This car is one of only 4 built by Melling Racing for the 1987 season when it set the NASCAR lap record of 212 mph at Talladega Superspeedway.
In 1987, Bill Elliott set the track record for fastest lap at Talladega at 212.809 mph and Daytona International Speedway at 210.364 mph. The mark at Talladega is still the fastest speed for any NASCAR event in history. In 1988, NASCAR introduced the carburetor restrictor plate to lower speeds. Bill Elliott won six races, including the Daytona 500 and Talladega 500, along with seven pole positions, and finished second in the final point standings.
In 1988, he won six races including the Southern 500 at Darlington and the Pepsi Firecracker 400 at Daytona, on his way to his only NASCAR Winston Cup championship.
This car is one of 4 1987/88 Bill Elliott Thunderbirds in existence. (One is in the Henry Ford Museum in Detroit, one is in the Elliott personal collection with the third in a private collection). It recently finished a complete mechanical restoration at Bill Elliott Racing where Ernie Elliott did the engine rebuild. The car was featured and documented in Vintage Motorsports Magazine where Bill Elliott set up the car and drove it car at Carolina Motorsports Park.
This car is on loan to the Simeone Foundation Automotive Museum from Mr. David Lloyds. We appreciate his generous contribution.