Tag Archives: racing

Vintage v Modern Motoring

The original Mini Cooper
The original Mini Cooper

There are many choices in motoring, these days. For me, I tend to be a very nostalgic person. I love most vintage things and though I have a great appreciation for modern cars, I tend to gravitate to the elder ones more often than not. I find them very engaging to drive and delight in their analog qualities. It’s a personal choice, but one that I recommend many enthusiasts try as I believe you will feel the same after driving one and living with it for a time. At the end of it all, you’ll emerge a better person for it.

Vintage Ferrari
Vintage Ferrari
Shelby Cobra
Shelby Cobra

If you are a casual user of the automobile, or view them as not much more than appliances, you might not understand this, but I invite you to read on. There are qualities in these cars worth noting; particularly in the older ones. Owning and driving one can change you in many ways. You will become adept at conversing with a wide range of people and will develop an appreciation for the finer details that can be found in places where you would least expect it.

Vintage Jaguar S Type
Vintage Jaguar S Type

Some of my favorite vintage cars are the ones that are very well used. They have a wonderful patina and the many blemishes tell a story about the car’s life. Well-worn paint often brings to mind the many times a caring owner polished it. A cracked and soft leather seat lets you know how many countless times someone sat in it and drove off on untold adventures. The worn pedals display the miles driven as much as the numbers on the odometer do.

There is much to love about the feel and sound of driving one as well. The experience goes well beyond the aesthetics. Every shift, every turn of the wheel and every press on the accelerator connects you to the road and the driving experience. You hear the exhaust note and feel the road in the seat of your pants and through the wheel. It guides you as you make demands of the car.

Mercedes Benz 300 SL Gullwing
Mercedes Benz 300 SL Gullwing
Austin Healey 100M
Austin Healey 100M

Every stop during your travels, be it a stop light or fuel stop, will no doubt result in countless conversations with admirers and like-minded individuals. For many, seeing a vintage car out and about brings back great memories for them and most are more than willing to share. If you’re the type to shy away from people, owning and running a vintage car will cure you of that. It won’t be long before you’re more than comfortable talking to almost anyone.

Jaguar XK120
Jaguar XK120

At the end of the day, living with and driving a vintage car makes you a much more well-rounded and appreciative person. That’s a good thing. We can all use a step back into the past every now and again. It’s an excellent way to get back into touch with reality and the people around us as we get more connected in a tactile way, rather than an electronic way.

Vintage dash and instruments
Vintage dash and instruments
Riley Brooklands Special gains a new admirer
Riley Brooklands Special gains a new admirer
Lamborghini Countach
Lamborghini Countach
Out and about in an MG GT
Out and about in an MG GT
Porsche 356 Convertible D
Porsche 356 Convertible D

Vintage Motoring

The accompanying video from Petrolicious focuses on vintage supercars of the 70’s and what it is like to drive them. It demonstrates the joys of owning and running such cars and what about them creates the attraction, and addiction, for many. It’s a video that can be applied to the entirety of vintage car ownership in general.

I have great admiration for cars in general – old and new – but my true love tends to reside in the past. I find vintage cars much more engaging and rewarding to drive and if you know me, you know I chat about this fact ad nauseam.

Today’s cars are far safer and well ahead in terms of technology and usability, but they tend to create a situation where some of the passion is lost rendering the automobile as just a way to get around. They lack a voice and a distinct personality. You have to reach pretty high up into the world of super cars and hyper cars to find anything that can stir the emotions, but even then, I don’t think they captivate or engage like a vintage car.

Take any country road and drive it in a modern car and then a vintage car. I would wager you will end the trip having a more eventful experience in the vintage car. You will have driven the road and have been focused on it and engaged in the drive. I feel this is true even if you take out the most modern sports car. I love the style and technology packed into the new examples, but dislike the disconnect from when you could feel what was going on and thus, become a better and more attentive driver each time you went out.

