SPEED™ To Broadcast 18 Hours Live From Inaugural Barrett-Jackson Orange County Collector Car Auction

RICK MINER: “THERE COULDN’T BE A BETTER PLACE FOR BARRETT-JACKSON TO HOLD A COLLECTOR CAR AUCTION THAN SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA, THE BIRTHPLACE OF AMERICA’S CAR CULTURE.”

HAGERTY FANTASY BID GAME HIGHLIGHTED by ENHANCED PER CAR PRIZING WITH 16-GIGABYTE iPAD; COVERAGE & FANTASY BID BEGINS FRIDAY, JUNE 25 at 5 P.M. ET

SPEED plans 18 hours of live coverage from the inaugural Barrett-Jackson Orange County Collector Car Event and ‘no reserve’ auction at the Orange County Fair & Events Center in Costa Mesa, Calif. This is the third of four auctions – Scottsdale (January), Palm Beach (April), Orange County (June) and Las Vegas (October) – slated for broadcast in 2010.

The on-air team is recognizable to regular Barrett-Jackson viewers; as SPEED’s Formula One Voice Bob Varsha offers play-by-play and Motor Trend Executive Editor, Matt Stone, who resides in nearby Glendale, Calif., provides color commentary. Former Southern California resident Steve Magnante, a leading muscle car expert and freelance automotive writer, is teamed with long-standing automotive enthusiast and NASCAR on FOX/SPEED play-by-play announcer, Mike Joy, on the auction block. Roaming the tents and providing storylines is Rick DeBruhl, who also previews cars for the network’s interactive Hagerty Fantasy Bid game.

“There couldn’t be a better place for Barrett-Jackson to hold a collector car auction than Southern California, the birthplace of America’s car culture,” said Rick Miner, SPEED SVP of Production & Network Operations. “Whether it’s hot rodding in Van Nuys, running the Pacific Coast Highway or cruising Hollywood Boulevard, the passion for great automobiles in this part of the country will make for a spectacular inaugural event.”

The aforementioned Magnante, who now lives in Massachusetts, has spent most of his life in Southern California, writing for Hot Rod and other high-profile magazines while collecting some of his favorite muscle cars. Magnante’s background has him tuned into this unique culture which dates all the way back to the late 1940s and encompasses a diverse group of automotive aficionados, each being represented within the Barrett-Jackson experience.

“The returning servicemen from WWII, the prosperity that grew out of the post-war boom economy and the technology that resulted from war-time production really came together in Southern California,” Magnante said. “The year around, these guys could play games with their hot rods or their regular cars. It really became ground zero for interesting automobiles.

“Of course, where these hot rods grew, so did a sports car culture,” Magnante continued. “In Torrey Pines (Calif.) and in and around the San Diego area, there were big places for the sports car groups as well (including one of the largest SCCA Nationals). Austin Healey, Triumph and some of the earliest MGs had some of their biggest customer sales on the West Coast. We see those crossing the auction block from time to time as well. What it basically came down to is that the weather was so good year around.”

Obviously, Southern California is best known for its film and television industry. So it’s no surprise that famous cars also have a prominent place at the inaugural auction, including the highly customized 1936 Ford Five Window Coupe (lot 382) that Monster Garage star Jesse James used as his personal ride. It has been featured in television shows, magazines and a popular auto parts retail store commercial. Another screen-friendly car set to sell at ‘no reserve’ is the 1970 Plymouth Road Runner (lot 362) known as ‘Hammer.’ Used as Vin Diesel’s car in the closing moments of Fast & Furious: Tokyo Drift and more prominently in the fourth installment of the Fast & Furious movie franchise, this sterling gray, 526-inch big block Mopar was also featured during an episode of Bud Brutsman’s popular Rides television show.

“In SoCal, you’re going to see a little more of a free style restoration, and people doing their own thing rather than being bound by a restoration manual that says you can only do things a certain way, like putting a chalk mark on the upper control arm,” Magnante added.

Additional hot items will be historic drag cars; including Jim Prescott’s bright red Chevrolet Impala (lot 82) known as ‘The Mouse Trap.’ Restored back to street legal condition, the 409-cubic-inch engine still carries the large port, 425-horsepower factory heads it had back in the day. Another car, lot 339.1, is a historic 1963 Ford Galaxie 500 hardtop ‘A’ stock West Coast racer campaigned by Leon Wright in the mid 1960s, and Carl Tovato after 1967. The burgundy-bodied drag car is powered by a 427-cubic-inch V8 and was restored with a four-speed Borg Warner T10 in 2003.

“Nostalgia for recreated or actual vintage drag cars is becoming big,” Magnante said. “They are coming on in the same way some Jaguars with racing history were coveted or race-proven Ferraris and such. It does seem like drag cars with history are also starting to come into the spotlight. There were hundreds, if not thousands, of drag cars all over the country that made their own little wave.”

The Hagerty Fantasy Bid Game is also a big part of every Barrett-Jackson Collector Car Auction on SPEED, and is set for the inaugural Orange County broadcast. Starting on Friday, 18 cars are selected to cross the block while the audience battles for a wide array of prizes.

Once SPEED’s DeBruhl introduces a selected car during the live broadcast, the audience can log on to www.speedfantasybid.com or www.SPEED.com with the opportunity to guess the final gaveled price of each car. Bidding closes as soon as the selected cars roll onto the auction block, and each prize will be awarded to the fantasy bid closest to final auction price without going over.

The inaugural Barrett-Jackson Orange County auction’s grand prize, based upon the most accumulated points earned throughout the four days of Hagerty Fantasy Bid competition, is a 46-inch wide screen 1080p high-definition television combined with a DVD home entertainment system. Additional prizes are also awarded as the first runner-up receives a Sony VAIO ‘Netbook’ computer and second runner up wins a Sony digital camera. Also, a 16-gigabyte iPAD is given to per car winners while three daily prizes, a 32-inch LCD high definition television, are available as well.

SPEED.com also has in-depth coverage set for the auction, as three exclusive cameras will be placed for live streaming of ‘on the block’ action, while SPEED.com automotive editor Bob Golfen is set for in-depth market evaluation and photography. Additional auction interactivity will include chats, trivia and on-site blogs.

Barrett-Jackson Collector Car Event Coverage

2010 – Costa Mesa, Calif.
(All Times Eastern)

Friday, June 25
Barrett-Jackson Collector Car Event 5 p.m. – 11 p.m. (Live)
Hagerty Fantasy Bid Game 5 p.m. – 11 p.m. (Live)

Saturday, June 26
Barrett-Jackson Collector Car Event 3 p.m. – 11 p.m. (Live)
Hagerty Fantasy Bid Game 3 p.m. – 11 p.m. (Live)

Sunday, June 27
Barrett-Jackson Collector Car Event 3 p.m. – 7 p.m. (Live)
Hagerty Fantasy Bid Game 3 p.m. – 7 p.m. (Live)

SPEED™, anchored by its popular and wide-ranging coverage of NASCAR, is the nation’s first and only cable television network dedicated to automotive and motorcycle racing, performance and lifestyle. Now available in more than 80 million homes in North America, SPEED, a FOX Sports property, is among the industry leaders in interactive TV, video on demand, mobile initiatives and broadband services. For more information, please visit SPEED.com, the online motor sports authority.

Media Contact

David Harris – SPEED, david.harris@speedtv.com, Office – 704.501.5796, Mobile – 704.756.9301

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