Star-struck Paul Ryan meets "The King"

BRISTOL, Va. - GOP vice presidential nominee Paul Ryan was visibly star struck Thursday, when just before hopping on his plane following a campaign rally in Bristol, Va. - he noticed a NASCAR racing legend waiting for him on the tarmac.

"You're Richard Petty, aren't ya...holy cow," a jubilant Ryan shouted over the roar of jet engines. "I drove up here I'm like that looks like Richard Petty!"

With more than 200 victories under his belt, "King Richard" has won more races than any other stock-car driver in history. He's also known for his charismatic style, decorative cowboy hat and signature shades.

"Did you get those rattlers yourself," Ryan joked as he pointed to the snake skin on Petty's brim. "It's a real pleasure man, a real pleasure."

After asking "can I get a picture with you," the Wisconsin congressman ushered over his wife Janna and three children for a photo op.

"Hey guys we're gonna get a picture with him," Ryan said. "Keep your sunglasses on!"

Bristol has a storied history when it comes to NASCAR races. The motor speedway here was built back in 1960.

As for Petty's surprise appearance - a campaign spokesman says "The King" is friends with the owner of the private airport Ryan was flying out of, and was tipped off that the congressman would be there.