MONTEREY — As Monterey Classic Car Week 2022 kicks off this week, the now 10-day affair begins how it began — casually elegant.
Friday afternoon the revelry kicks off with the Fourth Annual Concours in Pasadera, a recall event to the early days of the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance, when parking close to fairways and enjoying excellent cars was a relaxing treat for customers.
It’s an experience Concours at Pasadera founder Rick Barnett remembers well and hopes to recreate.
“A lot has changed since 1979,” said Barnett, recalling his first visit to Concours Sunday. ‘You could . . . park not too far from the lodge and walk onto the lawn. Nowadays you have to park and take a bus (to the golf course)… Autoweek has become complicated. So the intent of the Concours in Pasadera is to create a casual, elegant atmosphere for car collectors and guests to enjoy together.”
Just a few miles away from WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca, the Friday race will take place at The Club in Pasadera, 100 Pasadera Dr., from 3:00 PM to 6:00 PM. Club members and other VIPs are invited to arrive one hour early at 2pm
The cars on display will be a celebration of Ferrari, celebrating the manufacturer’s 75th anniversary. But Ferrari won’t be the only name on the event’s Center Court, where 40 featured cars are in the running for Best in Show. Instead, the Concours is widening its gates to promote Ferrari’s design houses: Pininfarina, Ghia, Bertone, Scaglietti, Zagato and other coachbuilders responsible for the carmaker’s acclaimed looks over the decades.
“A lot of people think that Ferrari is the car designer and manufacturer,” explains Barnett. “But in fact Ferrari has been building the frame, suspension and engine since the early days, dating back to the 1930s, but they would rely on coachbuilders – or the body manufacturers – to create the bodies that would work in combination. with the car and the frame.”
To commemorate the partnership, both Ferrari and non-Ferrari cars designed by Ferrari body builders will curate the exhibit. Barnett said that by broadening the field, the Concours aims to both educate and entertain.
“Yes, there will be some fantastic Ferraris … but there will also be other cars,” he said, citing cars from unexpected sources such as Volvo, MG and even Citroën that share a designer with Ferrari. “People will see the design influences that shaped Ferrari’s culture, not just Ferrari.”
In addition to the Center Court, the Concours in Pasadera plans to further diversify its display with three other showcase categories, for a total of 100 cars to admire.
One category, aptly named Corvette Coral, will foreshadow the core brand that will celebrate Corvette’s 70th anniversary next year. Another has invited selected car exhibitors from previous years to come back with their cars for a special “Alumni Vehicle” exhibition. And to round out the program, 20 cars, chosen for their diversity of automotive design and engineering contributions, will form a class called “Fairway One”.
As guests can read, Colin Moody, former executive chef of Monterey Peninsula Country Club, will be hosting the Concours. Meanwhile, proceeds from the event will benefit CASA — Court Appointed Special Advocates for Children — the addiction recovery program of the Bridge Restoration Ministry and the Laguna Seca Raceway Foundation.
“We’re excited to be the start, the launch, the start of Car Week in Pasadera,” said Barnett. “It’s important to us to do a good job. We almost feel it is a responsibility to do it right, to represent the beginning of something very special here on the Monterey Peninsula.”
Elsewhere on the peninsula, the opening events will continue with the Monterey Car Week Kick-Off. Back for its 13th year, the annual display will host 30 rare race cars along Alvarado Street from 5-7pm on Friday nights. Not just for show, the vintage makes and models will also be active Saturday and Sunday participants in the Monterey Pre-Reunion of WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca. But not before those in attendance take a look at what they can only briefly see from the racetrack.
“The motivation (for the event) was that we wanted to bring the show to the community, to share these cars that will be on display at the track,” said Barry Toepke, director of heritage events and public relations at WeatherTech Raceway. Laguna Seca.
Toepke added that Friday’s kick-off celebration is also an opportunity to meet drivers and understand the stories behind cars. Meet-and-greet opportunities will also be available at Cibo Ristorante, 301 Alvarado St., for a Classic Car Week Driver Reception, complete with complimentary appetizers and live jazz music.
“It’s going to be a good time — and a good week,” Toepke said, looking at this year’s list of more than 25 Classic Car Week events. “People I’ve talked to really want to get out.”
For more information about the Monterey Car Week Kick-Off, the Concours in Pasadera, or what’s coming up next in Monterey Classic Car Week, go to https://www.seemonterey.com/events/sporting/concours/. To read more of the Herald’s coverage of this year’s events, visit www.montereyherald.com/tag/classic-car-week/.