Top 10 Contenders and Winner of the America’s Most Beautiful Roadster Award at the 2020 Grand National Roadster Show

2020 America's Most Beautiful Roadster winner 1932 Ford Kugal Muroc Roadster owned by Monty Belsham
The 2020 AMBR trophy winner is Monty Belsham’s flamed ’32 Kugal Muroc highboy roadster. This one is the fourth of 10 limited edition dry lakes-style roadsters that originally sold as an unfinished roller for $115K. For that price, engine, wheels, tires and steering wheel were not included. Belsham’s Kugal was originally built for Nick Barron by Angie’s Auto Center with body and paint by Mike’s Street Rods. Squeeg’s Kustoms was tasked with the new repaint, flames and other modifications that you see here.

For hot rodders cruising throughout the western hemisphere, the big event that signifies the beginning of the year is the Grand National Roadster Show in Pomona, CA. It’s billed as the “granddaddy of all shows” and whether that reference is based on the quality of entries or sheer numbers, it fits. Every building on the Fairplex grounds is filled to capacity with more than 500 show vehicles and on Saturday and Sunday, nearly 1,000 more will fill the outdoor areas to compete in the Drive-In show.

CLICK HERE for show coverage and photo highlights from the 2020 Grand National Roadster Show

2020 America's Most Beautiful Roadster winner 32 Ford Kugal Muroc Roadster owned by Monty Belsham
Powering the 2020 AMBR winner is a Chevy LS-1 with Hilborn injection and lots of chrome and polish. The beautiful flame job by Squeeg’s Kustoms continues under the Kugal Muroc ’32 hood.

While participation in this 71-year-old show is open to all makes and models of cars, trucks and vans, the roadsters (open-topped hot rods) are what this show is all about. Each year in building four of the Fairplex, an elite group of roadsters vie for a nine-foot-tall trophy that comes with the title of America’s Most Beautiful Roadster. At this year’s GNRS, there were 10 AMBR entries, each one of them possessing unique qualities that puts the keen eyes of the professional team of show judges to the ultimate test. Every paint job is flawless and the color palette ranges from traditional hot rod red or black to subtle, earthy tones that accentuate bodies that have been worked to perfection.

2019 AMBR Winner George Poteet's 3 Penny Roadster
Last year’s AMBR winner was George Poteet’s Three Penny Roadster. This ’36 Ford is powered by a small-block Ford with Edelbrock E-Street aluminum cylinder heads.

Take a look back at our coverage of the 2019 Grand National Roadster Show HERE

America’s Most Beautiful Roadster for 2020 is the ’32 Kugal Muroc No. 4, one of 10 Muroc highboy roadsters built by Jerry Kugal that consists of a highly modified hand-formed body on a custom Foose/Kugal-designed frame. This one was originally built for Nick Barron and is now owned by Monty Belsham of Houston, British Columbia. To bring this rare rod to its current state while adding a whole new look to it. Monty delivered the ’32 to Squeeg’s Kustoms in Chandler, AZ, for the repaint, flames and other modifications. Marcel’s Custom Metal gets credit for the metal work while Gage’s Custom Interiors stitched up the seats, console and door panels with red upholstery trimmed in black. Power comes from a Chevy LS-1 fed by Hilborn stacks and is backed by a 4L60E transmission.

2000 AMBR Winner Chip Foose 32 Roadster
The “0032” Roadster built by Chip Foose was on display at GNRS. This sleek black hot rod was originally sketched by Chip Foose who was hired full-time by Boyd Coddington in 1993. No stranger to the spotlight, this car was once painted bright yellow and won the AMBR in 1996 as the Boydster II. It was redesigned by Foose two years later to what you see here and again won the AMBR in 2000.

Only the AMBR judges know how close the voting was for this year’s contest, but you can see for yourself how difficult a task this selection was. All 10 of these roadsters are winners in their own right and we were lucky enough to see them up close and in person.