 

PVGP Keg Tapping

The PVGPs new sponsor for the Winners Circle...Hofbrauhaus!
The PVGPs new sponsor for the Winners Circle…Hofbrauhaus!
PVGP racecars at Hofbrauhaus
PVGP racecars at Hofbrauhaus

The Pittsburgh Vintage Grand Prix received a special honor from its new sponsor Hofbrauhaus last evening in the form of a keg party. In my book, that’s not a bad way to kick a relationship off. Every first Wednesday of the month, Hofbrauhaus holds a keg tapping party. For July, Grand Prix month, they opened their official beer for the PVGP and the party was intense.

John & Dotti Bechtol's 1972 Alfa Romeo Spider
John & Dotti Bechtol’s 1972 Alfa Romeo Spider
PVGP MGA
PVGP MGA

Several sports cars were on display just outside the building and quite a few of the PVGP volunteers and supporters were on hand to help get the celebration started. The food was superb and the beer fantastic! Since most of us had never been to a keg tapping party like this, we were all in for a great treat filled with music, many many toasts, a parade, and some Grand Prix Pilsner.

Porsche 911 RS
Jim Southwood’s 1972 Porsche 911 T

At the end of the evening it was clear. These lads know how to party and they are very enthusiastic in their support of the PVGP. The winners circle will be hopping this year for sure so if you’re competing, you might want to drive a little harder and get on the podium. This is sizing up to be a perfect relationship for both Hofbrauhaus and the PVGP.

Live entertainment
Live entertainment
Awaiting the keg tapping
Awaiting the keg tapping
The parade
The parade

PVGP keg tapping

 

Dan DelBianco rallying the crowd
Dan DelBianco rallying the crowd
Members of the PVGP prepare for the keg tapping
Members of the PVGP prepare for the keg tapping
The PVGP Pilsner is served
The PVGP Pilsner is served

DSC0827705

DSC0827805

 

1972 Alfa Romeo spider
1972 Alfa Romeo spider
Porsche Cayman
Porsche Cayman

 

The Grand Ascent 2015

Every year a band of stunning vintage sports cars arrive at the grounds of The Hotel Hershey in Hershey PA. They test and tune in preparation for the run to victory up a hill that has challenged drivers since the 1950s. The setting is in the woods and provides beautiful vistas for viewers to watch these drivers race their cars up the hill. It’s a fantastic spectacle that is well worth the journey out if you’ve yet to attend.

Stunning pre-war Bugatti
Stunning pre-war Bugatti

 

Porsche 356 at the ready during The Grand Ascent
Porsche 356 at the ready during The Grand Ascent

Friday welcomes the arrival of the competitors and the air is filled with the sound of engines tuning. Preliminary runs are made up the hill and the dialing in continues in an effort to make the perfect run. It’s a somewhat relaxed setting with much friendly chatter and well-wishing throughout the field. There is still a strong desire among many to win, but the overriding feeling is to have fun and enjoy time with good friends. The driver’s reception in the evening continues that sentiment.

David George's Bear Special Indy Champ Car
David George’s Bear Special Indy Champ Car
1941 Oldsmobile Special owned by Steve Moskowitz
1941 Oldsmobile Special owned by Steve Moskowitz

The morning light on Saturday reveals a similar scene with cars being readied and getting into position based on their grouping. The runs up the hill begin early and run into the afternoon as each driver chases victory. This year Wayne Carini was a guest and fielded his Triumph TR4. He made some great runs, as did some outstanding contenders in the Pre-war group.

Wayne Carini in his Triumph TR4
Wayne Carini in his Triumph TR4
1953 Aston Martin DB2/4 during The Grand Ascent
1953 Aston Martin DB2/4 during The Grand Ascent

Once again, it was a superb event. One that will long be on my calendar of events to attend. Check out the shots accompanying this article and follow this link to view the full gallery of images from the weekend.

David George's Bear Special Indy Champ Car
David George’s Bear Special Indy Champ Car

Pittsburgh Vintage Grand Prix Goes High Style

PVGP Blacktie & Tailpipes gathering
PVGP Blacktie & Tailpipes gathering

You can’t have a huge automotive event – eighth largest in the world – without kicking it off in a big way. Every year, the Pittsburgh Vintage Grand Prix does it in style with the Black Tie and Tailpipes Gala. A new location is selected each year and a large number of donations are made to help the auction raise money for the charities.

