2019 Carlisle Ford Nationals is the Biggest Ever

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Carlisle Ford Nationals

Mustang was the star of the show, but the F-Series, Ranger, Bronco and Econoline were all represented.

On the weekend of May 31 through June 2, the 2019 Carlisle Ford Nationals were held at the Carlisle Fairgrounds in Pennsylvania and with nearly 3,200 cars, trucks, vans and SUVs on hand, it was the biggest all-Ford event held at the well-known showgrounds. As is the case with any big Motor Company show, the Mustang was the most common vehicle on the grounds, with literally every possible iteration of the famed pony car on display, but just about every other Ford product in the company’s history was represented.

Of course, serving as the best-selling vehicle in America for the past four decades, the F-Series trucks were also well-represented, as were the Ranger, the various vans and all of the sport utility vehicles in the company’s history. Today, we bring you a look at some of those trucks, vans and SUVs, in case you didn’t make it to Carlisle this year.

Ford Trucks at Carlisle 2019

Sprawling Ford Show Field

The centerpiece of every event held at the Carlisle Fairground is the gigantic show field, with vehicles lined up as far as the eye can see. The venue has a sort of bowl shape to it, with the center of the area having the grandstands, stage and burnout area, as well as the manufacturer’s midway. Extending out from that central area are rows that have be hundreds of vehicles long, stretching up the hill in every direction.

Ford Trucks at Carlisle 2019

The vehicles are grouped predominantly by model and type, so trucks are parked together, with unique models like the Lightning or the classic Broncos parked in groups. This allows for easier judging for the hundreds of awards, but it also creates an amazing spectator’s experience, with many similar vehicles grouped together, allowing everyone to see how much one vehicle car vary from the next.

In addition to the rows of vehicles parked in the grass, the Carlisle Ford Nationals has an assortment of buildings that are dedicated to specific types of show vehicles. This year, the main display building was reserved for the Fox Body Mustang, Fox Chassis, Mach 1 and Boss displays.

As car shows go, there are few all-Ford shows that come close to rivaling Carlisle, but the show is just one part of the event.

Ford Burnouts, Bikinis, Swap Meet and More

As mentioned above, there is a stage with grandstands in the middle of the Carlisle Fairgrounds and that is where the bikini contest and burnout contest are held. By the way, the burnout competition was won by a classic F-Series truck.

This is also where special presentations are held and this year, spectators got an in-depth briefing on the new Shelby GT500 with Chief Engineer Carl Widmann. Near the grandstands, you will find all sorts of food vendors, the official Ford Motor Company display and a collection of other manufacturer’s displays, including Roush and Saleen. Further back past the grandstands, there are many more vendors, as you get into the huge swap meet area.

Ford Trucks at Carlisle 2019

Finally, in addition to the show, the swap meet, the burnout competition, the bikini contest and the vehicle introductions, the Carlisle Ford Nationals offers a dyno, an autocross competition, test drives in new Ford vehicles and thrill rides with pro drivers in various Motor Company vehicles.

In short, the Carlisle event is one of the best all-Ford shows in the world, so if you are a fan of the brand, you want to make sure that you attend at least once. Even if you live too far away to drive your Ford vehicle, it is still an amazing event to attend as a spectator. The 2020 event is being held on June 5 through the 7 next year, so you can start planning your trip to Pennsylvania now.

Giant Gallery

We dug through the 17 pages from the event’s Flickr account and from those 1,600+ pictures, we picked out the best examples of the Ford trucks, vans and SUVs on display, but there are many more. If you are a general Ford fan and you would like to see more than just the trucks at the Carlisle event, click here to check out the entire gallery for a complete look at everything from the show field to the swap meet to the burnout contest to the ladies of the bikini contest.

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"Before I was old enough to walk, my dad was taking me to various types of racing events, from local drag racing to the Daytona 500," says Patrick Rall, a lifetime automotive expert, diehard Dodge fan, and respected auto journalist for over 10 years. "He owned a repair shop and had a variety of performance cars when I was young, but by the time I was 16, he was ready to build me my first drag car – a 1983 Dodge Mirada that ran low 12s. I spent 10 years traveling around the country, racing with my dad by my side. While we live in different areas of the country, my dad still drag races at 80 years old in the car that he built when I was 16 while I race other vehicles, including my 2017 Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat and my 1972 Dodge Demon 340.

"Although I went to college for accounting, my time in my dad’s shop growing up allowed me the knowledge to spend time working as a mechanic before getting my accounting degree, at which point I worked in the office of a dealership group. While I was working in the accounting world, I continued racing and taking pictures of cars at the track. Over time, I began showing off those pictures online and that led to my writing.

"Ten years ago, I left the accounting world to become a full-time automotive writer and I am living proof that if you love what you do, you will never “work” a day in your life," adds Rall, who has clocked in time as an auto mechanic, longtime drag racer and now automotive journalist who contributes to nearly a dozen popular auto websites dedicated to fellow enthusiasts.

"I love covering the automotive industry and everything involved with the job. I was fortunate to turn my love of the automotive world into a hobby that led to an exciting career, with my past of working as a mechanic and as an accountant in the automotive world provides me with a unique perspective of the industry.

"My experience drag racing for more than 20 years coupled with a newfound interest in road racing over the past decade allows me to push performance cars to their limit, while my role as a horse stable manager gives me vast experience towing and hauling with all of the newest trucks on the market today.

"Being based on Detroit," says Rall, "I never miss the North American International Auto Show, the Woodward Dream Cruise and Roadkill Nights, along with spending plenty of time raising hell on Detroit's Woodward Avenue with the best muscle car crowd in the world.

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