2020 GNRS Ivy Reed 27 Roadster
The “Ivy Reed” ’27 Ford Roadster is owned by John Ivy with a ’51 Ford Flathead built by J.M.S. Racing and Shrader’s Speed Shop. The rest of the drivetrain includes a transmission from a ’39 Ford with a Winters Quick Change rear end. The arrow-straight body is coated in a greenish-gray color from a ’57 Porsche 356. Luke Delay shaped the track nose and Rogellio’s Auto Upholstery stitched the interior.
2020 GNRS Ivy Reed 27 Roadster
2020 GNRS Ken Katashio Roadster from Japan
The Boyd Red ’32 Ford Roadster called “K’s Roadster” comes all the way from Japan and was built in memory of its owner, Ken Katashio who started the build but was unable to finish it when he passed away in 2015. This full-fendered hot rod is motivated by a Chevy Performance 383 with dual Edelbrock carbs, manifold and Classic Series valve covers.
2020 GNRS Ken Katashio Roadster from Japan
2020 GNRS Ken Katashio Roadster from Japan
2020 GNRS Lil Evil 32 Roadster
Mike Dwight’s all black “Lil Evil” 1932 Ford Roadster has a wicked rake with big and little wire wheels and tires with smoothed-out sidewalls. In the engine compartment is a 347 Ford rated at 385 horsepower with a Tremec five-speed sending power to a Winters quick-change rear end.
2020 GNRS Lil Evil 32 Roadster
2020 GNRS Brownstone Roadster
Another full-fendered AMBR entry is Tom Firth’s and Jodi Lant’s ’32 “Brownstone Roadster” named after its metallic monochrome color. Stoker’s Hot Rod Factory in Upland, CA, gets credit for this build featuring a Ford Flathead V8 topped with two Stromberg 97 carburetors.
2020 AMBR Brownstone Roadster
2020 GNRS 27 T-Bucket Leg Show
Older hot rodders might remember Walter and Thenia Sigsbey’s “Leg Show T” from the January 1971 cover of Rod & Custom magazine. Back then this T-bucket was owned by Danny Eishstedt who won its class in the 1970 GNRS. The 1915 Ford has been repainted by Dan Gogh with a Ron Mangus top and interior, and it’s powered by an Enderle-injected small-block Chevy.
2020 GNRS 27 T-Bucket Leg Show
2020 GNRS Lady Laird Lincoln 32 Ford Roadster
The “Lady Laird Lincoln” is a ’34 Ford Roadster built by Adams Hot Rod Shop and owned by Brandie Laird from Bear, DE. Power comes from a Lincoln V12 engine with H&H heads.
2020 GNRS Lady Laird Lincoln 32 Ford Roadster
2020 GNRS 32 Ford Mower Roadster
The “Mower Roadster” has nothing to do with yard work. It’s what George Mower calls his ’32 Ford Roadster with paint and fabrication by Showtime Rod & Kustom. It’s got an interior by Ron Mangus, wiring by Get Wired and a Chevy LS-1 for power.
2020 GNRS 32 Ford Mower Roadster
2020 GNRS War Paint 32 Ford Roadster Pickup
“War Paint” is a 1932 Ford Roadster Pickup owned by Gary and Deborah DeVine from nearby Glendora, CA. It was originally built by Denny Lesky of Ionia Hot Rod Shop and later finished by Dave Shuten of Galpin Auto Speed Shop in V an Nuys, CA. The DeVines went with a Pontiac V8 for power.
2020 GNRS War Paint 32 Ford Roadster Pickup
2020 GNRS 27 Ford Roadster Twin Fan Special
Dustin and Dawn Smith came down from Spokane, WA, with their “Twin Fan Special,” a 1927-bodied Ford with a 254 CID Ford six-banger with head work and two Stromberg carbs.
2020 GNRS 27 Ford Roadster called Twin Fan Special
Grand National Roadster Show 2020 AMBR trophy
The GNRS America’s Most Beautiful Roadster award was first presented in 1950. The perpetual trophy stands nine feet tall and is inscribed with past winners that include Boyd Coddington, Chip Foose, John Buttera, Magoo, George Barris and many others.