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Car Show: 2020 Grand National Roadster Show

2020 Grand National Roadster Show

Pomona, CA
Sunday, January 26, 2020
Photos by: Chadly Johnson

At its 2020 awards ceremony, the Grand National Roadster Show presented two of the custom car world’s most prestigious awards – the America’s Most Beautiful Roadster (AMBR) award and the Al Slonaker Memorial Award.

The AMBR award is bestowed each year on the finest “open” hot rod in the USA. This year’s winner, the 1932 Ford Roadster “’32 Kugel Muroc No.4” owned by Monte Belsham and built by Jerry Kugel, defeated nine other contenders for the title’s $12,500 prize (provided by ARP) and was immortalized on the award’s 9.5-foot tall perpetual trophy beside a “who’s who” of hot rodding, including legendary builders like George Barris, Andy Brizio, Boyd Coddington, Barry White, Troy Ladd and Chip Foose.

The '32 Roadster is one of ten Highboy Roadsters built by Jerry Kugel. Originally made for Nick Barron, the car was modified and painted by Sqeeg’s Kustoms. It's powered by an LS1 with Hilborn injection and a 4L60-E transmission.

The Al Slonaker Memorial Award was on the same level of importance as the AMBR award this year, with the same $12,500 prize purse thanks to award sponsor ARP. This year's winner, the 1936 Willys Model 77 owned by Ron and Vicki Ernsberger and built by The Tin Man’s Garage, is now officially ranked as this year's top custom. The Al Slonaker Memorial Award is dedicated to the memory of Al and Mary Slonaker, who founded the GNRS in 1949. It has been presented to the best non-roadster auto at the show every year since 1974.

The ’36 Willys boasts a 498 cubic inch Arias V6 Hemi married to a Tremec TKO 5-Speed. The build features a scratch built cab, bed, fenders and a heavily reworked front clip. The paint, done by The Refinery by Adam Krause, is PPG Rosso Mugello Ferrari Red with six coats of clear over two coats of red paint.

More than 600 awards were presented during the GNRS' closing ceremonies. The event showcased more than 490 excellent roadsters, hot rods, muscle cars, customs and more and attracted 50,000 fans over the course of the weekend.

The GNRS also featured an exhibit called “Drag Racing Then and Now” in 2020. Presented by Lucas Oil and sponsored by Cragar Wheel, it hosted a curated selection of important, unique and stylish dragsters from throughout history. This year’s show featured appearances by celebrities from across the auto enthusiast community. Billy Gibbons of ZZ Top and Michael Anthony of Van Halen both in attended, while Mike Ness of Social Distortion displayed a 1954 Chevrolet. This year’s “Builder of the Year” was Dave Kindig, owner of Kindig-it Design and host of Bitchin Rides.

The annual pin stripers auction raised money for Teen Challenge in memory of the late Nicole Meguiar, daughter of Meguiar’s Polish’s Barry Meguiar. The auctions took place on Saturday and Sunday and raised $50,000.

For more information about the Grand National Roadster Show and for the full list of 2020 award winners, please visit RodShows.com.

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