Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Dr. Ferry Porsche

I'll be doing a series on auto-related personalities. It's fitting to start with Ferry Porsche.

Ferry Porsche, served as general manager, and the chairman of the board in the early years taking over the company in 1951 when his father passed away. Ferry Porsche's motto was to produce automobiles which had to be reliable and high-quality sports cars of a true utilitarian value. I remember attending a banquet and hearing him say to the attendees, "People really don't need a Porsche, they just want one." He lead Porsche through the 356 years, to the iconic 911s then on to other models. In such an amazingly short time, from those early days of 1948 in Gmund with his father, Porsche has become one of the world's greatest marques. Ferdinand Porsche died 74 days short of the 50th anniversary of the company, at the age of 88, on 27 March 1998, at the family farm in Austria.

This photo was taken at the 1977 Porsche Parade held in San Diego. Although he and his wife Dorothea truly enjoyed this Parade, it was to be the last one they attended.

Blog follower Bob Lampert took this photo and passed it along to me. Bob is an award-winning photographer who also works with film, and digital. Bob first started winning awards for his photography as a young San Diego teenager when he won a prized Kodak photographic award. His passion for photography led him to a photographic career which has spanned over 50 years; winning two Emmy's (1982–1987) and four Golden Mike Awards (1969-1975 and two in 1982). He was hired as a photojournalist for KOGO in 1963 which became KGTV, the ABC affiliate television station in San Diego.

He became a member of San Diego Region of PCA in 1969. He has a true talent for taking candid photos that you well see in future posts.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Amelia Rocks 2010

The Amelia Island Concours d'Elegance in Florida is no doubt the most notable concours on the East Coast. What makes this concours so special in its' short history, which started in 1996, is the eclectic nature of the event. This years show honored NASCAR legend, Richard Petty, as well as celebrating the 50th Anniversary of Sir Stirling Moss' Cuban Grand Prix victory. However, the show also celebrated the 40th Anniversary of the Porsche 917's victories at Daytona and Le Mans.

Porsche enthusiasts and East Coast blog followers Russ Hibbard from South Florida, and Ed Cave from Atlanta, photo documented this event and provided these special photos to share.

Number 2, 917-015 was driven by Pedro Rodriguez and Leo Kinnunen at Daytona.
Number 23, 917-010 painted in the livery which won Le Mans for the first time for Porsche.
Number 3, the 917 called "The Hippy Car" ran 240mph along Mulsanne at Le Mans. The Gulf Oil colors. All above photos by Russ Hibbard.
Not a 917, but still cool, a 907K which came with 2.2 liter flat eights. Photo by Ed Cave.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

A Little Riverside Cheezzz

When I was younger there were always some film stars that I thought were pretty cool. Of course Steve McQueen, Paul Neuman and Charles Bronson were way over the top on the cool-o-meter, but I kinda' also liked Chuck Norris.

Here's some on track film footage of Chuck Norris in "Good Guys Wear Black" at Riverside Raceway in a 74' look-a-like RSR. Notice the 65'-66' 911 chrome interior mirror...I don't think they put those on RSRs.

This is a little cheezzzy, but I like the sounds and footage. By the way, Chuck is 70years old this month.

Here's a link if you can't see it: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4Sci2AYbWuI

Tuesday, March 23, 2010


A few weeks ago Monique and I headed to San Diego Stadium for the "Big Three" swap meet. This event is a once-a-year deal that fills the west lot and more with everything automotive you can think. We love it...it's like a treasure hunt!

I get a thrill handling physical relics of the past and I've scored some pretty cool Porsche parts that you would never guess could be there by the name of the event.

George Taylor was selling parts with his 39' Ford truck on display.

Monique looking for those 911 fog lights.

These all sat on new cars at one time.

How about some manifolds or injection stuff.

Or how about a "Blower".

It's all there and now I can't wait to next year for more pickin'...just like that TV show "American Pickers"!

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Some Thoughts on Sebring

Fellow blog follower Bob Lambert just shot this to me.

With Sebring just finishing this last weekend here are some thoughts as well as some great footage of old and new stuff.

Check it out at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D51hXM7arlg

Saturday, March 20, 2010

One Lap At Riverside

A few weeks ago I posted about the "Riverside Reunion" event. Now, how about a look at one lap of the track in 1965. This was the short track that was used most of the time for PCA and SCCA events. The IMSA guys used the long track and the NASCAR guys used even a little different track configuration.

The track opened in September 1957 and closed in July 1989. Some film shoots back then, were done for parts of these movies: Grand Prix, Winning, Fireball 500, Viva Las Vegas and more.

Those of you that got to drive the track were lucky...new housing and commercial development ended it for everyone else. Sad!

