Progressive IMS Outdoors Reveals the First Round of J&P Cycles Ultimate Builder Custom Bike Show Winners


As the Progressive International Motorcycle Shows roll across the country this summer and fall, so too does the J & P Cycles Ultimate Builder Custom Bike Show. The custom competition is actually in its 11th year now, but the partnership with IMS Outdoors this year means the show will expand to a nationwide, multi-venue, open-air competition, holding regional bike shows in nine cities as part of the IMS 2021 tour. The UBCBS, as it’s often called, has a rich history as the nation’s largest custom bike builder competition, featuring hundreds of motorcycles and offering the chance to win tens of thousands in cash and prizes across the 2021 IMS tour this year. The opening round of the “bike build-off” took place at Sonoma Raceway, and the bikes taking top prizes were stunning.

“We designed the competition to spotlight professional and amateur builders alike, attracting world-class builders at each stop along the tour that come to showcase their rolling works of art. Not only do the participates receive well-deserved recognition, but the custom motorcycles on display provide event attendees the opportunity to engage with some of the finest customs across the US,” remarked Bob Kay, director of UBCBS.

Each stop along the tour holds a competition at the event comprised of three classes- Custom Street, Custom Classic, and Freestyle, as well as a People’s Choice Award. Winners from each category are then entered into the championship round to be held in Atlanta, competing for the grand prize and renowned title, King of Builders.

“Congratulations to the winners in Sonoma. This year’s bunch is truly a remarkable group of builders, with each bike telling a unique story. We are still accepting applications for the upcoming eight cities and welcome all creatives and builders to be a part of the fun,” continued Kay.

Here’s the class winners from the IMS Sonoma round:



  • Hugo Eccles with Untitled Motorcycles won with a 1975 Moto Guzzi Supernaturale. The custom is a minimalist café racer that features an 844cc engine and a 23% lighter build than its original 1975 donor. The hand-formed aluminum gas tank is a contemporary reinterpretation of the classic LeMans and encloses a state-of-the-art electrical system, and much more.


  • Dave Kelly secured runner-up with a custom-built 1939 Flathead.



  • Daniel Stern and painter Art Himsl won with a 2004 Harley-Davidson Softail/sidecar that features handmade fenders and body panels. The sidecar hosted exotic wood flooring, full aluminum louvered polished belly pans, and custom luggage behind the seat. The custom also features handmade taillights and trim work, hidden handlebar controls, a bronze powder-coated engine, among many other features.


  • Phil Susoev took runner-up with a 2003 Harley-Davidson Softail Standard, custom-built by Ricky Bray at RKB Kustom Speed.



  • Gino and Denise Ilacqua with Jezabel Customs and painter Shane Leasure won with a 1976 Custom Chopper. The motorcycle features throwback rocker boxes, a custom oil tank, twist bar, plus bent metal pieces using camper propane tanks and a vise to shape fabricated pieces, and so much more.

Runners Up

  • Dave Kelly secured co-runner up with a custom-built Pan Shovel.
  • Andrew Harris secured co-runner up with a 2018 Sur Ron Lightbee. The all-electric on- and off-road supermoto features regenerative braking, and a complete lighting system including ambient RGB underglow.



  • Joe Stoesser nailed the People’s Choice award with a 1994 Harley-Davidson FXR. The custom, known as The Team Dream, is a perfect example of the last of the FXR. The bike was built in a one car garage in San Francisco, features a nickel-plated frame, one-off swing arm, candy paint, and a few hundred hours of hand engravings.

To learn more about the competition and to register as a participant, visit here.

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