Lincoln at the PVGP Black Tie Gala
Lincoln at the PVGP Black Tie Gala
Lotus at the PVGP Blacktie & Tailpipes Gala
Lotus at the PVGP Blacktie & Tailpipes Gala

This year the host for the event will again be the South Hills Country Club.  The PVGP celebrated there in 2013 and is looking to exceed the success that event had. It’s a great venue and the turnout is always superb, so I would expect things to go rather well. There should be an abundance of well-dressed attendees and some stunning cars.

Guests at the PVGP Blacktie & Tailpipes Gala
Guests at the PVGP Blacktie & Tailpipes Gala

Enjoy the images posted with this article and as always, follow the links for more from previous years. You can always purchase images from the site and with a portion of the profits going to the PVGP, you will be helping the charities. Enjoy!

Guests enjoying the PVGP Blacktie & Tailpipes Gala
Guests enjoying the PVGP Blacktie & Tailpipes Gala
Jaguar Pace Car at the PVGP Blacktie & Tailpipes Gala
Jaguar Pace Car at the PVGP Blacktie & Tailpipes Gala
Maserati Ghibli at PVGP Blacktie & Tailpipes Gala
Maserati Ghibli at PVGP Blacktie & Tailpipes Gala
PVGP Blacktie & Tailpipes Gala guests
PVGP Blacktie & Tailpipes Gala guests
You can't have a party without an Alfa Romeo
You can’t have a party without an Alfa Romeo

P.S. As I write this, there are still tickets available. Head on over the PVGP site and buy yours now!

Mustangs at the PVGP Blacktie & Tailpipes Gala
Mustangs at the PVGP Blacktie & Tailpipes Gala

BLUE MAX

Blue Max
Blue Max

The name is so fitting to this car. It is German, it is indeed blue, and was the pinnacle for its time. Though some nagging misunderstandings still persist about this car, it is one well worth a look if you are ever in the market for a unique and well-rounded vintage super car.

Porsche 928 Car of the Year
Porsche 928 Car of the Year

The Porsche 928 is a car that has long been one that some either love or dare I say, hate. That love/hate is fostered for a variety of reasons. The love for it comes from an appreciation of the cars innovations as well as its power, speed, and comfort. The hate, well that comes from myths about high maintenance costs, the belief to some that it is slow and fat and the fact that it was created to supplant the mighty 911. Its pluses became minuses for many as it was everything the 911 wasn’t. It had a water-cooled engine residing in the front with two extra cylinders, near equal weight distribution, and great handling both on and off track making it a wonderful GT car.

Porsche 928
Porsche 928

It was a ground up effort from Porsche from the start and the end result was a quite striking form. I often run hot and cold on this car, but in the form you see here, it is an undeniable winner. This particular car is coated in the perfect color matched to the wildly fantastic Pasha interior and is even wearing the right shoes. It’s the total package right down to the very spider like intake hiding just beneath the hood. Perhaps the only thing missing from this particular model is a…well…nothing. This one is spot on from nose to tail.

Porsche 928 Phone Dial Wheels
Porsche 928 Phone Dial Wheels
Porsche 928 Pasha Seats
Porsche 928 Pasha Seats
Porsche 928 Central Console
Porsche 928 Central Console
Porsche 928 Engine
Porsche 928 Engine
Porsche 928 Instrument Cluster
Porsche 928 Instrument Cluster

So the next time you are out and see this, or any other 928, stop and show it some love. You won’t be disappointed you took the time to do so. For a few more images of this car, pop on over to this gallery.

Porsche 928 Door Sill
Porsche 928 Door Sill

Counting Down The Days

It’s never too early to start counting down to the Pittsburgh Vintage Grand Prix. It’s one of those events that you look forward to attending shortly after the last one ended. If you could experience sensory overload from too much automotive exposure – which is impossible by the way – this would be the event to subject you to it. You have everything from black-tie and casual parties to rallyes, shows and full on racing. It literally has everything. With that in mind, it only makes sense to take a look back at last year’s Kick-Off Rallye as that is the event that gets the giant wheels of this machine rolling.

