8 great Fords from the inaugural Grand National Truck Show

Brandan Gillogly

The first-ever Grand National Truck Show kicked off festivities at the Pomona Fairplex in California with hundreds of trucks, vans, and SUVs of every make and model. In addition to vans and SUVs, the show welcomed any vehicle that was built after 1900 and had a bed. That included ’60s utilities like El Caminos and Rancheros but also ’30s roadster pickups. While this was a first-year show that brought out a fraction of the cars that regularly show up to the Grand National Roadster Show, held at the same venue, there were still more than 400 attendees.

Despite the aforementioned restrictions on body styles, the huge range of years allowed for a wide variety of vehicles on display. Here are just some of our favorite Fords in attendance.

For the first time ever, 18 invitees competed for the title of America’s Most Beautiful Truck. The build dates of the competitors ranged from the 1930s to the 2000s, and the styles of the vehicles were just as varied. When the judging was complete, the winner was Greg and Penni Tidwell’s 1940 Ford, built by South City Hot Rods in Hayward, California.

The truck’s subtle modifications and flawless attention to detail made it tough to beat. It rides on a Scott’s Hot Rods chassis and is powered by a triple-carbed 383 Chevy small-block.

Several of the 17 other competitors were also Blue Oval–made, including a pair of unibody F100s, a 1961 owned by Kent Matranga, and a 1962 owned by Mark and Diane Bell. The deep red 1961 is powered by a Ford Coyote V-8, while the orange 1962 uses LS3 power.

There were also a pair of 1932 Ford roadster pickups among the 18 competitors. Gary and Deborah DeVine’s “War Paint” was built by Denny Lesky at Ionia Hot Rod Shop and Dave Shuten at Galpin Speed Shop.

John Sutherland’s 1932 Ford roadster pickup is powered by a Ford Coyote V-8 fed by a pair of Nelson Racing Engines mirror-image turbos that are tucked away inside the headlight housings.

Brent Hunsaker’s “Stranger” is one of the most well-known minitrucks in the country. The interior, inspired by that of an Edsel, is a great way to make the controversial grille design into a beautiful, functional center stack.

Darin Gilchriese brought this ’56 F-100, which wore deep green paint to show off the model’s instantly recognizable curves.

The final Ford entry was Jerry Logan’s 1934 Ford. It deservedly won Best Engine for its twin-supercharged Y-block Ford V-8 that featured six throttle butterflies, three per side.

This was just a taste of the Fords in attendance, we’ll share more in galleries that are still to come.




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    You’ll get no argument from me that a ’40 Ford pick-up is a beautiful truck. I’ve long lusted after one. Never had the right opportunity at the right time (i.e. – when I had some money 😁), but I have a vision in my head of what I’d do to get the “look” I’d want, and most purists would shun me if they knew.

    I found a 1936 Ford pickup in a barn with two motorcycles and wooden boxes of car parts on top of it.
    Now it has a tube frame, full roll cage, 605 inch big block Ford V-8, and 33×16-15 tires. It looks stock (except the tires). It’s street legal and can do zero to 60 in one second on the track.
    Purists be damned!

    It’s a great shame that Ford builders can build such a gorgeous pick-up such as this and then drop a Chev engine in and ruin the whole build. It’s as though Ford owners are ashamed to show a build with a Ford engine. The other trucks with Ford engines look great.

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