Whenever GoodGuys Rod & Custom Association holds a car event, there are two things you can expect: an impressive collection of colorful custom builds and a throng of car enthusiasts, with a passion for these nostalgic machines. Now in its 30th year of promoting classic car shows, GoodGuys hosts 20 car events across the country. Although their primarily focus is 1972 and older vehicles, on Super Sundays, their show field is open to all years of American-made street cars. It’s obvious by the turnout at these GoodGuy events that the collector car hobby is alive and well, and growing in popularity.
The 16th GoodGuys PPG Nationals
The PPG Nationals, which is held at the Columbus, Ohio Expo Center, is one of GoodGuys premier events of the season, this year attracting 6,200 show cars and over 100,000 spectators. Along with a 430-booth vendor fair, other activities included an Autocross competition, valve cover racing, model car building for the kids, and live music by the Van Dells. And, to complement the carnival atmosphere of this three-day event, there were plenty of food and beverage vendors to keep everyone fueled up. You could check out the cars by taking off on foot, riding the sky lift, or enjoying the cruise bys in the comfort of your lawn chair in the shade.
The Best of the Best Awards
For serious custom car builders, the GoodGuys Street Rod and Street Machine of the Year competitions are the proving grounds for showcasing their talents. Although some of the selection criteria, such as fit, finish, and attention to detail, are applied to both categories, the Street Rod competition focuses more on traditional hot rods, while the Street Machine category places emphasis on performance and handling. Here’s a look at this year’s finalists and winners.
Street Rod of the Year
Finalists: 1934 Ford 4-door, 1937 Chevy Coupe, 1934 Ford Coupe, 1933 Ford Roadster
Winner: 1940 Ford Coupe
This 1940 Ford, named “Checkered Past,” has chrome, stylized checkered flags tastefully placed around the bright work of the car. In a field of elites, this winner of the prestigious Ridler Award at the Detroit Autorama earlier this year, is destined to become one of the great all-time classics. Just pop the hood, and take a look at the blown flathead Ford V8, which in and of itself, is a work of art.
Street Machine of the Year
Finalists: 1969 Firebird, 1967 Nova, 1965 Corvette Coupe, 1969 Camaro Convertible
Winner: 1969 Ford Torino
The winner of the Street Machine of the Year, a 1969 Ford Torino, was designed to capture the look of the winning Torino NASCARS of the ’69 race season. This lean fastback, which was fine tuned to the nth degree, both in body style and mechanics, proved its mettle by turning in the fastest Autocross time against the other finalists in the Street Machine of the Year competition. Its build includes a high-tech suspension, and the legendary Boss 429 power plant, equipped with a sinister looking fuel injection setup.