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Monterey 2011 – Great Show in Carmel – Concorso Italiano a Bust – for Us Anyway

As usual we headed up to Monterey, California for the classic car week in August . If you are at all interested in antique or classic cars this is an event you have to take in at least once.

Our friend Mark had his E-type selected as one of the press cars for Jaguar’s 50th anniversary of the E-type celebration. Man, I was sorry that I had not had my E-type finished because they were trying to represent a range of models and I might have got it selected. Mark got all sorts of goodies including tickets to the opening party for Pebble Beach – and two tickets for the Quail Motor Sports Gathering. Those are hard to get and worth a lot of money. Alas – it gets even worse – there also was a special parade lap set-up at Laguna Seca for E-types on the Saturday. Again – how fun that would have been!

The road to Monterey 2011. The view from the Alfa of a beautiful Jaguar E-type.

Alas – not having the Jaguar finished we decided to take my wife’s Alfa up to Monterey – which meant me riding as navigator and mechanic. No problem though – it is still a lot of fun. One of the high points of the week was the free display of cars on the main street of Carmel on Thursday mid-day. This is the conclusion of a little rally that if Pebble beach cars participate in they can get tie-breaker points. So, this is a great chance to see lots of fabulous cars for free in a very nice and relaxed atmosphere. The cars arrive around noon and stay until around 2:00 pm. After that there are plenty of great places in Carmel for a late lunch. Perfect!

2011 Carmel Pebble Beach Rally Stop

We were excited to get to Concorso Italiano on Thursday. In 2010 it was the 100th anniversary of Alfa Romeo and there were hundreds of beautiful cars all along the golf course near Laguna Seca. It was really nice to park our car with the other Spiders and hang out with the Alfa folks. We were looking forward to a similar day in 2011. What a bust! We arrived with a line of cars at around 9:00 and then found to our chagrin that we were being excluded from parking with the other other Alfas in the main area. In fact a sad line of Alfas, Ferraris (including a beautiful F40), Lambos etc. were all shunted off to a parking lot outside the event because they had started to admit spectators and would not let anyone else park their cars in the event. It was a real disappointment as it meant after paying to join the Concorso Italiano event and hang with the other Alfistas our little Spider was stuck outside. We did walk into the event in any case and frankly found it disappointing. There seemed a lot less cars than last year and really not much in the way of the really interesting classics that had been so rich on the ground. We left early to get to the Pacific Grove Rally. There is a German show at the same time – or we might just save up the pennies and take in the Quail.   However, we will remember to get to Concorso EARLY next time we go to that.  Do the same to avoid our disappointment.

Concorso Italiano 2011 – Thin  in my opinion.

2 Comments

  1. Larry says

    You car was locked outside because you did not arrive prior to the published deadline. Snooze, you lose. Not fair to rag on the event organizers for your failure to read the rules. IMHO

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    • gmmacdonald says

      Fair enough Larry – we probably got to the main entrance slightly after 9 – and judging from the number of cars ahead of us in line being shunted to the outside parking they must have closed the gate pretty much on the second. So for us a bust – and a lesson for everyone going to Concorso in the future. Go early.

      On the other hand – as the picture tells – the numbers of Alfa’s (particularly the really interesting ones) seemed down this year a bit more that I would have anticipated anyway. The thing is you have Heroes of the Autobahn getting bigger if you are into Porsches and BMS’s, the Quail for the high classics, Pacific Grove for the eclectic, various vendors and RetroAuto at Pebble Beach, the auctions, and the preliminary stuff at the track at Laguna Seca – so there is a lot vying for your time on the Friday when Concorso is held.

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