Mecum Kissimmee 2017 Auction Is Loaded With Significant Drag Racing History


December 14, 2016 By Mike Lee
Last updated on December 14, 2016

1968 Ford Mustang Race Car
Fezell and Runyon Collections Headline the World’s Largest Collector-Car Auction

Drag racing enthusiasts have lots to look forward to at Mecum Auctions’ Kissimmee 2017 classic and collector-car auction. Some of the most significant early muscle cars and vintage drag cars ever publicly offered—hailing from the collections of Don Fezell and Jackie and Gary Runyon—will make their mark by crossing the auction block among the headlining vehicles of more than 3,000 cars at the world’s largest collector-car auction in the Sunshine State, Jan. 6-15.

The Lifelong Collection of Don Fezell includes 43 high-quality collector cars, among them an amazing quartet of Chevrolet Impala Z11 lightweight drag racers—one that features the most famous Z11 ever built: the Bill “Grumpy” Jenkins-prepared “Old Reliable IV” (Lot S103). The Fezell lineup also includes a trio of 1968 Ford Mustang Cobra Jet Lightweights (Lots S119, S120 and S120.1), of which only 51 were ever produced for drag racing. Fezell has amassed a collection of such magnitude that to replicate it today would be very difficult, if not impossible. Names like Jenkins, as well as Dave Strickler, Phil Bonner, Ed Miller and Bud Faubel, classes like A/FX, S/S and A/MP, plus engines like Z11, Hemi and Cobra Jet, are all legendary, and all hold a place in this collection. The majority of Fezell’s vehicles have been unobtainable to collectors for more than 20 years, making this opportunity unprecedented.

To top it off, Fezell has one the greatest collections of performance and lightweight collector-car parts ranging from largely unobtainable factory aluminum body parts to rare engine assemblies and nearly everything in between. This amazing collection of parts and engines will cross the block Jan. 12-14, with the cars all crossing the block on Saturday, Jan. 14.

Former USAC midget, sprint and Silver Crown race-car owner Gary Runyon and his wife Jackie have each had a lifelong passion for automobiles. Today, along with their grown children, the Runyon’s are better known in the Indianapolis area as owners and operators of Runyon Equipment Rental and Runyon Surface Prep, but they’ve always maintained an active role in collecting. Two of the most significant cars set to cross the block in Kissimmee from their extensive and impressive collection are the Lee Smith rare altered-wheelbase 1965 Plymouth Belvedere A/FX Haulin Hemi II (Lot F107) and the 1963 Pontiac Catalina Swiss Cheese (Lot F108) that was sponsored by America’s Largest Pontiac Dealer—Packer Pontiac of Detroit. With nearly 50 cars from the Runyon Collection set to cross the auction block Friday, Jan. 13, it is an extraordinary opportunity to own a car that has been thoroughly vetted by one of the most passionate people in the collector-car hobby.

The Fezell and Runyon cars are only the tip of the iceberg of significant drag-racing examples on offer at Kissimmee, as shown by the Dale Reed Collection’s Bob Glidden-driven 1968 Ford Mustang Race Car (Lot T132), the Don Grotheer-driven 1968 Plymouth Barracuda BO29 Super Stock (Lot S172) and the Max Sterling-raced NHRA Springnationals-winning 1962 Pontiac Super Duty White Lightning (Lot S248).

The Kissimmee 2017 auction is open to sellers, buyers and spectators. Bidder registration is $100 when completed online in advance, or $200 after auction start; registration includes admission for the bidder and a guest for all 10 auction days. General admission tickets are available online in advance for $20 per person, per day, or at the gate for $30; 10-day auction passes are available for $200, and children 12 and younger receive complimentary admission.

Persons interested in consigning a vehicle to be auctioned at Mecum Kissimmee 2017 can visit Mecum.com or call (262) 275-5050 for complete details about the consignment process and pricing. To view the list of consigned vehicles or to register as a bidder for this and all Mecum auctions, visit Mecum.com or call (262) 275-5050. Mecum Auctions’ website is updated daily with the latest consignments including detailed descriptions and photographs of the vehicles.