A 1938 Alfa Romeo owned by Jon and Mary Shirley of Medina, Wash., was named “Best of Show” at the 58th Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance held Sunday along the 18th fairway of Pebble Beach Golf Links. Proceeds from raffles, auctions, sponsorships and gate receipts helped contribute more than $1.3 million to charity for the third consecutive year.
Jon Shirley, the former president and chief operating officer of Microsoft who resides in Medina, Wash., purchased his 1938 Alfa Romeo 8C 2900B Touring Berlinetta four years ago. The 8C 2900B was Alfa Romeo’s most prestigious grand touring car of the 1930s. Only 33 examples were ever completed for road use, and most were bodied by Carrozzeria Touring. The body on this car is unique; one of six privately commissioned Berlinettas, it was used in several advertisements by Alfa.
“This car has an intriguing history,” says Shirley. “It won the first race at Watkins Glen in 1948, and though the car’s been driven quite a bit, it’s never been wrecked. I’ve always been an Alfa fan, so winning at Pebble Beach just doesn’t get much better. I can’t wait to take it back on the road real soon.”
Competitors from 27 states and 12 countries brought their prized automotive possessions to California’s Monterey Peninsula for judging in 24 classes.
“It takes an amazing level of elegance for a closed car like this Alfa to win here,” says Concours Chairman Sandra Kasky Button. “It requires the ultimate in style, grace and proportion. This car has all of that. It has exquisite lines, balance and all of the excitement that only an 8C Alfa can provide.”
“The Pebble Beach Concours has truly become ‘the world’s concours.’ In addition to enthusiasts, sponsors and media from around the globe, this year we welcomed exotic, historic vehicles from as far away as Hong Kong, Monaco, Germany and Brazil.
The Concours saluted Lancia, Lamborghini and General Motors’ 100th anniversary, showcasing the GM Motorama road show, the Cadillac V-16, GM Woodies and GM-powered sports cars. Overall, more than 200 classic vehicles, ranging from the event’s oldest competitor – an 1892 Peugeot – to a rare collection of six Ferrari California Spyders displayed their automotive wares at the annual classic car showcase.
Tonight Show host Jay Leno, a regular Concours participant, brought his hefty 20+ liter 1953 Chrysler Tank Car to Pebble Beach.
“This is an M47 Patton Tank engine with twin turbos, it has 1,600 horsepower and weighs about five tons,” says Leno. “That’s not really much when you consider the engine is meant to move a 120,000-pound tank. Maybe you build cars like this when you have more money than brains, but I’ve driven it to work and it’s gotten up to 145 mph at the GM Proving Grounds.
“Actually, most people don’t know this is really a hybrid. It starts off running on gas…then you get on the freeway and it runs on even more gas.”
The Pebble Beach Concours happens every year on the third Sunday in August, blending automotive design, craftsmanship and history,” says Kasky. “And the best news of all, with the $1 million-plus we raised for our charities this year, the Pebble Beach Concours has now contributed well over $11 million during the event’s history.”
The 59th Pebble Beach Concours is slated for Sunday, August 16, 2009 with Bentley and Bugatti serving as the official marques.
[Source: Pebble Beach Concours]