When you watch the YouTube video above, the name Craig Jackson may or may not sound familiar to you. He seems like just any other wealthy car nut who has a massive collection of awesome cars that most of us can only dream of standing next to, let alone owning any of them. As the video progresses, Jackson shares his affinity to the automobile, stating that he loves musclecars and sports cars. He’s already sounding like our kind of gearhead.
Then you start to see something familiar as you tour down the hallways of this multimillion dollar home and head out to the garage. It still doesn’t hit you as you see the pictures on the wall, because you know that you’re about to see the part of the home that means the most to you. Sure, the house is nice and all that with it’s massive 20,000 sq. ft. layout, but any true gearhead and car nut like us couldn’t care less about the rest of the house, we want to see the garage – and, of course, the cars he keeps there.
Once in the circular garage there is a musclecar at each hour-mark, and it’s unlike any other garage you’ve ever seen. The centerpiece to the garage is a Bugatti Veyron, an incredible car in it’s own right – even for those who love American musclecars. On the side of the Veyron is the Barrett-Jackson logo, and you start to think, “Craig Jackson, Barrett-Jackson… could it be?”
And the answer is yes, Craig Jackson is one and the same, Chairman and CEO of the famed Barrett-Jackson collector car auction company that his father, Russ, and Tom Barrett had started back in 1971. Their joint venture announced themselves as the premier collector car auction companies in the world.
Russ Jackson had passed away in 1993, and Craig Jackson took over the helm in 1997 after being involved in the day-to-day activities that year. It was also the first year that the Barrett-Jackson auction aired on SPEED.
Jackson would be responsible for adding other venues to the famous Scottsdale, Arizona, location in the years that followed. Other locations include Palm Beach, Las Vegas and Orange County, California. Over the years, many celebrities have put up their own personal cars to cross the blocks, including Reggie Jackson, Alice Cooper, Sammy Hagar, Bill Goldberg, Tony Stewart, Jesse James, Jay Leno and of course, Carroll Shelby himself, among many others.
In his collection, you’ll find that he truly is one of those guys who doesn’t discriminate: there’s a Ford GT, a blown street rod, Mustangs, Corvettes, Challengers, a couple Cobras, more Mopars, and then what he calls his pride and joy. Although he loves the Veyron, he is especially proud of one car in particular: his 1970 HEMI ‘Cuda convertible.
With all the attention that the HEMI ‘Cuda convertible has gotten lately, it’s pretty cool to see that it’s Jackson’s favorite car. There were only 14 made that year, and he tells the host that it’s worth about two-and-a-half million. The In-violet ‘Cuda with it’s white interior is the only one made with that color combination.
And showing that he is a true gentleman in all sense of the word, he showed us something that he had to get for his girlfriend, Carolyn Mullany. He said that every time he gets a car, Carolyn gets something, too, so he commissioned a pair of Bugatti Veyron shoes to be made for her. We’re not sure what the performance of the shoes is like, but they are definitely the accessory to have when out in the Veyron. If you think Jackson doesn’t drive his cars, his Veyron has 13,500 miles on it, making it “the highest mileage Veyron in the world”, Jackson said.
The video host got an opportunity to take a quick spin in the Veyron, and of course it has the rest of us envious, as if the garage itself isn’t enough. Jackson said he built the garage into the mountain behind it and with the solid terrazzo flooring he wanted something to absorb the sounds in the garage so he had leather panels made for the walls, much like that in the street rod he keeps there. The lighting overhead was patterned after the Shelby Green Hornet wheel one one of his other favorites.
But don’t think that 13 cars is all he has stashed away here, there’s even a side garage that shoots off the main garage with a few more awesome cars stacked up on lifts. So what do you think would be your biggest problem with a collection like this? If you’re anything like Jackson, your biggest dilemma would be deciding which car to drive. So which would be your favorite car to drive, the Veyron? Then when you realize that the other cars need to be driven, too, which do you drive next?