Goolsby Customs Next Generation award, Goolsby Customs Next Generation award, Ben Frensko 1963 Ford F100

Reviewing the Goolsby Customs Next Generation Award Winners from the Second Half of 2021

If what we saw from the Goolsby Customs Next Generation award process during this past year has any indication of the overall health of hot rodding, there’s no need to worry – we’re in good hands. Of course, not all teens and 20-somethings are looking in fields for old cars and trucks, scrounging swap meets, or spending nights in their garage, but those who are doing that are doing it well!

Goolsby Customs Next Generation award, logan adkinsThe Next Generation award presented by Goolsby Customs may have received a new name for 2021 and an updated selection process over the past few years, but Goodguys has been recognizing young rodders for decades. Many of them are still Goodguys members who we see regularly, have continued building new rides over the years, and have introduced kids of their own to this hot-rodding world.

Jonathan Goolsby supports the Next Generation program 100-percent as he stays in contact via social media with these young rodders to offer advice and tips as they continue to refine their rides or start building new ones. One of the biggest differences between hot rodding in the 1950s, ’60s, or ’70s to today is the support system. Back then, groups of friends would help each other in the garage, whereas now a young hot rodder may only have one or two buddies (and hopefully a parent or older relative) to lend a helping hand.Goolsby Customs Next Generation award, Ben Frensko 1963 Ford F100

If you want to see this hobby carry on, show some support, offer words of encouragement, and answer questions or give advice when you see a 20-something-year-old park next to you at a Goodguys event or your local cruise in. Their “classic” may be different than yours, but the mindset is still the same.

We recapped the first half of the 2021 Next Generation finalists back in June and we’re bringing you the second half of the 2019-2021 finalists, plus the National Champion of the 2021 Goolsby Customs Next Generation title, who was invited to the big display at the Goodguys 24th Speedway Motors Southwest Nationals presented by Barrett-Jackson in November.

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A lifelong car kid, Steven grew up around drag strips – his name may sound familiar because his grandfather is Bob Bunker, a Pro Mod pioneer who piloted the “Folsom Flash” ’55 Chevy from the ’70s through the ’90s. Steven’s father, Bob Bunker Jr., heads up Bunker Motorsports and is a regular in the West Coast racing scene, building chassis and race cars for more than 30 years. With genetics like that, it’s no wonder Steven has a passion for both cars and motorsports. In addition to helping his father and honing his fabrication skills at Bunker Motorsports, Steven began shooting photos at the drag strip and capturing the action with his Canon camera. He is now artfully crafting stories around the awesome machines at the shows, as well as the men and women behind them. When he's is not on the road covering events, he spends his downtime out on the water fishing, building his 1962 Chevy Nova, or cruising his 1987 GMC Suburban.