The Music City was abuzz this weekend for the 11th annual Goodguys Nashville Nationals. More than 2,500 rods, customs and street machines made their way to the Nissan Stadium grounds for three days of show and shine. With fantastic weather and the Nashville skyline off in the distance, the event welcomed spectators from across the globe.
Brian George’s show-stopping Model A took home the 2016 Tanks Inc. Hot Rod of the Year Award at last weekend’s Nashville Nationals. Ben York and his team at Roseville Rod & Custom in Roseville, California, spent close to two years putting together the beautiful Ardun-powered roadster. It’s seen here in action during Friday’s reliability run.
Finalists Bill and Maureen Cromling lead the pack on Friday’s cruise in their Precision Hot Rods-built ’32 five-window. The Ohio-based coupe runs a 3×2-fed Olds. Dan Fuller, another finalist, isn’t far behind in his injected Hemi-powered Deuce roadster.
Among the thousands of cars in attendance, 42 were entered in the Tanks Inc. Hot Rod of the Year competition. It’s a grassroots contest where the cars were driven on a 100+ mile, five-checkpoint reliability run on some of Tennessee’s most historic byways before getting flogged at Music City Raceway in Goodlettsville. Once the dust settled, a panel of Goodguys judges narrowed the field to five finalists. By Sunday afternoon’s award ceremony, Brian George’s Roseville, California-based Model A roadster was crowned the winner.
Back in January, we saw Brian’s ’31 in Pomona at the Grand National Roadster show and were immediately impressed with its blown Ardun, subtle body modifications and impeccable detailing. He made it clear that once he was done showing the car, he planned to drive it hard. Judging by the outcome of the trip to Nashville (and those smoky burnouts shown in the video above), it’s safe to say he’s doing just that.
Once again, another Hilton Hotrods-built “Angry A” was selected as a Hot Rod of the Year finalist. Bob and Chrissy Gratton brought their freshly completed Model A to Nashville from their home in Homosassa, Florida. Tony Lombardi of Ross Racing Engines assembled the hard-charging, 4-71-equipped Buick nailhead. As we’re sure you can surmise, this car was no slouch on the track—or the highway! Lombardi took home the 2014 Hot Rod of the Year Award with his Olds-powered Model A, which we featured in TRJ #67.
It wouldn’t be a full day of cruising without grabbing some burgers and a shake at the local drive-in. This was one of five stops on the 100+ mile Hot Rod of the Year reliability run.
It’s clear that the Hot Rod of the Year competition was stiff this time around. All the participants weren’t afraid to put their cars through their paces and smash some bugs on their windshields as a result. And that’s what it’s all about. For more about this year’s Nashville Nationals, make sure to check out the Goodguys website, Facebook and Instagram.
The hot rodding scene has been rapidly growing in Nashville, Tennessee, in recent years. Here’s a small sampling of the cars in attendance at the 11th annual Nashville Nationals.
The Johnson’s Hot Rod Shop team brought their slippery ’53 Studebaker to the Nashville Nationals from Gadsden, Alabama. Upon closer inspection, you’ll find a wealth of body modifications, including a chopped top, leaned back windshield, custom-made headlights and taillights, among other details. The car was a finalist for the 2016 Custom Rod of the Year Award. (Photo Courtesy of Classic Instruments)