2018 Ultimate Builder Championship
The championship was comprised of 33 award-winning bikes from 6 qualifying rounds with builders coming as far away as California and Texas. Chicago rolled out a white carpet of snow with mind-numbing cold for two of the three days of competition.
Even though it was cold outside, the competition on the inside of the Donald E. Stephens Convention Center in Rosemont, Il was boiling. Over 80 custom sleds were on display at the Chicago round, the largest and most prestigious show in the series.
In order to determine the 2018 champion, a VIP panel of judges were selected for the competition. The six judges included Chris Callen, editor, Cycle Source Magazine; Chris Theis, custom builder and stuntman; Evan Favaro, custom builder; George Stinsman, custom builder; Max Ness of Arlen Ness Motorcycles; and Nick Beaulieu, custom builder and 2017 champion.
FreeStyle Winner at 2018 Ultimate Builder Championship
The Motorcycle Missions entry took 1st place in FreeStyle and the National Championship. The bike features an 1974 Shovel mil in a custom boardtrack frame. The little bike boasts a custom front end, exhaust and fenders.
Motorcycle Missions, founded by Krystal Hess, is a non-profit corporation helping veterans and first responders who deal with PTSD and suicidal ideation find hope and healing through motorcycles. Eight veterans of Motorcycle Missions built the winning motorcycle as part of Motorcycle Missions build mentorship program.
1 – #2025 Motorcycle Missions Veterans named Portfield – 1974 Shovel in a board track frame
2 – # 1700 Chris Moos named DYNOT – 2018 Harley-Davidson Dyna
MOD Harley Winner at 2018 Ultimate Builder Championship
When the dust settled Jesse Srpan from Raw Iron Choppers took the check for Bad Mutha, a 1990 FXR. The bike featured a custom tail section, beefed up motor and Baker tranny.
Performance Machine provided the hand controls and wheels. The bike provides a counter point to the West Coast FXR builds and is very cool.
1- #775 Jesse Srpan of Raw Iron Choppers – 1990 Harley Davidson FXRS “Bad mutha FXR”
2 – #225 Tyler Foster of Sikipipes – 2001 Harley Road King
CUSTOM STREET Winner at 2018 Ultimate Builder Championship
Dale Crawford of Motone won Custom Street with his 2006 Triumph Hardtail Bobber named Mahakala. Designed by Crawford and built by Kyle Shorey of Shadetree Fabrications.
1- #2075 Dale Crawford of Motone – 2006 Triumph Hardtail Bobber
2 – #1575 – PJ Grakauskas – 1975 Can-Am TnT 250
MOD Retro Winner at 2018 Ultimate Builder Championship
BSA is a historic British manufacturer established in 1861, it was at one time the world’s largest motorcycle producer before going defunct in 1972.
Darrell Johnson’s 1965 Custom BSA is a fully polished 650CC motor and features dual carbs and stretch hardtail. The bike was presented with flawless paint, chrome and polished metal. The custom was built by Gasbox.
1 – #1300 Darrell Johnson – 1965 Custom BSA
2 – #1125 Andrew Fredrick named Princess – 1973 Honda CB350G
“The J&P Cycles Ultimate Builder Custom Bike Show is one of the most competitive events in the custom motorcycle building industry, and every year we are amazed at the craftsmanship, time and hard work that goes into the entries in each city,” said Jeff Najar, manager, J&P Cycles Ultimate Builder Custom Bike Show. “We had an amazing championship round in Chicago this year that featured many breathtaking custom motorcycles, and we are very excited to crown Motorcycle Missions Veterans as the official 2018 ‘King of the Builders.’”
Cash + Products Awards
Product Awards at the 2018 Ultimate Builder Championship Awarded in Chicago
Awards reached Paughco, Lucas Oil, icengineworks, Working Man’s Customs, Backbone Built Bikes, Atomic Dice Studio Arts, Leatherworks, Joker Machine, The VIP Alliance, Carolina Ceramic Coatings, TCX Boots, Kirsh Helmets, The VIP Alliance, Suspension Technologies, Harley Davidson, DB FAB LLC., Kens Factory, Klock Werks, K&N Filters, BDL Belt Drive, Arlen Ness, Rinehart Racing, HJC Industries and Vance&Hines.
- Cash Awards at the 2018 Ultimate Builder Championship Awarded in Chicago
Freestyle Category Winner will receive US$10,000, trophy and championship ring. ARV of trophy and ring US$400. Total ARV of cash, ring and trophy.
- Mod Retro Category Winner will receive US$1,500 and a trophy. ARV value of trophy US$50. Total ARV of cash and trophy US$1,550. Runner up will receive a plaque. ARV of plaque US$50.
- Custom Street Category Winner will receive US$1,500 and a trophy. ARV of trophy US $50. Total ARV of cash and trophy US$1,550
- Mod Harley Category Winner will receive US$2,000 and a trophy. ARV of trophy US $100. Total ARV of cash and trophy US$2100
Photos by Manny Pandya, written by Jeff Najar of Bikerpros.com