Concorso Italiano 2007, August 17th.
Chronicled by John McNamee
The journey started at 5:30 pm on Thursday in route to Morgan Hill. In years past, this has been the ritual; stay there and drive to concorso the next morning. The Pantera was performing great, the usual picture phones, and digital pictures of the Pantera are the norm from other drivers on the freeway, I'm used to it. Stopped in Tracy to gas up. I noticed that the gas, temp, volt, and oil pressure gauges went out, it has happened before and usually they come back on...(remember this tid-bit). While at the gas station an impromptu car show began. I answered all questions and dazzled the crowd. I can really relate to Paris Hilton, on how much attention we both attract.
Finally back in the car, Morgan Hill here I come. The entire trip I was driving maybe 5 miles over the speed limit, simply being the law abiding citizen I am. I received lots of thumbs up from many citizens driving their mini vans to rice rockets. While driving through Livermore an officer in a CHP car was following me over in the far lane. He would get next to me, pull ahead of me, then get behind me for over 3 miles...then the lights came on. Mind you I was driving the posted speed limit so I knew it wasn't speeding. After I pulled over and stopped, I started getting the proper documentation ready; he didn't even look at anything. He said he wanted any type of probable cause to stop me, so he could check out the car! Of course the missing front plate was a criminal offense. No citation, just car talk about the Pantera, and the officer was going to Laguna Seca on Saturday, so a true bond was established (hopefully a friend; say if my accelerator sticks and I have no control of driving over a 100 mph). I arrived at the hotel with no further problems and talked the hotel manager into letting me park the car in the front valet area.
Alarm, 6 am, ready to go, continental breakfast and fruit, and I hit the road for my 1-hour drive on a crisp morning. As usual the picture phone/digital camera shots were being snapped, the Pantera was enjoying the cool weather and great drive. Got to HWY 1 and followed the signs to Concorso. The line was not very long and everything was moving fine. I pulled into the entrance to Concorso, received my packet of stuff and proceeded to the staging area. Remember the gauges that went out? Well the huge sucker fans were on the same circuit.
So, as I was entering the staging area I noticed a little smoke coming from my engine cover grill and Iím thinking maybe a little oil on the headers. Nay nay, the smoke is steam.... getting closer to the Pantera corral. I was about number 3 in line and the steam was getting VERY noticeable. Needless to say the brethren saw the situation and I was immediately pointed to a display area and parked. The steam show was impressive. Checked fuse box to see a melted fuse. Of course any Pantera owner NEVER travels without fuses. So I cleaned off the prongs, installed a new fuse, the fans came on and gauges came to life. Time to clean up and get ready for the show.
One very hot car!
It took about 30 minutes to prep the Pantera, cleaning the coolant puke off the motor and body, wiping the entire car down, placing the registration card on the dash, and folded the seat belts just rightÖ itís show time.
Cleaned up and looking good.
I left the Pantera area and strolled around the venue. I started off in the back of the event seeing a flood of Ferraris; you guessed it, red Ferraris. Row after row, red, red, red, an occasional yellow or black one, but all in all a parking lot. Alfa, Lancia, Abarth, Maserati were in the areas and very well represented. The Lamborghini area was crammed with raging bulls, Gallardo, Murcielago, Miura, and Countach. There were more Lambos that I had ever seen at the concorso. One thing for Lamborghini, their colors are awesome. I bet many people are influenced by there vibrant colors. The German machines were out on the back forty, along with a few NSXís and various other smaller represented marques.
Next it was time to cruise back to the back to the Pantera corral. John Worsley was guarding my car. Hundreds of people were disappointed that there were not any Bricklinís, maybe next year (yea, right!). There was such a crowd around my car, security had to rope off a viewing area to keep the people moving; again Paris and I are used to it. There were only 44 deTomasos present; 41 Panteras, 2 Mongooses, 1 Longchamp, and the Adlerís GT racecar. Here are my observations on colors of the cars present. Approximately 16-17 red, followed by 8 yellow, 7 white, a couple various shades of gray/silver, a couple of various blues, 1 green, and one very eye popping crowd pleasing vibrant sunburst orange. Tom and Kathy Vonaís red Pantera was in a row of 4 other red Panteras and their Pantera had the richest shade of red, beautiful. As for Capital Pantera participants it was the Vonaís and McNamee.
