Story by Carlos Rodriguez
Photos by Richard Bartholomew
This is, by the way, my first concours. So bear in mind I am a “Subie” (Subaru) fan being introduced to the world of European cars.
This year marked the 2nd annual Desert Concorso event, which is held in the low desert of California, unlike Concorso Italiano, the “parent event” by the same promoter, that’s held in Monterey. This Palm Springs event isn’t only showcasing Italian cars but additionally cars from all over the world — from America, Japan, and Europe.
The event was held in the Palm Springs stadium which has a breathtaking view of a mountain about 6,000 ft. tall. At first glance… Continue reading →
[Editor’s Note: CBI apologizes in advance for publishing Wallace Wyss’s report on the 2015 Pasadena Art Center Concours so far behind schedule after he submitted it, but hope we can make it up to you by inundating you with an absolute plethora of fantastic photos by Richard Barthlolmew. Kick back, soak them up and enjoy!]
Even using the world “concours” is a bit off base because the Art Center Car Classic occupies its own space in the universe. It makes sense, in a way, that it should be different, in that most of the world’s car designers graduate from that college’s Trans Design program, so this show gives them a chance to see oddball directions taken in car design going back many decades before they were born.
You could argue that there is no consistency to the show, which is crammed in an area about the size of a 50 car parking lot, not like Pebble Beach where there’s acres of land and it is compartmentalized by marque, all the Ferraris are lined up at one end, the Packards at another and so forth. Not at the Art Center Classic, where… Continue reading →
If there is one day a year held dear by French and Italian car fans in Los Angeles, it is the annual French and Italian car day held at Woodley Park in Van Nuys this past weekend, November 1st.
The best thing about this event is that it is free, not for those showing a car but for spectators. But it is still a nominal fee to show a car.
And an additional great thing about the show is… Continue reading →
A nice wrap up of the 2015 Monterey Car Week by Jay Leno, some interesting stuff in here. Love the Cashmere Beige 911 Targa by Singer. That thing should scoot with a 4.0 liter. That along with the Mercedes Benz AMG 300 SEL 6.3 “Red Pig” pictured above would be all we needed in the garage as a pair.
When the committee that runs the PV concours said it was going to relocate this year to a different golf course than Trump International, I worried—in the new location, would I still be able to see the ocean?
That is, after all, the main appeal of staging an event at Palos Verdes, a peninsula that sticks out into the ocean, a peninsula with lots of hills and unbelievable views.
Fortunately the Los Verdes Golf Course,… Continue reading →
We always prefer a preservation over a restoration any day (especially an over restoration), so it’s good to see this 1967 Ferrari 330 GTS that was purchased last year at the Gooding auction in Scottsdale for over $2 million having exactly that done. Scott Grundfor & Company, the Mercedes Benz Gullwing experts, were preparing it for the Pebble Beach show, probably for the Preservation class, but we have not been able to find any photos of it finished or at the show. Did any of our viewers see it there and have any photos of it they would like to share? What’s interesting about this car is that it’s the 5th of only 99 built (auction jargon hype talk) and was originally owned by a prominent cosmetic surgeon named Dr. Samuel L. Scher, a man who pioneered the whole concours car restoration movement. Ironic that this example is not being fully restored, as even the auction blog called it too far gone to be preserved since an engine fire back in 1969 relegated it to sitting in a garage ever since… Continue reading →
Tom McDowell is the creator of the show known as Concorso Italiano. Our intrepid correspondent, Wallace Wyss, caught up with him a week after the show to ask him about the show and about Monterey in general.
Daivd Greenbaum, The Editor Continue reading →
Going to the Rolex Monterey Motorsports Revival is like going to a concours where, periodically a horn sounds, and pristine cars roll out of the pits and onto the track where they are thrashed to the nth degree.
This is a different crowd than the ones who “trailer queen” their car to a concours and faint dead away if a bird poops on their car. They are willing to run neck and neck against the very same cars that competed against their car when their car was new.
There’s increasing support from automakers-this year Ford helped by sponsoring the honoring of the Shelby GT350 Mustang, a car that they spawned when they feared back in’64 the Mustang had too much of the image of a “secretary’s car” so they sent some Mustangs over to Cobra creator Carroll Shelby to “map up” the cars.
But there were many more marques at the Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion than Shelbys… Continue reading →
So, talking Monterey Car week, I start out on Wednesday night at the McCall aviation shindig. This is held at the Monterey airport and there’s old planes (my favorite a polished P51 Mustang with little swastikas on the side for every Germany plane shot down), new Gulfstreams and other bizjets, and food, and beautiful ladies and usually some sort of super exotic car making its entrance on the US. Market. Last year it was Pagani, from Italy, this year it is Koenigsegg from Sweden, which I don’t find as attractive but it is getting great reviews as far as the driving.
