HAMILTON AND HAMILTON JR. "ALL SHOOK UP" OVER GRACELAND FESTIVITIES N0. 04 BAILEY'S DODGE GOES WHERE NO RACE VEHICLE HAS GONE BEFORE (MEMPHIS, TN) - 2004 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series Champion Bobby Hamilton and NASCAR Nextel Cup star...
HAMILTON AND HAMILTON JR. "ALL SHOOK UP" OVER GRACELAND FESTIVITIES
N0. 04 BAILEY'S DODGE GOES WHERE NO RACE VEHICLE HAS GONE BEFORE
(MEMPHIS, TN) - 2004 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series Champion Bobby Hamilton and NASCAR Nextel Cup star Bobby Hamilton Jr. took part in a unique ceremony at Elvis Pressley's beloved Graceland Mansion on Wednesday afternoon that served to unite the world of Rock and Roll and Motorsports.
Hamilton climbed behind the wheel of his No. 04 Bailey's Dodge at the Memphis Visitor's Center and proceeded down Elvis Pressley Boulevard with Hamilton Jr. in close pursuit in the Memphis Motorsports pace car led by a full police escort. Upon arriving at the gates of Graceland Hamilton, Hamilton Jr. and dignitaries from both Graceland and Memphis Motorsports Park swung open the gates and unveiled the track's new Elvis Pressley themed winner's trophy that will be utilized at the facilities NASCAR sanctioned events. Hamilton and Hamilton Jr. then received a special behind the scenes tour of the King of Rock and Roll's former Memphis home.
"That was a pretty cool deal right there," Hamilton said following the ceremonies. "We got to drive our Bailey's Dodge right up to the front of the gates of Graceland for the Elvis trophy unveiling and then I got to drive it right up beside the house and into the carport where not many vehicles have been since Elvis used to park his Cadillac's there. One of the neatest things for me was to watch Bobby Jr.'s reaction. He is a big Elvis fan and that kind of surprises me considering his generation wasn't necessarily the Elvis generation. Just watching him and the comments we shared together was one of the best things for me."
Memphis Motorsports Park's Elvis themed trophy is the only Elvis themed trophy in professional sports with the endorsement of Elvis Presley Enterprises. It will be presented to the winner of the track's NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series and NASCAR Busch Series winners over the course of the next five years. Only 12 such trophies will be created. Graceland will own one trophy and Memphis Motorsports Park will own another and the remaining 10 will go the fortunate winners of the tracks NCTS and NBS events.
"The Elvis trophy will provide a big incentive for all the drivers who race at Memphis Motorsports Park," Hamilton said. "They are going to really want to win that trophy. It is a big trophy, it weighs about 85 pounds. It took me and Bobby Jr. both to pick it up. Hopefully, if I am lucky enough to win the race on Saturday night my Bailey's crew will be right there to help me lift it up."
Hamilton will be driving his Bailey's Dodge at a slightly faster clip on Saturday July 23rd at Memphis Motorsports Park. Qualifying for the O'Reilly 200 is slated for 4:30 pm EDT and the green flag is set to wave at 8:00 pm EDT. All the action will be broadcast live nationally by The Speed Channel, MRN Radio and XM Satellite Radio.