Tom's red beauty
Mike Drew was all over the place talking to all the members and I had many conversations with car owners and members who were in the "process". As you cruise around the various marques there is truly an attitude each manufacture exhibits. No great news here, but it is evident. In the Ferrari group, their cars are judged by how many miles are NOT driven. I don't get it, beautiful cars and no mileage. When you see Glen Cramer ask him how many miles he has on his new purchase of a Ferrari 328. Capitol Panteras member Glen Cramer has temporally left the deTomaso stable for now, but he'll be back. He was showing his RED Lambo, what a super car. On that subject, if you hang around the Lambo people they are the animated, fun loving, partying group. They drive their machines and seem to relish the driving experience. Of course the Lambo models were present, Italian was being spoken, cigars being smoked, and wine being drank. Viva Lamborghini.
The concorso was winding down and I had a little problem concerning the missing water. They were selling bottled water for $3 and figured I needed 10-12 bottles, about 30-36 bucks. I love my car but even I draw the line over bottled water. I found the maintenance shack and was told to stop by on the way out and fill up. Time to go, show over, and the car was refilled with water.
When you leave the concorso there is a gauntlet of car lovers getting their last pictures of the cars exiting the venue on the service road. Well a couple of lads were giving me the spin um up sign, so not to disappoint, I laid a nice 5 foot patch (it was out of view of the local constable), turned left homeward bound.
Rumor has it, the concorso will NOT be back next year at the Bayonet Black Horse Golf Course. There were earthmovers and tractors working in the distance; the condos are coming.
SCCA Regionals, September 1st.
by Emilia Seiferling
Shelby Club Car Show, September 5th.
by Emilia Seiferling
We were able to attend the "First Annual End of Summer Car Show" put on by the River City Shelby Club. I would not have been able to join Jim except for a last minute cancellation at my office. It was a workday and we do live 50-plus miles from Sacramento but the cancellation allowed me to join Jim. The drive up to Sacramento went very smoothly until we got to the cross-town freeway. From that point on it was stop and go or slow and go all the way to the off ramp at Sunrise. Brookfield's Restaurant was just around the corner for the car display and dinner. This is the regular meeting place for The River City Shelby Club. We parked the Pantera, got registered for the display, and then went in to have dinner. On the way into the restaurant we saw CP member John Worsley. He had arrived earlier in the Bricklin. It turned out that we were both in Class C ; Sports Cars, Ford powered. We enjoyed our dinner since we had had a very small lunch and by now it was well after 6 PM. During dinner CP member Rick Carlile joined us briefly and he filled us in on how Carl had done at the races on Sunday. Rick had gone over to watch the race on Sunday. John also came inside and chatted with us during dinner. When we finished and went back to the car display we met up with CP member Henry Kirk. No Pantera with Henry that night, but we learned that his Cobra was out of the shop. I got out my lawn chair and relaxed on a tiny spot of grass in the parking lot while Jim walked the display with Henry. I was approached by Rodney who recognized my deTomaso shirt and the fact that we were the lone Pantera at the event. He said his friend has a blue Pantera in El Dorado Hills. We gave him a POCA flyer to give to his friend and our club website. Maybe he will show up at a CP meeting in the future. The voting for the class winners ended sooner than the posted time. Something about the organizers forgot that it would get dark earlier. So Jim didn't get to stuff the ballot box for Class C as he had planned! The awards were given out. There were lots of them. There was first, second, and third place for each of the eight classes. The winners got a small plaque and their photo taken with the "Hooter's Girls". Well, we thought that we had a chance to win Class C. We thought that the Bricklin was our only competition, but then we found out that the only Ford GT at the display was in Class C! We did get second place. And I feel that John had third stolen from him. It went to a Mustang GT500. How did that car end up in Class C when there were two different Mustang classes? After the car show, the trip home took 20% less time for us. It also got cooler each mile that we got closer to home. You local guys missed a nice gathering.
