Since I came back from Monterey, people have been asking me – “What did you do there?” mostly my wife, who I left with our 7 month old and my mother-in-law. It’s hard to describe what Monterey is all about during the Historics weekend.
I grew up in Michigan where I had read about Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance and Laguna Seca for years. I always wished I could go – the best my area had to offer was Meadowbrook and Waterford Raceway. So when I moved out here in 2000 I put the Historics weekend on my calendar. Since then I’ve gone 3 times, each time I see something new.
During the Historics weekend, around August 15th every year, there are three types of events going, Historics Racing, Concours and Auctions. This is not to ignore any fun runs, tours and just hanging out with the boys. Laguna Seca is the host of the Historic racing. The amazing aspect of this type of racing is that every car on the track was once run in an actual race during its era. There are times that you will look out onto the track and see two cars coming down the corkscrew and you would swear they had wagon wheels fitted onto all four corners. You know the type, where the drivers torso is the highest point of the car – yeah, crazy to think they used to race down city streets with no protection – even the spectators back then weren’t protected from the racecars, having nothing more than a bale of hay between them and the car coming at 80 mph. Yet, here are modern men/women driving the wheels off of these machines.
There are several concours events that take place over the weekend. Pebble Beach is of course the most recognized, I still haven’t made it to this concourse – mostly because the cost of entry eats into my wallet more than I’d like. But there is also the Italian version, Concorso Italiano, if you’re an enthusiast of everything Italian than this is the place for you. Another great one is The Quail, which is also big dollar but I’ve heard it worth the money. I was too busy blowing the dust off of the back roads to hit any of the concours this year but Paul went to Pebble so he has some great pictures. (This is Paul doing what he does best)
Every night in Monterey one can hear the auctioneer at the Double Tree Hotel, it’s the RM Auction and they are busy all weekend selling cars that no working stiffs like us can afford. There are a couple auctions going on over the weekend, and for a few bucks you can watch all the action. For the most part you can see all the cars that go across the auction block from the street – one of them you can actually get inside the cars and dream a little dream.
So really, what goes on during the Historics weekend in Monterey. It can be best described by; it’s where grown men go to be boys again – it’s all about cars. And if your wife/partner/mother ever asks you if they can come with, just politely say no – the small argument you have before going will be much less than the 3 days of arguing you will have if they do come.
Until next time.