MONTEREY MADNESS: IT’S A WRAP!

CGC’s Jim Palam wraps up Monterey Car Week 2019 with a bevy of weird & wonderful desserts, perfect for savoring the hobby’s preeminent seven-day smorgasbord.

MONTEREY MADNESS: IT’S A WRAP!If you’re on a diet, you may want to skip this story. By now, car guys around the globe have consumed a veritable smorgasbord of news stories, video posts and water cooler tales about Monterey Car Week 2019. It’s appropriate that this ballyhooed extravaganza is at its purest construction a seven-day experience; this aligns nicely with a formal, seven-course meal. It’s MONTEREY MADNESS: IT’S A WRAP!

So, we’ve enjoyed our appetizers – the L’Aperitif, Hors D’oeuvres and L’Entree of private gatherings, automobilia exhibits, media and tech huddles and car rallies – and feasted on our main course of elaborate events like Pebble Beach and The Quail while adding a scrumptious side like The McCall Motorworks Revival to our plate. We cleansed our palate with the speedy and refreshing Historics at Weathertech Raceway Laguna Seca – and conspicuously consumed our car auctions cheese boards. Ahh, but we have yet to indulge in our last course – some Monterey Car Week dessert. So loosen your belts; it’s time to dig in for a little something extra.

It’s always a special treat to visit the Jaguar paddock garage, top, at Laguna Seca. You’re greeted with big smiles, complimentary sunscreen and water and of course, close-up inspections of race-engineered Jaguars – like this model-flanked I‑PACE SV racecar. It’s one of twenty SVs that compete in the Jaguar I‑PACE eTROPHY Championship races.

This stalwart ’63 Ferrari 250 GTO was one of the “Greatest Racing Ferraris of All Time” commanding an upper lawn Ferrari exhibition at the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance. The “Car Guy’s Dream Come True” display was part of Scuderia Ferrari’s 90th Anniversary of celebration.

MONTEREY MADNESS: IT’S A WRAP!Back in 1966 you could rent a 306 horsepower Shelby GT350-H Mustang for $17 a day and 17 cents a mile. The Hertz “Rent-a-Racer” Program was a big success – until vehicle repair expenses started adding up. This concours condition example discovered at The Quail has a Hagerty valuation of $232,000.

MONTEREY MADNESS: IT’S A WRAP!Another stunning Ferrari included in the Scuderia Ferrari 90 exhibition at Pebble was this gorgeous ‘58 250 TR Testa Rossa. Its radical Scaglietti body design featured pontoon fenders that funneled cooling air to the brake drums, and a protruding nose similar to that of a Formula 1 car. While we often associate the color red (Rosso Corsa) with Ferraris, yellow is a color that is in the company’s DNA and is often referred to as Ferrari’s Second Soul.

Notice the chiseled lines, the ready-for-service stance, the look of proud British tradition. No, not the vintage ‘33 MG P-type Midget in Pacific Grove, but its proud owner – natty in his vintage RAF uniform. Monterey Car Week is as much about the interesting people you meet as it is about the unique and desirable motorcars.

MONTEREY MADNESS: IT’S A WRAP!A fully illuminated matrix grille is just one of the delicious details incorporated into the EXP 100 GT, Bentley’s futuristic Concept Car. This all-electric eye-popper was one of the many delights Bentley brought to Monterey to help celebrate its 100th birthday. Our wait for a production EXP might be a lengthy one, as this 19-foot long, 7.9-foot wide giant won’t hit a showroom floor until “possibly” 2035!

MONTEREY MADNESS: IT’S A WRAP!When Batman ordered his jet-engined ‘88 Batmobile he checked off an arsenal of crime-fighting accessories – including two forward-mounted Browning M1919 .30 caliber machine guns and dual-missile launchers, grappling hook launchers plus rear oil-slick dispensers and smoke emitters. Fortunately, none of these lethal devices were employed at The Quail where this winged-monster was on display!

MONTEREY MADNESS: IT’S A WRAP!If you’re an owner or a fan of the Mercedes-Benz 300 SL you’ve probably heard of or dealt with Hans Kleissl, the owner of HK-ENGINEERING, the only company in the world dedicated exclusively to the restoration of 300 SLs. HKE also operates its own racing team and there they were, with two of their SLS-type cars at the Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion. Priceless cars racing; it doesn’t get any better!

It’s unlikely you’d order pizza as part a formal seven-course meal, but back in the early-1980s your cheesy dough might have been delivered to your home in a two-seat, three-wheeled Tritan A2. Only 10 of these super-rare Domino’s Pizza delivery vehicles were ever built and this one had attendees at the Little Car Show in Pacific Grove drooling for a ride.

More than 30 pre-war Bentleys, courtesy of the W.O. Bentley Tour, were part of Bentley’s 100th Birthday Celebration during Monterey Car Week. I had the pleasure to chat with car collectors and insurance gurus James and Josh Grundy who had brought their re-bodied ‘26 Speed Six Bentley to The Quail, A Motorsports Gathering. They were participating in the August 7-21st West Coast Bentley Rally.

MONTEREY MADNESS: IT’S A WRAP!How about an under-bonnet peek at one of the most famous Bentley’s in the world? This is the supercharged, 4 ½ liter ‘29 Vanden Plas Le Mans Tourer “Birken Blower 4” Bentley that raced at Brooklands, the Tourist Trophy, the Irish Grand Prix, the French Grand Prix and Le Mans. Owned by Ralph Lauren and proudly displayed at the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance.

The Japanese Automotive Invitational was located a chopstick toss from the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance. The show was organized by Infinity and Motor Trend and featured a special selection of industry classics – including this crisp ‘66 Hino Contessa 1300S. Designed in Italy by Giovanni Michelotti, the rear-engine, rear-wheel-drive Contessa ended its three-year production run in 1967 when Toyota purchased Hino.

MONTEREY MADNESS: IT’S A WRAP!“The earth will shake violently, trees will be uprooted, mountains will fall, and all binds will snap – Fenyr will be free.” So states the adapted Prose Edda quote used on W Motors’ Fenyr Supersport landing page. Seems appropriate since the only thing in the way of this limited edition, 800 horsepower HyperCar at The Quail is the deeply rooted, shadowed tree at the nose end of its display platform!

Follow the money. If you’re a vendor of high-end collectibles and gift items looking for qualified customers, a showcase at both Pebble Beach and the Quail seems a smart way to focus on sales. House of Whitley brought a unique collection of highly restored, vintage telescopes and binoculars to Car Week – including this plated, highly polished and precise 10×80 Kreigsmarine German Binocular on a custom tripod. Yours to grab for just $21,500!

MONTEREY MADNESS: IT’S A WRAP!I’d like to end this Monterey Car Week dessert course with something a little less filling, a little more digestible – like this lean ’70 Mini Cooper. Owner Brad Winter of Nevada brought his mighty Mini to The Little Car Show in Pacific Grove. It was originally imported from Germany with left-hand drive and features tasty suspension, steering and interior upgrades. Yummy!

In addition to being CGC’s intrepid photojournalist on the West Coast, Jim Palam is the creative force behind advertising-marketing firm, Jim Palam & Partners in Solvang, CA, a serious British car & cycle guy, and artistic photographer. He’s also a full-time foodie and wine aficionado!  We’re lucky to have him. http://www.jimpalam.com/

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