Latest News

Del Mar Nationals

Written by John Drummond

The seaside village of Del Mar, California erupted with color, chrome, sunshine and excitement last weekend as western states hot rodders and enthusiasts came together for a three-day pacific coast party. It was a celebration of car culture and motorized mayhem with a side of sophistication. It was nuts! The Goodguys 16th Meguiar’s Del Mar Nationals presented by American Racing Wheels just might have been the best one ever.
It is clear our great industry is thriving like never before. Over 2,600 vintage vehicles filled the show field and cruised the midway all weekend. The scene was electric. A record turnout of manufacturers did brisk business. Inside the exhibit buildings, fans got to see the finest collection of cars Goodguys has ever assembled while the who’s who of our hobby mingled and kicked tires. We just can’t remember seeing so many fresh cars, and so many outstanding builds. It was simply over the top!
Weekend highlights were numerous, led by the competition for Goodguys 2016 March Performance Street Rod d’Elegance. A national field of pre ’49 beauties were polished to perfection under the lights in historic Pat O’Brien Hall. When the final ballots were cast, it was Wes & Vivian Rydell’s opulent 1940 Oldsmobile 90 Series sedan named “Agness” which claimed the crown. A collaborative effort between Rad Rides by Troy, Pinkee’s Rod Shop and Rydell’s longtime in house stylist Doug Peterson, Agness blends the best components in contemporary hot rodding with regal, pre-war body lines. It was the second d’Elegance crown for the Rydell’s in the last three years (they also won with their ’35 Chevy Phaeton in 2014) and 3rd Goodguys d’Elegance win overall. We will have a full feature on Agness in the July Goodtimes Gazette.
Performance wise, The Del Mar Nationals was full throttle from the start as hundreds of Goodguys AutoCross racers burned rubber and grabbed the gears. Full fields ran around a tight, twisty course all day Friday and Saturday to determine class winners. Picking up his 3rd win in our first four events this season was Scott Fraser in Bruce Cambern’s 427 Cobra. The kid is red hot right now and legged out a 54.725 for the win. Other winners included Greg Thurmond who won the Shootout/Duel in the Desert transfer spot (55.647), Jane Thurmond in Street Machine (57.586), Wes Drelleshak with his 3rd consecutive truck class win (58.892), Dennis Russell in Hot Rod (1.00) and Jake Rozelle in the K & N Filters All American Sunday division (57.116).
While those activities were playing out, so was a star studded Goodguys Nitro Thunderfest featuring Bill Pitts’ “Magicar,” Tommy “The Watchdog” Allen, Joe Schubeck, Tommy Ivo’s “Barnstormer” and other ground pounders. At the height of the event on Saturday, there must have been over 2,000 fans stacked ten deep around the perimeter of the Thunderfest! While the dragsters were thundering, The C/10 Club came out in full force as the weekend’s featured car club. These guys know how to party! Close to 100 members brought their potent pickups out for sun and fun. Special thanks to club members Logan Thomas & John Oro for coordinating the festivities!
All that plus Saturday’s Good Wood gathering (hosted by the San Diego Woodies) , Charley Hutton’s Builders Choice awards, the Austin Hatcher Foundation AutoCross for Kids program, the Revell Model Car Make & Take, live music and lots more made for a spectacular edition of the Del Mar Nationals.
The weekend more than lived up to its reputation as The Best in the West. See you again next spring where the turf meets the surf!

No comments

Post a Comment