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Family cars and stock cars under one roof in Roseville

Bill McAnally brings NAPA AutoCare Center, racing operation and jobs to town
By: Bill Poindexter/Roseville Press Tribune Sports Editor
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Whether you’re waiting on a brake job or a root canal, the waiting area isn’t the most exciting place in the world.

There seems to be a magazine suited for everyone but you, and the TV is never on your station.

What if, on the other hand, you could watch a late-model stock car undergo preparations for its next race while you’re having the oil changed in your late-model family car? Come Wednesday, you can.

Bill McAnally will hold a grand opening from 5-7 p.m. Wednesday for his new NAPA AutoCare Center at 900 Riverside Ave. in Roseville.

McAnally is moving his Bill McAnally Racing operation to the same location. At 40,000 square feet, it’s one of the largest NAPA repair facilities in the United States.

Sitting at home bored? Go to the new shop and hang out, watch racing highlights on one of the big-screen TVs in the spacious lobby or shop for diecast models, racing apparel and equipment at Hunt’s Race World inside the building.
This place sounds as much like a hangout for motorsports fans as an automotive repair shop.

“It’s a great tie because customers can check out our race cars,” McAnally said Wednesday following a tour and ribbon-cutting ceremony for family, friends and city dignitaries. “There are a lot of NASCAR fans in the Roseville and surrounding areas. They can come to our shop and get their car serviced and see what we’re doing on the NASCAR side of things at the same time. It’s so close to I-80. We make it nice enough for people to enjoy, it can almost be a destination.”

McAnally has had a NAPA business in Antelope for six years. He spotted the empty Roseville building and “couldn’t leave it alone.

“It’s something we’re really proud of,” McAnally said. “It’s a dream come true for us.”

One side of the bright, well-lit facility contains equipment to service cars, trucks, dualies and motor homes. McAnally said the business will produce 40 to 50 new jobs in Roseville.

The other side Wednesday was full of BMR stock cars, racks of racing engines, parts and state-of-the-art machines to prepare and maintain the racers throughout the 2012 season, including laser-leveled setup plates and a pull-down rig.

BMR runs two full-time cars in NASCAR K&N Pro Series West, driven by three-time champion Eric Holmes of Escalon and Canadian teenager Cameron Hayley. Two other BMR cars will be driven in Pro Series West on a part-time basis, and two cars will compete at All American Speedway.

“They’ll be preparing for the next race out of this facility,” BMR spokesman Don Langford said, adding that some employees also are part of the race team. “The guy who’s changing the oil and doing the engine tuneup could be the same guy that’s tuning on Eric Holmes’ car later in the week.”

The pull-down rig can simulate each Pro Series West track on which BMR cars will race, from Havasu 95 Speedway in Arizona on April 14 to Infineon Raceway in Sonoma on June 23.

“When they run the computer, that car will go through all 11 turns,” Langford said of Infineon’s road course. “This piece of equipment literally is programmed for whatever the banking and associations are for the new track. When they bring that car to the track, it’s already been set up for the banking. When they get to the track, it’s minor adjustments, not ballpark adjustments.”

Hunt’s Race World is moving its fan-friendly inventory of motorsports collectibles from its longtime location at Sunrise Boulevard and Winding Way in Fair Oaks into a showroom at McAnally’s new facility.

“I was made aware he had an available space over here, and really, we were looking for an opportunity to grow,” said Tony Hunt, an eight-time USAC champion driver who helps run the business with his family. “What better opportunity for us to combine our resources, network, and (it’s the) same sort of clientele.”

Contact Bill Poindexter at billp@goldcountrymedia.com. Follow him on Twitter at BillP_RsvPT.

GRAND OPENING

What: NAPA AutoCare Center/Bill McAnally Racing headquarters
When: Wednesday from 5-7 p.m.
Where: 900 Riverside Ave. in Roseville
Highlights: Autograph session with NASCAR Sprint Cup driver Martin Truex Jr., football throwing contest with special guest Delanie Walker of the San Francisco 49ers, meet BMR drivers Eric Holmes and Cameron Hayley, a chance to win a ride in a stock car, food, prizes and more.