Weekend Rewind! Goodguys 1st Meguiar’s SoCal Nationals presented by BASF

The calendar might have flipped over to October this weekend, but Goodguys kept the summertime vibes alive with three days of beachside cruisin’ at the 1st Meguiar’s SoCal Nationals presented by BASF! That’s right, the fantastic atmosphere and location of the Del Mar Fairgrounds near San Diego is so appealing that we decided a second dose of SoCal fun was in order for the 2022 season. Area rodders and enthusiasts agreed and turned out in droves for a weekend cool cars and good times!

The car culture runs deep in this region, and so many aspects of it were represented throughout the scenic fairgrounds. We had early-style hot rods, smooth customs, colorful lowriders, mighty muscle cars, agile AutoCross racers, way-cool woodies, trick trucks, sleek sports cars, and more cruisin’ along the venue’s palm-tree-lined lanes all weekend long. There was even an indoor display of Dubs and lowrider mini trucks. If you enjoy variety, Del Mar definitely had it!

Speaking of variety, participants seeking awards had a wide range of Saturday Specialty Parking Areas they could seek out for one of the dozens of awards bestowed at the event. The Builder’s Choice area was one of the most hotly contested, with scores of fine rides vying for a coveted Builder’s Choice Top 10 selection. The Goodguys team had its work cut out for it to narrow down the list of candidates, but ultimately came up with a well-rounded lineup.

Other notable award winners for the weekend included a finalist for Snap-on Muscle Car of the Year – Jim Sofios’ 1970 SS Chevelle – plus finalists for the two Chevrolet Performance Builder of the Year awards – SIC Chops’ ’56 Chevy Pickup earning the GM Iron finalist spot, and a ’36 Ford Roadster sporting LS6 power picking up the GM Retro Iron for Barry’s Speed Shop. Our media team also selected a Fuel Curve Pick and Goodguys Feature Pick – Jason Fonte’s ’59 Apache that was resurrected from the 2018 Northern California Camp Fire that burned more than 150,000 acres including the town of Paradise (where the truck was located) was chosen for the Fuel Curve pick, and David Tumino’s owner-built ’60 Ford crew cab picked up the Goodguys Feature Pick.

A relocated and reconfigured track made for some exciting competition in the Goodguys CPP AutoCross Series, with a host of West Coast heavyweights taking the track for some high-rpm action. In the Speedtech Performance PRO-X class Keith Corrigan won the class with the quickest time in his ’55 T-Bird, but it was Wed Drelleshak driving a ’65 Corvette earning the AutoMeter Pacific Coast Shootout victory. In the remaining classes it was all double-up victories with Eric Sheeley dominating the Summit Racing PRO class in a ’72 Corvette, Bill Graves, Sr. muscling his ’66 Corvette to wins in the Forgeline Street Machine class, Eric Sheeley again claiming double wins in the LMC Truck class driving a ’62 Ranchero, Scott Fraser continuing his winning ways in the Gearstar Sports Car class behind the wheel of his ’89 Corvette, and Keenan Smith winning the FiTech Challenger class in his ’65 Mustang. During the Tremec All American Sunday action it was a split-decision with Jonathan Pickford winning the class in his 2020 Tesla, but Brandon Thurman edging him out in the shootout in a 2022 Tesla.

What else could we possibly add to make a car-crazy weekend like this even better? How about regular Goodguys features like a trio of Nitro Thunderfest exhibitions featuring nostalgia drag racing machines, or maybe some great live music entertainment, a swap meet full of deals, activities for the kids, and dozens of vendors showcasing great products, helpful services, and other cool items.

There’s nothing quite like experiencing a cool collection of vintage cars and trucks in a scenic beachside venue. We’re reminded of that every time we return to SoCal for some Goodguys Good Times at the Del Mar Fairgrounds. It’s such a picture-perfect setting that we feel it’s worth visiting twice during the season, and we’re thankful for all of you who agree and came out to join us this weekend.

Photos by Steven Bunker, Todd Ryden & Terry Lysak

Editor, Goodguys Gazette

Damon Lee began snapping photos at car shows when he was 10, tagging along with his father to events throughout the Midwest. He has combined his passion for cars and knack for writing and imagery into a 20-year career in the automotive aftermarket, writing for titles like Super Chevy and Rod & Custom and, more recently, working for respected industry leaders Speedway Motors and Goodguys Rod & Custom Association.