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Search for Young Builders Takes SEMA to Atlanta

By SEMA Editors

Young Guns
Keenen LaCour won the first SEMA Young Guns Regional title at TX2K in Houston with his ’03 Mitsubishi Evo8.
Young Guns
Steven Nadaskai earned a trip to the 2019 SEMA Show by winning the Young Guns title at the Formula Drift event in Long Beach, California.

SEMA’s search for young vehicle builders moves on to Atlanta, as the SEMA Young Guns Regional Program joins Formula DRIFT at Road Atlanta, May 11.

The stop marks the third in a nine-city tour where top young vehicle builders will win all-expenses-paid trips for two to the 2019 SEMA Show, including transportation of the winner’s vehicle, a designated feature vehicle spot at the Show and entry into the SEMA Battle of the Builders competition.

The SEMA Battle of the Builders competition is the automotive industry’s premier vehicle competition, with participants featured at the SEMA Show, in magazines and on television. Open exclusively to builders with vehicles on display at the SEMA Show, the competition expanded in 2017 to provide exposure for a limited number of rising young builders. This year’s program includes partnerships with nine venues, with one winner from each venue awarded a Golden Ticket into the competition.

“The level of craftsmanship and amount of talent that we are seeing from the young builders is amazing,” said Ira Gabriel, SEMA vice president of marketing, PR and communications. “We’re encouraged and optimistic that this is going to be the best group of Young Guns competitors yet.”

Keenen LaCour won the first competition at TX2K with his ’03 Mitsubishi Evo8, and Steven Nadaskai won the competition at Formula DRIFT with his ’11 Volkswagen GTI. Both builders will compete in SEMA Battle of the Builders at the SEMA Show in Las Vegas, November 5–8.

A third builder will be selected at Formula DRIFT’s event in Atlanta on May 11. Vehicles from 10 young builders will be on display at the Formula DRIFT competition as they compete for a chance to advance to the SEMA Battle of the Builders competition in Las Vegas.

“Supporting and energizing young car enthusiasts is an ongoing initiative and priority,” said Jim Liaw, Formula DRIFT president. “We know there is a lot of great talent in the Atlanta area and can’t wait to see what we get.”

Participants for the Atlanta competition will be selected from qualified applicants who enter at For additional details, visit the website or contact