The only way we can thank these people enough is to be the next guy who stops and helps fix a cool old car stuck along the interstate.

I couldn't agree more with Gary, although there's something to be said for trouble-free trips. Many a lunchtime conversation while out with the R&C staff and the guys over at Street Rodder has turned toward road trip adventures. The most interesting and memorable always have something to do with breaking down in a small town and the help from strangers that come with it.

At this time, we're still putting the details together for the driving tours to the Americruise event, but it's a good bet we'll be driving 1,500-plus miles in something that's guaranteed to provide some form of adventure.

The event in Lincoln is a little further along in the planning and is shaping up to be much more than a lawn chair event. Our lunchtime banter isn't just about broken water pumps and flat tires; the topic of how much fun some of the early rod runs were is a common topic. With this in mind, we are planning to incorporate some driver participation events within the Americruise weekend.One of the events will be an autocross course (reminiscent of the old Streetkhana) set up to test your hot rod's handling as well as your driving skills. Another will be a Go & Whoa that will test how fast your car accelerates and then stops within a set of predetermined lines. Both of these should provide many opportunities to haze the tires and test your reflexes.

Rod & Custom will also be awarding a Rod of the Year and a Custom of the Year at the event. These are not awards for trailer queens. These cars will not only be judged on their build quality and styling, they will be evaluated on how they do in some performance testing. We'll pick the Top Five in each class on Friday and then those cars must participate in a cruise to somewhere in Lincoln. On Saturday, these cars will also run for time in the road course as well as 40-0-mph brake test and 0-40-mph acceleration test.

The Americruise is shaping up to be an exciting event and we're looking forward to driving to Lincoln and putting some cars through their paces. The thought of watching participants smoking their tires and having some fun using their hot rods for their intended purpose is just the icing on the cake.

For more information about the Americruise, read about it in this month's issue, or for the latest developments, go to www.rodandcustommagazine.com