What Am I Doing at the LA Roadsters Show?
I've been to the Pomona Fairplex for plenty of car events throughout the years: heads-up drag racing (NIRA/IDRC/NHRA), Import Showoff, Hot Import Nights, AutoCon...if there were imports involved then I was there. The only other time I went for a non-import event was for the the semi-regular Pomona Swap Meet (although it does cater to a smaller group of pre-'85 imports). While my interests lay heavily skewed to modified Japanese cars, my travels and interest in cars has taken me to places like Vegas for MFest or Michigan for Lane Automotive's Show and Cruise-In. I recently checked off another n00b event this past weekend when I hit the LA Roadsters Show & Swap. At the recommendation of our own Kristin Cline, the LA Roadsters show would be the perfect way to break me in to the world of vintage hot rods, particularly the roadster variety. Did you know that a roadster is defined as being a two-seater automobile that has no windshield, side mirrors or top? I thought I had some small idea before, but was quickly schooled by Kristin once we started making our rounds through the Fairplex. Being that I know next to nothing about these vintage roadsters, I simply let my eyes take me to whatever looked good. This just happens to be my favorite car of the show. Troy and Michelle Hyde are associate members of the LA Roadsters, and brought this '32 Ford Roadster all the way from Phoenix for the weekend. I liked the louvered accents and color combination, and if I had to build a roadster of my own, this is the look I'd go for most. Although I'd probably do some engine work along these lines (since I couldn't tell what kind of engine setup was on the Hyde's roadster)... Or more likely to do a more modern day LS3 swap, though it's a much tighter squeeze. The LA Roadsters swap meet section is pretty standard fare - plenty of random finds and probably more junk than there are gems, but it's still worth a look. You never know what you'll find... ...or who you might run into. Here's Gene Winfield (with Kristin), a master of customization who's known particularly for his chopping, metal work and fade paint skills. A real cool dude who built this Ford Pacifica replica of another car that's now long gone. You can see some more of Gene's work in our Custom Styling of the '60s: HERE. Stumbled on a small corral of landspeed racers, including this crazy looking bike. But wouldn't you believe it: something I do know - the ultra-rare Toyota 2000GT, Japan's first supercar. Not sure why it was here but I wasn't complaining! While the cars are still ultimately foreign to me, the LA Roadsters show is a nice breath of fresh air from my normal JDM paced life. I can walk in without any preconceived notions and admire all the hard work that these owners have put into their projects because, at the end of the day, their dreams of building that perfect car is no different than mine. It's just a much different platform and canvas as far as I'm concerned.