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Champ consolidates racing collection
8 Elliott Auction pic
Race fans were in town Thursday, Friday and Saturday hoping to pick up a piece of NASCAR from a live auction held at Bill Elliotts shop in Dawsonville. - photo by Michele Hester Dawson Community News

A 30-year racing career can produce quite a collection of cars and memorabilia.

"There's stuff I dug out that I didn't know I still had," said NASCAR Champion Bill Elliott last week at his shop in Dawsonville where he worked to consolidate the assortment.

The live auction took place Thursday, Friday and Saturday and featured racecars, parts and a variety of items he and his family have accumulated over the years.

"At this point, I'm trying to downsize. Most of this stuff I've had for so long and to me, now is just a good time to pass along to somebody else," the racing legend said. "There's things out there that people can use that are racing today and other stuff that I've had for a quite a number of years. I keep moving it around and it's time to let it go and go on."

With Elliott's upcoming induction into the NASCAR Hall of Fame, he said there's no time like the present to unload some of his possessions, even though he admits he knows he'll look back and ask himself why he let go of some things.

"You always second guess what you did, but then again, you can't look back either. The older you get, the less stuff you need. You look around and I've got lots of stuff," he said. "It's just been an evolution of moving it here and moving it there. I don't need it anymore. I've got some stuff, I've been putting stuff into different museums and it's time that I just need to move on."

Among the auction items was a 1962 Ford Fairlane 500 that has been used in several promotional and TV spots including a recent NAPA Auto Parts commercial featuring Elliott, Dale Earnhardt Jr., and rising star in the NASCAR Nationwide Series, Elliott's 18-year-old son Chase.

"There's a lot of things out there, especially some of the cars, some of the parts and pieces, that ... I'd like for them to get some use for it rather than it sit over there in the storage," he said.

The news of Elliott holding an auction last week sent local fans into a frenzy, wondering if their local hero had plans to move his shop after the sale.

Elliott said that is not the case.

"I mean, really, there's nowhere to go. Right here is home and where we grew up, and you take it a step at a time," he said. "For me, like I said, I'm just trying to downsize what I've got done and what I've got going on here. Everything back there was part of what we did at some point in time, and it's part of the history."

Maria Vannice of Indiana-based MCS Auctions said buyers traveled as far away as Pennsylvania and Texas to try to pick up a piece of NASCAR history.