Top 10 Contenders and Winner of the America’s Most Beautiful Roadster Award at the 2020 Grand National Roadster Show
January 31, 2020 | Brian Hatano
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.
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
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.
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.