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THE ROCK FATHER Magazine

The Craftsman Club wants to know: Are YOU Made to Race? (Giveaway)

Craftsman CrewTHE ROCK FATHER has partnered with Sears as a paid member of the Craftsman Crew. Are you #MADEtoRACE?

As a grownup, one thing I really wish I had the skill to do is fix up some old cars and take them out for a little old-school racing action. The only engine that I ever personally rebuilt was one for a go-kart, and I did that back in high school. I wish I'd learned more years back, but one thing I know for sure is that it's not only vehicles that can be "Made to Race," but people as well. Looking back, I'm fairly confident that I was #MADEtoRACE from the get-go - circa 1976. Just look at that little Renault Racing suit...

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The Mystery of the Topper Toys Johnny Express Truck...

Last week, the girls and I did something that we rarely do - we stopped at a garage sale. Truth be told, we actually turned around to go back to a garage sale we'd already passed, just because I'd spotted some big, old TONKA Trucks sitting out there. The sale was actually at a construction company, so it was pretty perfect that they'd have toy construction gear, but most of the TONKA stuff (some dating back to the 60s) was in pretty rough shape - except for one. With the sandbox in mind, the girls and I selected a completely working 1991 TONKA Mighty Crane that still has a lot of play left in it. As I put it in the trunk, the guy came over and pointed out the shell of an old Buddy L truck, and something I'd never seen before... a flatbed truck labeled "Johnny Express." I wasn't really interested at first, but when he showed me a box of parts for it, I figured it was worth a shot - again with the sandbox/outdoor play in-mind. I had no idea I was purchasing a legend.

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Giveaway - Win a Full Set of Exclusive Tom & Jerry 75th Anniversary Series Hot Wheels Vehicles!

Mattel has been doing some really fun things with Hot Wheels lately, one of which are multiple series' of vehicles with themes rooted in pop culture history. Many of these are retailer exclusives that are offered as sort of a "one-and-done" thing - a big shipment arrives in one shot, and when they're gone, they're gone. For families and casual collectors, sometimes completing a full set is a challenge, as there tends to be one or two hard-to-find cars in the set. Recently, Hot Wheels issued a six-car, Tom & Jerry 75th Anniversary Series that was created to commemorate the MGM Cartoons that won Academy Awards from 1940-1957. I've recently acquired a set, and I'm giving all of you a chance to win it, right here on THE ROCK FATHER Magazine!

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Racing: Danica Patrick preps for 2016 and Beyond with Nature's Bakery...

I don't often talk "business" publicly, but when it comes to sponsorships on this very website, I've told a few folks that I look at it a lot like running a NASCAR Team. You look for partners that are a great fit, and you do good for them, because at the end of the day, the sponsors are there to help achieve a goal - and that's to keep on racing (or in my case, writing). On the actual racing front, Danica Patrick's "ride" was in question for a bit, but now any uncertainty has been put to rest as Nature's Bakery has joined Stewart-Haas Racing (SHR) to become the primary sponsor of driver the No. 10 team in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series beginning with the 2016 season. Hopefully my girls and I will be able to see the new car in-action when it hits the track next year...

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Test Drive: Rockin' the Road in the 2016 Scion iM and iA

When I placed my special-order for one of the very first 2005 Scion xB's delivered to the Midwest back in 2004, I was exactly the kind of buyer that Toyota was hoping would jump into their Scion brand. Launched a year prior with availability only in California, I first laid eyes on the iconic "box" on a trip to Las Vegas in the Fall of 2003 and was immediately enamored by the vehicle. My wife allowed me to indulge my ongoing KNIGHT RIDER fixation by ordering an xB in Black Sand Pearl, complete with all the red adornments that we could afford - from red racing pedals to red LED light bars under the dash and seats. There would be LED cupholders, along with multi-color LED cycling on the in-dash Pioneer stereo head - one that would power the custom Bazooka Tube in the trunk. 11 years and 160K miles later, that little xB is in a lot of ways like my R2-D2 - sure, there's better options out there, newer models available, and mine is essentially battered, beaten and somewhat broken in some places - but we've had a lot of adventures together, and I'm not ready to part with it just yet... though it's days are extremely numbered. Being a longtime Scion fan that was there in the beginning, I've always had my eye on their latest offerings every year at the Chicago Auto Show (and the special vehicles that they create for the SEMA Show), so it was exciting to be invited to join the Scion Team in Grand Rapids, Michigan to get up to speed on where the brand is at age 12, and to go hands-on with pre-production prototypes for the Scion iM and iA - both of which will go on-sale beginning September 1, 2015.

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