Tons of lowriders and a mass of people came out to see the best that the Southwest had to offer at the Arizona State Fairgrounds in Phoenix, Arizona. Sponsored by Quaker State, Nitto Tires, Black Magic, Player Wire Wheels, Exide Orbital Batteries, CCE Hydraulics and Limited Alloy Wheels, the show had more than 10,000 in attendance stream through the gate to check out almost 500 entries. This mix included traditional rides, Euros, bombs, bikes and a few low-rods as well. With clear skies and a steady breeze, people were busily clicking away at the fine rides indoors and outside along the blacktop.
There were a few local favorites, like the hot rides from Society Car Club, who had an assortment of Chevy Impalas and bombs on display. The club was there on exhibition only; they weren’t there to compete, but to show their solidarity to the Lowrider Movement as a representation of the Arizona lowriding culture. Much props to Ernesto, “Pee Wee,” Ronnie, Ernie, Mike and Steve for bringing out their firme rides.
We also noticed a large contingent of California cars and clubs like SouthSide, Oldies, Majestics, Uso, Outstanding, Group, Klique and Low Creations just to name a few. These men and women helped make the Phoenix show a hit, with many local enthusiasts gazing in wonder at cars that they’ve only seen in pictures. That’s not to slight the local talent because their cars were just as beautiful, if not more so. Take for example the Impalas from Sophisticated Few, namely Tim McIntyre’s green Oldsmobile, Sabino Gonzalez’ ’63 Impala, “Candy Dream,” and Mike Lazok’s “Otraves” ’64 Impala SS.
As for who got what, let’s go down the list starting with the Euro/Sports Car Sweepstakes category. Sal Campos from High Rollers C.C. and his fancy ’90 Toyota Tercel went home a with a big trophy and $500 check for his efforts. Second Place went to Arturo Gomez with his ’95 Chevy Camaro and Oscar Hernandez of Spirit C.C. came up in Third Place with his ’84 Honda Civic.
At the other end of the car show spectrum are the venerable bombs, the “grand dads” of lowrider car culture. Texas couple Frank and Rosie Requena brought out the fabulous ’48 Chevy Fleetline, “Outer Limits,” which earned 240 points and a grand in the form of a check. Next up we had Joe Phillips with his outstanding ’51 Chevy winning Second Place. Orlando and Lisa Cobos of Imperials C.C. took home Third Place with their sweet ’48 Chevy bomba. While on the subject of bombs, the Bomb Truck Sweepstakes category had some tight rides like Bobby Enz’ super-cool ’50 Chevy trokita from Uniques C.C. taking First Place. Billy Ruiz of Old Memories C.C. took up the Second Place slot with his ’52 Chevy 3100 and Richard Wright of Oldies C.C. occupied Third Place with his fine ’54 Chevy truck.
There were plenty of traditional cars on hand, but the “heavy hitters” had most of the crowd’s attention. Take for example Anthony Fuentes’ ’57 Chevy Bel Air ragtop from SouthSide C.C. Anthony drove out from Los Angeles, California, with his members to share the quality bowtie with the masses. Hailing from Rollerz Only is Romel Bako and his ’63 Impala taking in Second Place, while Lee and Betty Cordova hit Third Place paydirt with their fine ’63 Impala.
The heavy-duty hitters in the Car Sweepstakes category had the judges busy, but at the end of the day it was the C&L Hydraulics entry, a ’79 Chevy Monte Carlo named “Orgullo Mexicano” from Outstanding C.C. out of the San Fernando Valley, which received 297 points and a check for $1,000 from the Go-Lo judges. Next up, it was another Monte Carlo, this time a ’73 from Rollerz Only and owned by Fabian Garcia, claiming the Second Place spot. Coming in a strong Third was “Toto” Diaz from SouthSide C.C. and his immaculate ’58 Impala ragtop.
Ah, but we’re not done yet. For you Truck Sweepstakes aficionados, we have Frank Silva and his ’85 Chevy S-10 Blazer from Outstanding C.C. taking First Place. Armando Gonzalez of Unique C.C. scored 188 points with his ’91 Chevy pickup for Second Place. Third Place went to Ernie Ortega with his sweet ’77 Chevy Silverado. For those of you into the two-wheel deal, the Bike Sweepstakes winners began with Sebastian Paz with his amazing “Superman” ’70 Schwinn entry, while Alfonso Cabral of Outstanding Bike Club took Second and Walter Portillo of Finest Kreations rounded out the category in Third Place. The tricked-out Trike Sweepstakes went down with Timmy Morales’ ’68 Schwinn taking First Place, Jesse Cordova in Second with his ’72 Schwinn and Martin Madrigal rolling in Third with his circa 2000 three-wheeler.
The stage was abuzz with activity as “Lil’ Rob” had the crowd going with his smooth raps and funky beats. Next we had the pleasure of watching the legendary Brenton Wood croon out his classic hits like the “Oogum-Boogum” song. Comedian KJ of Cali Swangin’ had them laughing in the grandstand as he made various observations on the way were grew up, funny stuff KJ!
Well, there you have it, super cars, great weather and a happy day for all lowriders in Phoenix. We can’t wait for next year, but for now the next stop on the 2003 Legends Tour is Tampa, Florida. All aboard!