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Alex Cortezzo III (Don Carrick photo)

Don Garlits had some tough choices to make during the first annual Mopar Action at The Grove on June 24-26.

The drag racing legend had double-duty through the weekend, driving his 2009 Dodge Challenger in races and judging in Saturday’s car show. Garlits’ Top 25 Picks were a hit among the dozens of Mopar lovers who brought their cars to show off on Saturday.

Garlits took nearly an hour, looking at each car one by one, and made his picks.

“There were lots of beautiful cars and it was hard to take 25 out of them,” Garlits said. “This has the making of a great event.”

“I’ve had the MOPAR show in Florida for over 20 years and it’s great,” Garlits added. “You take care of the people who love these cars and this one will grow, too.”

“Big Daddy” beats Beattie off the line in this round.

The weekend featured plenty of racing, with cars taking part in seven different classes. Garlits challenged J.C. Beattie from ATI Performance Parts in a series of match races. Beattie himself was a fan of the weekend.

“When (MGR general manager) Lex Dudas said they’re having this race, I said we’d be part of it,” Beattie said. “We have the car. When he said we’d race Garlits I said sure, we’ll see what we could do.

“For a first-time event, this was awesome.”

Both Garlits and Beattie also raced in the Late Model Hemi Challenge category with Garlits finishing runner-up to Alex Cortezzo III of Wind Gap, Pa.

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