson, Part 1

Your 2022 Indianapolis 500 Champion, Marcus Ericsson, spent some time chatting with us before Indy this year during the Acura Grand Prix of Long Beach weekend. In this conversation he talks about what happened with the shunt at the AGPLB last year and what he’s done in the offseason to prepare to make 2022 another winning season with a shot at the championship. He also previews the Indy 500 and how his preparation is enhanced by his teammates and experience. He is as nice and unassuming as you’ll find in the IndyCar paddock and is now an Indy 500 winner. Enjoy!

NOTE: He crashed out in this year’s AGPLB with 19 laps to go when he got sideways between Turns 4 and 5 and ended up parking his damaged race car in the worker’s compound in almost the same spot as last year. He started the month of May off well with a fourth place finish on the Indianapolis road course. In Part 2 of the interview, you’ll hear details about what it’s like to qualify at the Speedway and much more.

By Larry Mason

Copyright © 2022 Larry Mason

Marcus wave crop

Marcus Ericsson waves to the crowd before the 2022 Acura Grand Prix of Long Beach.

Marcus adjusts glasses crop

Marcus Ericsson makes a quick adjustment to his glasses before hopping into his race car for Friday practice.

Marcus T10 crop

Ericsson pushes hard through Turn 10 during qualifying on Saturday in his immaculately clean race car. In the race photo of Turn 10 below, notice the rubber tire marks and clumps of rubber lodged in his front wings.

Marcus Shoreline back crop

Early in the race, Ericsson has passed Romain Grosjean and Will Power to run in sixth place down Shoreline Drive behind winning drivers (and  a couple of champions) Alexander Rossi (5th), Felix Rosenqvist (4th), Alex Palou (3rd), Josef Newgarden (2nd) and Colton Herta (not shown). 

Marcus fountain crop

Marcus Ericsson hits his apex perfectly around the fountain.

Marcus T5 crop

Using the curbs in Turn 5 is critical to lowering your lap times.

Marcus T10 a crop

Ericsson is shown here late in the race leading Romain Grosjean (who is on the Firestone Red alternate tires) but would crash out soon afterwards.

Marcus Turn 4

Ericsson is not the only driver to have made contact with the wall exiting Turn 4. You can see the tire marks on the wall from someone else. Unfortunately, the upcoming contact would put an end to his otherwise strong run.

Interview and photos by Larry Mason

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  536 Hits

2022 Indy 500 Preview

Who will win? That’s the million dollar-plus question and payday for the one guy fortunate enough to beat the 32 other competitors at this year’s Memorial Day weekend showdown. After a more than a week of practice and qualifying, there’s no denying that a car from the Ganassi armada of five immaculately prepared cars is certainly a favorite. All five of Chip’s cars qualified within the Top 12. Perhaps the favorite is six-time series champion (and 2008 Indy 500 winner) Scott Dixon who’s had a slow start to the year but showed his strength in practice and especially in qualifying to win the pole with the fastest pole speed ever at the Brickyard with a speed of 234.046 mph in his PNC Bank Dallara Honda. His teammate (and last year’s series champ) Alex Palou will start in the middle of row one flanked by Rinus VeeKay from Ed Carpenter Racing in his Chevy powered Dallara. 

It’s one thing to go fast with a tow (draft) and another to be fast on your own for four consecutive laps in qualifying. However, it’s going to be the driver with the best car to get through traffic and having flawless pit stops that will put them into a position to challenge for the win at the end of 200 laps. Of course luck can always play its part as well as good old fashioned race strategy. The race day forecast is for plenty of sunshine and a high of 81 degrees.

Two rookies with plenty of racing experience qualified in the Top 12 – Romain Grosjean, the fastest driver in the five-car Andretti Autosport stable, and Jimmie Johnson, another Ganassi entry. Our previous week’s guest on the podcast, Ed Carpenter, proved again that he can put fast cars on the track by qualifying fourth. Pato O’Ward (also in our previous podcast) who got bumped in 2019, qualified seventh this year and is very happy with his race car. He qualified just in front of his teammate Felix Rosenqvist. Where’s Team Penske? They’re in a better place than last year with Will Power being the quickest of their trio starting 11th after being in the last row last year. Two-time winner Takuma Sato will start in 10th for Dale Coyne Racing.

Who will drink the milk on Sunday? There are plenty of drivers who are capable. Can Helio Castroneves win his fifth? Can Joseph Newgarden continue his hot streak and win his first? There are eight former winners in the field and plenty of over-40 veterans versus the ambitious youngsters with stories spread throughout the field. Colton Herta sat on the pole at Long Beach and won on the Indianapolis road course two weeks ago so he’s also riding a strong wave of momentum. It should be another classic day at the Speedway back home again in Indiana. Enjoy!


NOTE: The race will be broadcast live on NBC at 8am PDT on Sunday, May29th. For a complete qualifying lineup and spotter’s guide, visit:

You can also visit: for additional information.

By Larry Mason

Copyright © 2022 Larry Mason

Dixon crop

Shown in road course trim here (big wings front and rear), Scott Dixon qualified on pole with an all-time Indianapolis pole track record at over 234 mph! Can he convert his fifth pole here to win for the second time?

Pato crop

If Pato O’Ward has anything to say about it, he’ll take his Arrow McLaren SP Chevrolet to his second victory this season and the biggest win of his career!

Photos by Larry Mason

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  448 Hits

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