PEBBLE BEACH – The culmination of 10 days of Monterey Classic Car Week events, on Sunday the Concours d’Elegance showcased 200 of the world’s finest collector cars at the Pebble Beach Golf Links, all polished and restored to the highest degree.
Best of Show honors went to a 1932 Duesenberg J Figoni Sports Torpedo owned by Lee R. Anderson Sr. from Naples, Florida.
“This is the world’s most beautiful car museum that comes together one day a year,” said Ken Sacs, looking at a cobalt blue 1938 Lincoln K Brunn Convertible Victoria. “It’s amazing.”
Sacs donned his best Sunday suit and caught this year’s show with his cousin, Dave Solomon. Together they have attended the Concours and Classic Car Week in its entirety for the past four decades. Self-described “huge enthusiasts,” the lure of new antiquities and anecdotes to collect the couple draws the couple back again and again.
“At least these are the kind of cars I like to look at and hear stories about,” said Solomon, noting that he has an old Corvette and 20-year-old Porsche at home in San Jose.
“I can feel my car fever coming on,” Sacs said next to his cousin.
Likewise, Erica Parker and Cammie Garnero indulged their well-established auto-rarity Sunday solution, wearing vintage well with early 20th-century clothing and matching wide-brimmed hats. These Pebble Beach regulars come every August. Garnero first visited the Competition in the 1970s. Meanwhile, for the past 10 years, Parker has routinely made forays into the affair as a “tradition with (her) father,” she said, pointing to her father, Jeff Parker, who was also in attendance on Sunday.
Jeff Parker took the family line further back, adding that he was introduced to the Concours by his father in the 1960s. “I think I have a photo from 1965,” he smiled.
Over the generations, the Parkers said they’ve seen the screen get bigger and busier, but never failed.
“We try not to miss — never,” said Garnero.
The allure of Sunday’s exhibit proved similar to those who came in with no experience on par with the Parkers, but rather keen curiosity for something new.
Erik and Jill Olson have seen show cars drive past their home in Carmel since moving to the area six years ago. However, it wasn’t until this year that they reached the 18th Fairway for the official display at Pebble Beach.
“We’ve heard so much about the activities,” says Erik Olson. “It seemed like a great opportunity to enjoy the day.”
Friends Anthony and Amy Oro, who joined the pair, reiterated the satisfaction of finally seeing the Concours, even as novices to the hobby.
“These cars are just absolutely beautiful,” said Anthony Oro. “This is like fashion week in Paris, but for car people.”
“I find it amazing (that the show) stretches from the concept cars all the way back to the 1920s,” Amy agreed, looking for the next category of cars to peruse.
Splitting its display into nine featured classes, as well as a concept lawn showcasing the latest productions, the Concours is a mosaic of how the industry has progressed and where it will be headed.
Part of that tribute is also a tribute to the anniversary and the achievements that pop up in the automotive world every year. For 2022, the event commemorated two centenary celebrations, for the Lincoln luxury cars and the 24 Hours of Le Mans. It devoted a class to each historic brand.
Jeff Wildon competed in the Lincoln division, bringing his “Taos turquoise” 1956 Lincoln Premiere Convertible Sunday. A one-year design, Wildon said his car was one of only 2,000 originally made, and one of only a hundred left today.
Collecting praise at previous auto shows, including the Lincoln and Continental National Meet and the Ford National Meet in Dallas, Texas, Wildon characterized his car as a rare and revered find.
But the accolades weren’t as satisfying as the performance at Sunday’s Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance.
“It’s a sensation,” he said. “It’s the highest achievement that a car collector can really enjoy.”