The Goodguys Rod & Custom Association wraps up its 2014 season this weekend when the 17th annual Southwest Nationals rolls into WestWorld in Scottsdale, Arizona.
More than 3,000 hot rods, customs, muscle cars and classics are expected to take part in the sweeping showcase of automotive artistry scheduled Friday through Sunday. The Scottsdale show will be the final event this year in Goodguys’ national agenda of 19 hot-rod and custom car shows, which started in March.
New this year at WestWorld will be the selection of Goodguys’ Truck of the Year-Late (Model) award for custom trucks produced between 1955 and 1972. The seven finalists from around the country will be lined up for judging, with the winner announced Saturday at 1 p.m.
“Normally, we have the Truck of the Year selected already, but we decided to invite all seven finalists and do the award right there at Scottsdale,” said Goodguys spokesman John Drummond.
The late-model Truck of the Year will join the top 10 other Cars of the Year that have been awarded so far by Goodguys and its sponsors during 2014. The national winners will all be present for inspection by the public in the gleaming Champions Arena at Westworld.
One more annual winner will be awarded during the Southwest Nationals: The champion of the Goodguys AutoCross Finals Shootout. The Shootout is a popular competition in which 32 finalists will compete on a tight, complex autocross track for the fastest times in bracketed elimination racing.
“The final Shootout autocross race is a 32-car field from all over the country to determine one overall winner, who becomes the Autocrosser of the Year,” Drummond said. “It’s a real cutthroat tournament.”
The Autocross Shootout is a crowd-pleasing event because spectators get to see the high-performance custom cars in roaring, tire-shrieking action, Drummond added.
Along with the thousands of special vehicles filling the polo grounds at WestWorld will be hundreds of vendor exhibits, a massive swap meet and cars-for-sale corral, a model car show, free games and activities for kids, and entertainment.
The weekend gets started Thursday with the traditional Hot Rod Cruise organized by the event’s host club, the Over the Hill Gang Phoenix Chapter. After visiting seven locations in the Phoenix area, including shops and collections, the final stop is at Squeeg’s Kustoms in Chandler for a night of live music, food, drinks and lots of hot rods. The party gets under way at 5 p.m.
For more information about the Southwest Nationals and the Hot Rod Cruise, see www.good-guys.com.