Optima Partners with K&N to Premiere Ultimate Street Car Invitational TV Special on SPEED

If you've ever been in the company of shinny show cars and sniped "Yeah, they look mean, but do they have bite in real life?" We have a show for you. Last weekend Optima Batteries announced that the 2011 Optima Ultimate Street Car Invitational, presented by K&N Filters and Wilwood Disc Brakes, will be nationally televised on the SPEED channel, premiering Saturday, February 25 at 2 p.m. ET.
2011 Optima Invitational TV special is scheduled to re-air on SPEED
2011 Optima Invitational TV special is scheduled to re-air on SPEED

The one-hour show brings together 50 of the hottest show cars on the planet for a free-for-all duke out. The 2011 Optima Invitational TV special showcases many of the leading "OMG" recipients from the SEMA Show, including Mary Pozzi's 1971 Chevrolet Camaro RS, which was selected as a "Sony Gran Turismo Awards" winner. Also, "Best of Show" vehicle winner, FilipTrojanek's 1966 Mustang, which was selected as the Sony "Gran Turismo Awards Best Domestic Car" winner, and Phil Gerber's 1967 Chevy Nova, the "Goodguys 2011 Optima Batteries Street Machine of the Year" winner.

What becomes understandable within only a few minutes of viewing the special is that these aren't just purdy-faces - them dogs have teeth - and their owners are steadfastly insistent about driving that point home. One entrant remarked, "I brought a knife to a gun fight, actually it's more like a laser-guided missile fight."

Earning the ultimate "street-cred" is a highly coveted prize indeed, and watching it unfold is thoroughly engaging, without the driver disconnect that other professional motorsports often issue. These are real cars, with real people driving, going really fast. It's in effect a reality show with bone fide street-legal cars from import and domestic manufacturers, tested to their limits through a series of performance and design events, in order to crown the 2011 Optima Ultimate Street Car.

Not all of us are geared to live on the edge all the time, but the Optima Invitational TV special promises to at least keep you on the edge of your chair. This year's show includes dramatic race footage shot from dozens of in-car, on-track and aerial high-definition cameras, along with exclusive interviews with some of the biggest names in the performance automotive industry. In addition, 2010's popular host and automotive enthusiast, Bill Goldberg will be joined by Adrienne Janic (who has hosted "Hot Import Nights" and "Overhaulin'"), together they provide viewers with an authentic on-track sensation that will have you smelling burnt rubber and pumping adrenaline. The dynamic duo will have you living in the moment with the participants as they tweak, drive, and will their cars to peak performance in pursuit of the ultimate street car title.

The Optima Invitational began in 2007 when director of Product Development and Marketing, Cam Douglass, recognized a need to prove that the specialty vehicles on the SEMA Show floor were built for speed and superior performance, and weren't just for show. The annual event takes place on the Saturday following the close of the SEMA Show, and each year it has gathered together some of the top automotive creations found anywhere, along with credible racing veterans and brand new talent. The fourth annual Optima Invitational in fact welcomed a limited number of spectators for the first time in the event's history. More than 500 enthusiasts flocked to Pahrump, Nevada in order to meet the participants and see what ensues when show meets go.

"This event is all about giving people a look at what these cars can really do when they are pulled off the show floor and put on the track to compete," said Douglass. "Each year the level of talent and vehicles gets better and better, and with the support we received from spectators and participants alike, I believe the 2011 broadcast is going to be our best yet."

The 2011 OPTIMA Invitational TV Show is scheduled to re-air on SPEED during the following times: (Re-air dates and times are subject to change)
  • Sunday, February 26, 2012 at 3 a.m. ET
  • Sunday, March 11, 2012 at 2:30 p.m. ET
  • Saturday, March 24, 2012 at 11 a.m. ET
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