Bodega Bay Drive, September 8th.
by Emilia Seiferling
It had been hot weather the past week so the thought of a trip to the Coast was really nice. The trip was a cruise with the Capitol Panteras and friends to Bodega Bay. Jim and I left home a bit early to head for the designated meeting place at the Cordelia Junction McDonald's, near Fairfield. We wanted to allow time to enjoy our coffee and breakfast burrito before the Sacramento group arrived. If you haven't had one of their breakfast burritos, they are good and the McDonald's coffee is good and much more reasonable in price than the coffee at the near by Starbucks. The Sacramento group arrived: Tom & Kathy Vona in their red Pantera, John & Alice Worsley in the red Bricklin, and Tom's friend Warren in his Corvette. We headed west on Highway 12 to join up with the Napa group that would be joining us. At the junction of Hwy 29 & Hwy 12 we picked up two more Panteras, both red; Mike & Nancy Haney and Mike & Mathew Nevins. Nancy and Mike are PCNC members and Mike we hope will soon join POCA. We continued west through Petaluma toward the Coast. Our first stop was at the Wild Flour Bakery in Freestone. It is an artisan bakery making a wide selection of tasty natural breads. It is a favorite of Tom & Kathy. It was quite the happening place for being located in such a tiny, wide place in the road! We continued on to Occidental for lunch where we dined at Negri's Italian Restaurant, the correct choice for an Italian car club. I was a bit worried about walking in on a Saturday afternoon for lunch with a group of 11 without reservations. They just pushed two tables together and we were good to go. We all enjoyed our meal and conversations. Italian food and cars meant that there was a lot of talk about Italy and things Italian. I think that Jim and I were the only people at the table who have not been to Italy. Guess we need to plan a trip to Italy. After lunch we walked around Occidental to check out the shops and then we were off to Bodega Bay. We stopped at the Tides to make a rest stop, get clam chowder to go and sit on the patio and enjoy the cool weather and the sea air. This was especially nice since there had been so much smoke in the valley air the past few days from the various forest fires in our area. We split up for the trip home. Our trip was about 220 miles total with no mechanical issues. Our group might have been small, but all enjoyed it. Thank you Tom for being our leader for this trip. Where will you take us on the next tour?
It wouldn't be an Italian restaurant without a red checkered tablecloth.
Cruising down Hwy 1, just north of Bodega Bay
Fun Ford Sunday, September 9th
The weather was perfect, but we could have had better attendance at the Capitol Pantera monthly meeting. The cars that were eligible for the "Driving for Gas" raffle were four Panteras, a DeLorean and the Bricklin. Members present were; Tom & Kathy Vona, John Worsley, Jim & Emilia Seiferling, Ken Montgomery, Jeff Budelli, John McNamee, Rick Carlile, Rick Moseley, Mike Drew.
There was a raffle for a $20 gift card at Kragen's. Our webmaster, Ken Montgomery, won the raffle.
Rick Carlile won the "Driving for Gas" raffle. The $10 will cover a bit of a new MSD box, as Rick's Pantera made it about 1 block after the meeting and then died. Exactly the same symptoms as Mike Drew had a couple of months ago. Mike was at the meeting. Coincidence? You decide.
The date for a drive to the Blackhawk Museum is set it for Sunday, September 16. It will be a tour of the museum (cost $5 per person), display parking and lunch at restaurant in the center near (walking distance from) the museum. So far we have Mike & Nancy, Jim & Emilia, John Worsley, Greg & Mia Jacobs, and Merry & Steve Dalcino. If you would like to join the group, please contact Jim at firstname.lastname@example.org . Jim & I will be leaving from Rio Vista and be going directly to San Ramon. We all need to be at the Museum at 10 AM.
John McNamee had an inquiry about Capitol Pantera shirts. Lamar would like to get one and John needs a few more orders to make it worth doing a run at his shop. If you would like to get a shirt, let Jim know.
The Capitol Panteras are still number one in the POCA article contest. We will need some members to step forward and write about their automotive adventures. I know that several of you will be at Serrano. Would you please write about the show for our newsletter? If it is any good maybe "Profiles" or the POCA Newsletter will pick it up. Jim and I are already committed to the Alameda Italian Car show on the same day.
Please note that the Joint Brunch with the Reno-Tahoe Panteras has been rescheduled to Sunday, Oct. 14. The meeting place is yet to be decided. And the whole thing is weather permitting. The Farmer's Almanac is predicting a warm, dry winter. That could mean a nice autumn drive in the Sierras for your Pantera. We will keep you posted on the details as they develop.
There will be a silent movie at the Towe Auto Museum this Friday, Sept. 14th. The movie will be "The Navigator"(1924) staring Buster Keaton. If you check out the link to the Sierra Chapter of ATOS you can download a form to get first timers in for free. http://theatreorgans.com/ca/sierra/ There will also be a Halloween movie, Friday Oct 26th. The movie will be "The Hunchback of Notre Dame" (1923) staring Lon Chaney.