The 73rd annual event features hundreds of show cars competing for some of the industry’s most prestigious accolades and includes exhibits celebrating 50 years of trendsetting trucks, the best of custom car culture and more
Pomona, Calif. (Dec. 20, 2022) – The O’Reilly Auto Parts Grand National Roadster Show presented by Meguiar’s, the longest-running indoor car show in the world, returns to the Fairplex in Pomona, California, for its 73rd season on Feb. 3-5, 2023. Dozens of the country’s top custom cars will make their debuts during the three-day event, which is set to feature more than 1,000 of the best hot rods, customs, lowriders, muscle cars, trucks and motorcycles from across the nation. The highly coveted and competitive “America’s Most Beautiful Roadster (AMBR)” and “Al Slonaker Memorial” awards return for 2023, along with several featured attractions.
Since its debut in 1950, the AMBR Award has been recognized as one of the custom car world’s most prestigious awards. It is presented annually to a vehicle with exceptional originality, style, design, craftsmanship, engineering and functionality and is open to all 1937-and-older U.S.-production-based roadsters, roadster pickups, Phaetons and touring cars. The winner will receive a $12,500 prize, their name on the nine-foot-tall perpetual trophy provided by award sponsor ARP Fasteners, and a smaller version of the trophy to take home. Last year, Tim Devlin, builder of Jeff Breault’s 1934 Chevy Roadster, joined a list of legendary builders who have taken home the AMBR honors, including George Barris, Boyd Coddington, Darryl Hollenbeck, Troy Ladd and Chip Foose.
Vehicles competing for the “Al Slonaker Memorial Award” will also be displayed at the event and judged by a panel of industry experts comprised of builders, media members and automotive designers. Created in 1974 by GNRS founder Al Slonaker, the award recognizes the best non-roadster vehicle at the show. The winner will also receive their name on a custom billet perpetual trophy and be presented with a $12,500 prize and a smaller take-home trophy. Past winners include Eric Clapton for his 1932 Ford Victoria built by Roy Brizio, James Hetfield for his 1948 Jaguar Mark IV built with Rick Dore, Craig Moyes for his 1950 Chevy Phantom fleetside pickup built by Dave Kindig, and Pat Gauntt for his 1932 Ford Coupe built by Troy Ladd.
“We’re excited and honored to host the first big event of 2023 where renowned car builders will showcase their custom creations to the world,” said John Buck, producer of the Grand National Roadster Show. “The level of craftsmanship displayed here at GNRS continues to set the standard for car shows, and the event’s rich history helps preserve that passion for generations to come.”
Capitalizing on the wildly popular custom truck trend, this year’s event also features over 100 iconic, hand-picked, historic and unique trucks, from full-size to mini-trucks and vans in its dedicated feature building exhibit “Keep on Truckin’: 50 Years of Classic Haulers from 1948-1998” presented by LMC Truck and Classic Truck Performance Magazine. Some of the most recognizable builds include “Copperhead,” a 1967 Chevy C/10 built by Stacey David on the television show “Trucks,” Chip Foose’s 1956 Ford F-100 built on the show “Overhaulin’,” and trucks built by famed hot-rod builders such as Boyd Coddington, “Lil” John Buttera, “Fat Jack” Robinson, Art Chrisman, Tim Strange and more.
The vintage-themed Suede Palace, for more traditional hot rods, customs and drag cars from the ‘40s, ‘50s and ‘60s, is also a crowd favorite, with period music, costumes and more. A large selection of artfully designed lowriders will be on display, highlighting the best of custom car culture with local flair and classic style. There will also be over 15 incredibly crafted custom flat-bottom, wood-deck, drag and K-boats with supercharged engines and intricate paint jobs.
Outside, the 17th Annual Grand Daddy Drive-In will welcome hundreds of hot rods, muscle cars, classics, customs and trucks each day, all of which will be eligible for special awards and magazine recognitions. Also on site will be industry-leading builds like the Ringbrothers’ “ENYO” and Kevin Hart’s “Dark Knight,” along with some of the most respected custom car builders in the industry, such as Roy Brizio, Bobby Alloway, Chip Foose, Troy Ladd, Troy Trepanier, Steve Strope and more.
Talented pinstripers from around the world will also showcase their skills as they create automotive art that will be auctioned off each day, with 100% of the proceeds benefitting the Haynes Family of Programs. From cell phones and laptops to skateboards and bowling pins, event attendees are encouraged to bring any items they would like the artists to pinstripe for a small donation to the charity.
There will also be dozens of food and retail vendors, live entertainment, kid’s games and other family-friendly activities.
The Grand National Roadster Show runs from 12 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 3, 2023; 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 4, 2023; and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Sunday, Feb. 5, 2023. Daily general admission is $30 for ages 13+, $10 for children ages 6-12 and free for children under 6. Tickets are available online at www.rodshows.com and at all participating O’Reilly Auto Parts stores.
About Rod Shows
Based in the automotive cultural hub of Southern California, Rod Shows produces the West Coast’s premier indoor hot rod and custom shows, including the Grand National Roadster Show and the Sacramento Autorama. Its professional show management team sets the highest standards for top-quality competition and displays with every show and personally visits the country’s top automotive coachbuilders and events throughout the year, ensuring the best of the best participate in its events. For more information, visit www.rodshows.com.