63nd Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance
Report and photos by Cam Hutchins
This past August I was lucky enough to get to go to the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance in Carmel. Of all the events that take place during “Car Week” on the Carmel/Montery Peninsula in California none are older or more prestigious than the Pebble Beach Concours D Elegance. This year was the 63rd year of the event and although cars came from all over the world, some very important Canadian connections were evident this year.
Starting at the top is the “Best of Show”…Arguably the best award available in the Concours world! This year it was awarded to the 1934 Packard 1108 Twelve Dietrich Convertible Victoria of Joseph and Margie Cassini III from New Jersey. More than 35,000 Packard Twelve’s were produced from 1933 to 1939 but very few had custom coachworks like this Dietrich built car. Adding to the allure is 4 years ago this car was basically a bunch of boxes of bits and over the past 3 years RM Restoration in Ontario finished this masterpiece that was painted a dark green in contrast to many past Best of Show cars that had much flashier paint schemes.
Another Canadian resorted car is the 1929 Duesenberg J Le Baron Phaeton restored by Harry Sherry Restorations in Ontario. The previous owner, John Dart of Ladner had undertaken the restoration himself many years ago but it was finally finished in time to take Dart for a ride very late in his life. The car was sold at RM Auctions in Arizona a few years ago and then resold to it’s present owners in Colorado. Unchanged except for the roof dyed black it was on display for the first time on the Concours circuit at Pebble Beach where it won the Duesenberg class.
JellyBean Autocrafters located in Surrey restored a 1938 BMW 327/8 Cabriolet for owner Steve Norman of Edmonds Washington and it was shown in a very competitive class with a 1939 Bugatti Type 57C getting first followed by a 1939 Bentley 4 1/4 Litre Vanden Plas Tourer, and 1940 Alfa Romeo 6C 2500 SS.
Other Canadian cars present were the 1931 Cadillac 452A Fleetwood Coupe in the American Classic owned by Brent Merrill of Toronto. The car won it’s class followed by another 1930 Cadillac 452 Fleetwood Coupe, and a 1939 Packard 1707 Twelve Formal Sedan.
I love the older classic and vintage cars but get me in front of a 50’s or 60’s Ferrari or the first 15 years of Lamborghini cars to really watch me twitch. A 1967 Ferrari 275 GTB/4 owned by Peter Klutt from Ontario was as beautiful a car as I have ever seen. The long nose, fastback roof and “Kamm” tail were designed by Pininfarina and set a high mark for all following GT cars to come. This car came second in the Postwar Preservation class with first going to a 1965 Porsche 911 Coupe and third was won by a 1971 Lamborghini Miura SV Bertone Coupé, from, Lausanne, Switzerland
One extremely lucky fellow from Ontario entered two amazing cars with his 1969 Lamborghini Islero “S ” being beaten by his own 1976 Lamborghini Countach LP400 that took second place to a 1973 Lamborghini Miura SV Berlinetta, from Geneva, Switzerland with third going to a 1964 Lamborghini 350 GT Touring Coupé, from Germany
The 1969 Lamborghini Islero is the successor to the 400 GT 2+2 and is named after a legendary Bull that killed the world famous matador, Manolete. Designed by Mario Marazzi it was shown at the 1968 Geneve Motor Show and although one of the least known Lamborghinis. It was in Ferruccio Lamborghinis’ opinion, the finest Lamborghini and was what he drove. Only226 models were built and100 of those wier eht emore powerful “S” model.
Three local judges were on hand with Nigel Matthews European Classics Late and the Elegance in Motion Award, John Calson looking after the Lamborghinis and Dr Follows judging the Vanvooren Coachworks class. I ran into many Canadians including the local owner of a Ferrari 330GT and lots more fellow Canadian Carnuts.
Other classes of cars being shown were Lincoln Custom Coachwork V8 and another for V12 and also Lincoln Custom Coachwork Postwar. Some of the cars were mind blowing and the class winner of the Postwar Lincoln Custom Coachwork Class was built by Edsel Ford for his wife and included special custom touches. The second place car was an outstanding orange Lincoln Indianapolis and was commissioned by Edsel Ford to try to bring the Ford motor company into the future and contacted Mario Boano to built this car for the 1955 Turin Motor Show. Edsel drove it for a period of time and then gave it to his friend Errol Flynn…who passed away in Vancouver in 1959..is it possible this amazing car ever made it to Vancouver?
Another class of cars that was astounding to wander amongst was the Indianapolis roadsters featuring cars that raced at Indy from 1953 to 1963.
A selection of 27 1931 to 1939 Alfa Romeo 8C that were going on a 1000 miles tour right after the show.
The importance of these cars cannot be understated since the Scuderia Ferrari Racing team founded by Enzo Ferrari used many Alfa Romeo 8C in competition and the Prancing Horse first appeared on two Alfa Romeo 8C 2300 Spiders at the 1932 Spa 24 hours in Belgium.
The 64th Pebble Beach Concours D’Elegance takes place August 17, 2014 and tickets will be available mid November from the Events website. The event is not inexpensive but is part of the whole week of festivities that happens throughout the preceding week there are many free or inexpensive events that you can enjoy. So start planning now to plan the “vacation of a Carnut’s lifetime”…and take a kid with you!