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Bartering With Bacon

Bacon enthusiast trades meat for passage to events across the country.  Chase Moffitt reports.


Josh Sankey's cross-country journey gives a whole new meaning to the expression "bringing home the bacon."

For most of us, bacon is breakfast.

For Sankey, it's currency he uses to travel cross country in The Great American Bacon Barter, a national tour sponsored by Oscar Mayer.

Normally, Sankey is challenged with trying to find gas and a place to stay as he makes his way from New York to Los Angeles using 13,000 pounds of bacon.

On Wednesday in Pacific Junction, Iowa, Sankey sat behind the wheel at Mid America Motorplex, learning how to race cars, all part of the bacon bartering.

"I've got plenty of butcher thick cut bacon in this guy right here, that's what I'm just telling people we got this bacon, let's see how crazy and what we can get," Sankey said.

That's the point to the challenge.

Last week, Sankey said he bartered bacon for racing tickets.

This week, he was driving in them in the seat of a $40,000 Corvette on a track that was closed a year ago due to flooding.

"It's Oscar Mayer, it's a national brand and they are stopping right here in the Heartland to check us out and come to our racetrack, it's unbelievable," said Jim Howe, operations manager at Mid America Motorplex.

It's unbelievable that bacon buys business, Sankey said.

Racing cost 14 bricks of bacon per ride, three rides in all.

"We've been kind of upping the ante. I started off sleeping on couches and that's fine. I met some great people and then all of the sudden I'm in a mansion two nights ago. I got into a suite here in Omaha last night, through bacon barter," Sankey says.

The Great American Bacon Barter left Pacific Junction Wednesday headed for Denver.

The trip comes to a close Sunday when they'll hopefully arrive in Los Angeles.

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