National Street Rod Association Nationals Louisville 2018

August, 2018

2018 National Street Rod Association Nationals Louisville

“More horsepower than the Spring Meet at Churchill Downs” is the perfect way to describe the National Street Rod (NSRA) Nationals at the Kentucky Expo Center in Louisville. This was the 49th year of the Nationals, and as a testament to the popularity of their summer event, the NSRA has already committed to extend their contract to 2025. So, the cars will keep on rolling into Louisville for years to come, especially next year as the show celebrates its golden anniversary. This year’s show was certainly huge, with 10,190 vehicles registered, and there is already talk that 2019 will break the all-time record of over 13,000, which was established during the 25th anniversary. Those attendees next year will also be eligible for not just one give-a-way car, but two vehicles, one a hot rod and a second, a muscle car. Besides thousands of vehicles, other features of this four-day event were:

    • Builders Showcase,
    • Drawing for the 2018 Giveaway Car,
    • Vintage Auto Parts Swap Meet,
    • Indoor Auto Manufacturers Show,
    • Free Seminars,
    • StreetKhana (Autocross – NSRA Style)

Here’s just some of what we saw.

This is roughly 1/2 of the outdoor show field at the NSRA Nationals.  It’s big!
With a show this large the only way to see it all is either cruisin’ the field in your hot rod or by other motorized means. This is where some guys get really creative!


Builders’ Showcase

The Builders’ Showcase has been one of the highlights of the NSRA Nationals in Louisville for the past 12 years. This year, the Showcase featured more than 30 vehicles that demonstrate the builders’ cutting edge creativity and attention to style and detail. Here are some of the Top Builds.

’66 Dodge Super Charger
Builder: Garret’s Rod Shop
Owner: John McConnell

’62 Corvette
Builder: B Rod or Custom
Owner: Joe Spano

’41 Willys
Builder: Hot Rod Specialties
Owner: Jon Brissman

’47 Cadillac
Builder: Gas Axe Garage
Owner: Kevin Anderson

Major Award Winners

Builder of the Year Award1936 Ford RoadsterBoesch Auto Body, Builder
Pros’ Pick of the Year1941 WillysChris and Mary Merrifield, Owner
Giveaway Car1932 Ford VictoriaCharlie Senn, Owner


2018 NSRA Builder of the Year Award

Builders in the Showcase voted for the Top Build of the competition. The only stipulation was that they couldn’t vote for themselves! The winner of this year’s Builder of the Year award was Boesch Auto Body for a 1936 Ford Roadster.


2018 NSRA Pros’ Pick of the Year

From 10 NSRA events, 57 cars were awarded the honor of being a “Pros’ Pick.” From these 57, one from each event became a finalist, and then from the 10 finalists a winner was chosen. The 2018 Pros’ Pick of the Year was awarded to Chris and Mary Merrifield for their 1941 Willys, dubbed Swoopster.


2018 Giveaway Car

This year’s giveaway car, a 1932 Ford Victoria, was built by Waycool Customs. The winner of this state-of-the-art “Vicky” was Charlie Senn of Louisville, KY.


Surf Seeker — Ron Berry’s Custom VW Bus

Ron Berry was at the NSRA Nationals in Louisville this weekend displaying his wildly popular creation. Listen to this designer/fabricator/visionary talk about “Surf Seeker.” This VW Bus was built from scratch, containing virtually no original components from the iconic van of the ‘60s. Also it is hard to believe but it is not an optical illusion!



Other Eyecatching Cars