The next day Thursday I went to the parade through the streets of Carmel, getting a preview of some of the cars that will be in the Pebble Beach concours. The drivers are anxious their cars not be scuffed up on the trip but the judges wisely credit them with some points for going on the tour.
Most exciting to see tooling down the streets of the tiny hamlet was the 250LM Ferrari with Scuderia Filipinetti written on the side. Also great to see was the more art deco prewar streamlined cars. The crowd lines the streets at the end of the luncheon (for tour participants) and cheers as various cars go by. Before they leave you are free to walk right up and peer inside. I liken this to the start of the Mille Miglia in Italy (I have been to one of the re-creations, not the original which ended in 1957).
On Friday I hopped over to the Porsche gathering, and saw at least one hundred 356 models, which drew me like bees to honey since I am reviving my book Porsche 356 Photo Album. I saw the ex-Steve Tillack Carrera Abarth, bodied in Italy but of course the dealers who own it now are close mouthed about what Tillack bagged that for in Sweden where it belonged to a famous disc jockey. (any clues appreciated…)
(This red Ferrari spyder was a full race car being driven in the tour that stops in Carmel for a couple hours. I think this was the Ferrari barn found parked under a tractor trailer.)
There was also one crummy looking 356 Speedster with a cracked windscreen, a genuine barn find, but the owner said he intended to drive it that way forever, which puzzled me. I can see you showing it “as found” for a couple years but what’s the point of driving it shabby forever? Like wearing a dirty wrinkled suit to the ball, I say. (Editor’s Note: We respect your opinion, Wallace, but shabby is rock & roll cool man!)
The Porsche meet was free by the way, a welcome thing in a Peninsula where entrance fees can be astronomical (as well as hotels, more about that later).
I went to another German meet thinking there would be Porsches but no, that one was all BMWs and Mercedes but they were a happy little group and I could see a wide range in models from a racing 230SL to an Audi TT. I am glad they didn’t try to have Porsches too because there are too many Porsches to fit in there with the other German marques.
“Life is like a box of chocolates. You never know what you’re going to get next.” That was the philosophy of Forest Gump but it’s true of the annual Beverly Hills Father’s Day show. Read all about it in a report by Wallace Wyss on the following page…
Robert Saber from the Motor Press Guild (MPG) was kind enough to send us his pictures from this past Sunday’s San Marino Motor Classic show. Always nice to see a show from several different perspectives. Enjoy them all on the following page, and see what he has to say starting with this Morgan KNP-5…
KNP 5––Possibly the most appealing, at least to me, car in the show. There’s just something so honest about old Morgans, and this one in particular…
The San Mariono Classic is a concours that you could almost describe as a “mini-Pebble Beach” in that there are many of the highest caliber cars—such as prewar Bugattis, Packards, Bentleys and the like, but then they try to reach across the car world to various niches so this year there was a couple hot rods, some muscle cars and even some current cars still in production (more about that later).
The setting is a beautifully landscaped park in a posh suburb of Pasadena called San Marino. You can still look up and see the mountains and there’s plenty of palm trees for shade…
The Greystone Manor concours is one of the most unusual concours on the SoCal schedule because it is as much about the setting as it is what cars are shown. The setting is a big ol’ mansion, sort of British style, brick, with a slate roof, like something you would expect Lord Throckbottom to live in out in Surrey. But this house was built by the Doheny family, one of the first “business fortune” families in Los Angeles, owing to the fact that their oil firm struck paydirt back in the 1920’s. The house sits precariously perched in the Hollywood Hills only a stone’s throw from where Sunset Strip turns to go through Beverly Hills. But going to the concours is bit of a chore compared to others because, due to a lack of parking space for spectator’s cars, you have to buy tickets in advance and then on the day of the show go to a parking garage on Sunset Strip and take their shuttle bus to the event. Oh, and it cost $145 entrance fee per person. That being said it is a fun even for the ladies because various sundry purses and jewelry are for sale and for the men, model cars, and racing posters and the latest books. The mansion, which was donated to the city of Beverly Hills, is being restored room by room and these booth rentals help restore it. I was very impressed with some of the items being sold such as custom jewelry by Scott Gauthier and custom leather jackets with your car ‘s brand on it (the Vincent jacket was a favorite!). And THE CARS! Oh, yes, sorry, I forgot the cars…
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These two shows, one on British cars, the others on French & Italian cars, are I should venture to say, the lifeblood of the foreign car collecting community in Los Angeles. Why? Because they don’t demand restored cars. In fact, why I like going to these shows is that there are some cars living on the edge, as they say, one step away from the scrapyard except that an owner somewhere loves them. This year at the April 16th Queen’s English meet I would say there were well over 100 cars, but each year that I go to this event in a nice shaded public park near the meeting of the 124 and 101 freeways, the”mix” of cars is different.
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