Righthand drive Mini
Righthand drive Mini
Inside the 1961 Chevy Impala
Inside the 1961 Chevy Impala

The Kick-Off Rallye is a great way to start things off. It’s casual fun that offers participants a way to socialize and admire each other’s cars as well engage in some spirited competitive driving. Everything on wheels is acceptable for this event. The past rallyes have hosted the quick and nimble like the MG Midget and Porsche 914 as well as giants like the 1936 Packard and a very impressive 1973 Dodge Monaco. I think there was even a delivery van one year. The streets fill with everything and it makes for great fun and much conversation from participants and spectators alike.

Stunning MGA
Stunning MGA

Driving the course is always a mystery. The clues are clever and keep you on your toes as you try to stay on track while answering questions along the way. If that gets to be burdensome, you can always skip right to the end, get comfortable with a beverage and watch everyone as they roll in. Since the cars are all numbered, it’s a bit fun to see what order they arrive. I guarantee it’s never in order. Not even close. I try to shoot this throughout the event and use the numbers as a gauge to determine how far along things are. That is always a mistake. The route invariably gets people turned around at some point and that includes me, but honestly, that’s part of the fun. Oh and as a side note, should you see me along the route and decide to follow believing I know where I’m going, big mistake. I generally don’t know where I’m going and never get advance notice as to the route. Plus, I often double back as I bounce around trying to photograph everyone.

The large and incharge Dodge Monaco
The large and in charge Dodge Monaco

So do join in if you are able as you won’t regret it. Check out the rest of the photos in this posting and follow this link for more. All shots are available for purchase and a portion of the proceeds will be going to the charities that benefit from the Pittsburgh Vintage Grand Prix. Also, keep checking in as I will be featuring other events as we get closer to this year’s start and will be posting throughout the Grand Prix once it is underway. Enjoy and hope to see you on the road!

The Jag
The Jag
The perfect livery for this Mini
The perfect livery for this Mini
Triumph TR4
Triumph TR4
Austin Healey 3000
Austin Healey 3000
Porsche 550 Spyder
Porsche 550 Spyder

Heading Into the New Year

This got here a lot quicker than I felt it would. Such is life, though, as we motor ahead. Everything moves quicker whether we wish for it to or not. That feeling is likely due to the fact I aint getting any younger and my kids are growing way too fast! It’s the only speed I would like to slow down.

The up side is, I get to jump into new projects quickly and this year will see a multitude of new opportunities with unique commercial shoots, private commissions and art shoots as well as a multitude of shows and special features on select cars.

I encourage you to check back often and share these posts with anyone that will appreciate them. The first few features will be on some unique restoration shops with mad skills! The work rolling out of these shops is nothing short of stunning and is pure art!

Have a great year and keep checking back here often. Take care!

Ford Mustang at Watkins Glen
Ford Mustang at Watkins Glen

Pittsburgh Vintage Grand Prix

This year’s Pittsburgh Vintage Grand Prix featured a number of events that should not be missed. If you have never attended, it should be on your list of summer car show activities. There is really no reason to have not attended yet or to wait any longer.

Porsche 911 on track at Schenley Park
Porsche 911 on track at Schenley Park

 

The weather cooperated, for the most part, save for Saturday at Schenley. The rain that day nearly prevented the show cars from taking to the grass and at the start, you actually might have been better to arrive in a boat. As luck would have it, though, things settled enough that everyone was able to get into position and enjoy the rest of the event. Some of the finest cars were on display from vintage British greats like Bentley, Rolls-Royce, and Aston Martin to all American heavies including Ford GT40s, Corvette, and Shelby Mustangs. The Germans and Italians were well represented as well with impressive displays from Porsche, BMW, Ferrari, Maserati, and Alfa Romeo just to scratch the surface. It was a feats for the eyes with some of the finest curves in automotive history on display.

Ford GT40 MkIV at the Pittsburgh Vintage Grand Prix
Ford GT40 MkIV at the Pittsburgh Vintage Grand Prix

To experience all that the Pittsburgh Vintage Grand Prix has to offer, I have attached a gallery link to this text that will enable you to see the eye candy that was on display at all the events from this year. Do enjoy and feel free to navigate your way through the other galleries I have featured on my site. Until next time!

A beautiful when wet Lancia
A beautiful when wet Lancia