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Bumper Cars

Bumper cars were crazy fun when I was a kid. Even as an adult today, they still look immensely entertaining and I'd probably be on one every weekend if only everyone else lined up to ride them weren't in grade school. Instead of drawing power from the floor or ceiling like regular flat rides, these bumper cars seen around the San Diego area not only run independently - you can drive them down public roads.

Check these out. I've seen them at car shows in La Mesa and Escondido...this is just awesome fun!

They are created by California-based builder Tom Wright, the original set of modified bumper cars came from the Long Beach Pike amusement park's discards. Instead of watching them join the trash heap, he took out the Harley motors, replaced it with 750cc Honda and Kawasaki boxes, and redesigned them to pass city driving standards. His fleet now consists of eight crazy-looking street bumper cars (culled from different amusement parks), all licensed to give your hottest ride a run for its money.

A couple of the cars can reportedly go up to 160mph, which seems awfully scary for a car with such a short wheelbase.

The only thing I would miss is watching the sparks fly from the ceiling!!!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Just Thinkin'

I'm not sure if you do this...sometimes I stop and look at something and kinda' go into a "Time Warp." I snapped this photo of Stromberg Carbs tagged and ready at a local car swap meet.

As I stood there checking them out, my mind drifted away..."If they only could talk, the stories they could tell of their previous life"...driving kids to school with the mom at the wheel, or maybe trips past Springfield, Illinois and Adrian, Texas on Route 66, or perhaps sucking as much gas as possible on the Salt Flats in Utah, or just taking dad to work every day. They now sit, waiting to start their next life.

Yep...what stories they could tell.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Top Gear Video

The Aston Martin V12 Vantage.

Kurt Gibson fellow blog follower and PCA National President sent me the link to this "Top Gear" video. He also sent along this message, "Stay with it...comments at 2:20 are sobering...better enjoy these magnificent machines now!"

The music, photography, sounds of the car are great...BUT...Although it's not a Porsche...it could happen to them someday. Check it out.


Tuesday, March 9, 2010

One Man's Junk

One Man's Junk is another Man's Treasure...so they say.

A week or so ago, Monique and I took off for a local car swap meet. This is what I found...but she wouldn't let me get it!!!... The perfect "Autocross" car!

This is a Citicar made by Vangard. The CitiCar was a small electric vehicle, first produced in Florida in 1974 in response to the mid-1970s fuel crisis. It was was a tiny golf cart sized and very ugly car that could go at a top speed of about 39 mph. Early versions had no extra features such as locking doors,(who would steal it?), or air conditioning. In 1976, enough CitiCars were produced to promote Vanguard to the position of being the U.S. #6 auto manufacturer after GM, Ford, Chrysler, AMC, and Checker (Taxis...), can you believe that? I don't think US auto makers were at their best about this time. Production of the CitiCar continued until 1977 with about 2,300 CitiCars produced. The CitiCar came in three models. The original Coupe was the smallest of the three. It had a flat diagonal front, a flat roof, and a flat nearly vertical back. Early coupes had a 2.5 HP motor and 36v battery pack.

Now all the little CitiCar needs, are flames!

Sunday, March 7, 2010

356 Roadster Restoration...Begins

Ahmet, our fellow blog follower just sent me some photos of his 1960 356 Roadster starting restoration. The Porsche Roadsters began in 1960 and production ended in 1962. This was the successor to the 356 Speedster that ended in 1959 with a few 1959 Convertible"D" cars as the go between the Speedster and Roadster. One of the big changes was the addition to roll-up side windows in the Roaster making it a more friendly car to deal with in the rain. However, just like the Speedster they were seen on the racetrack as well.

The restoration team in Istanbul.
The new door skin will be hand rolled in the shop.
Soda blasting and stripping the rusted floor boards out.
New floor boards welded in.
He'll keep us posted with up-dates along the way.
This car was imported back to Turkey from California.

Friday, March 5, 2010

356 Factory Tour...Part 1

This is Part 1 of 5 parts. I'll be posting the other parts as we go along. This is old footage taken at the Porsche Factory in 1960. The new 356 B had just come out with a new front and rear body look, the engine size was 1600cc and it still had drum brakes. This film has been floating around for some time now, but it's always fun to take a look back at how it was done "Back in the Day"... really built by hand.

Part 1 is about 10 minutes long...perfect for a rainy day!


Thursday, March 4, 2010

Wheelin' Through Life

Fellow blog follower Kaid Marouf shot this cartoon to me, I thought it was pretty cute since we as "Car Guys" spend so much time on wheels...then I started to look at it closer. Hummm... I almost hate to say where I fall in this order. How about you?

But I always have two sayings when I'm asked how old I am, "You're only as old as you want to be" and "The older I get the faster I was!"

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