Sept 11th 14'
By Paul Hinkle
West Coast Nationals
Every year on the third weekend of August, hot rodders from 31 states gather at the Alameda County fairgrounds in Pleasanton. This year over 3,800 cars were displayed at the Goodguys 28th West Coast Nationals. The Fred Zimmerman Memorial Hot Rod Week begins the Monday prior to show and provides four days of country drives, shop tours and sightseeing. Many hot rodders take advantage of these special events.
Why is this event so popular with the hot rodders? It’s “The perfect Rod Run” and is known as the “Crown Jewel” of car shows. It attracts hot rodding’s top cars and star builders. The quality of this show also attracts hot rodders from all over the world. Martin Lundquist from Sweden had his hot rod shipped to the east coast and drove it across the country to be part of the show.
The big attraction of this event is the shear volume of cars. On Saturday, rodders start lining up on the streets at 4:00 a.m. so they can get to their favorite spot before it is taken. You are not allowed to leave your hot rod on the fairgrounds overnight so the early morning routine starts again the following day. There are so many cars, it’s impossible to stop and look at all of them especially if you want to spend time at the swap meet. Your day is spent trying to take in as many of the unique hot rods as you can. It was nice to see a lot of new rods out of the Northwest. It seemed that blown engines were the favorite this year; everywhere you looked there was a blower sticking thru a hood. Two unique rods with 12 cylinder motors were on display, one with a Jaguar motor and the other with a Ferrari. No matter what your taste in cars, you were sure to find something of interest. All makes, models, paint colors, graphics, etc. could be seen.
After spending the day walking nonstop, head to the bleachers late in the afternoon for the presentation of the top five rods in the running for ‘America’s Most Beautiful Street Rod’. As the rods were being staged the crowd grew, everyone had their own opinion of which car should be chosen. The top five car owners and builders were introduced and each told a story about their rod. Kevin and Angie Bischoff’s 1936 Dodge was chosen as the lucky winner of the Goodguys 2014 Flowmaster “America’s Most Beautiful Street Rod.”
Two local hot rodders were also award winners; The ‘Way Cool’ award was given to Bob Cook with his 1955 Chevrolet Bel Air and the ‘Flowmaster American Thunder’ award was given to Emy Fagundes with his 1967 Pontiac Firebird.
The Red Caboose really enjoyed the first car show they put on in May, so they will be holding an end of the season fall car show October 25th. They will be donating funds to the Laton Lions Club. Hope to see you there!
The hot rod community would like to send our condolences to the family of Wayne Nobile. Wayne you will be missed.
If your club or organization is putting on a car show or motorsports event, please send your information to firstname.lastname@example.org or call me at (559) 970-2274. I’m always looking for interesting cars, people and events to share. For more information on upcoming events & past events, go to clovisparkinthepark.com.