356 CLUB OF SOCAL CONCOURS
Any event promoter in his own right will concur that selecting a proper venue will make or break a car show. Stating the obvious, an aesthetically pleasing site is a must; but size matters, too. You donʼt want it too small, right? Then again, not too big either, as it might result in the vehicles appearing to be ʻlostʼ on the grounds, thus ruining the meetʼs whole vibe.
By most accounts, the 356 Club of Southern California had found the perfect compromise for their annual Concours, thanks to a large expanse of grass – a section of a park in the city of Dana Point. It welcomed a few hundred vintage Porsches, driven by a bunch of enthusiastic owners who could enjoy the view of the Pacific Ocean, too.
But following the 2016 show (the 30th), club members got word they could not use the venue anymore, hence they went on a hunt for an alternative. It turned out to be another nice park in Huntington Beach, with hills and winding roads, as described in Classic Porsche No.48.
Guess what? The same gloomy scenario took place after that event! So, for 2018, the 356 Club settled on what appears to be the ideal site, the Bella Collina Towne and Golf Club in San Clemente. The coastal community, the Southernmost city in Orange County, sits at equal distance from Los Angeles and San Diego, about 60 miles each way. Well-known by the surfing community for its waves, another claim to fame for the city is one of its former residents, Richard Nixon, who purchased an estate there in 1969 a few months before the Watergate scandal.
Publicised as ʻthe largest 356-only fully-judged concours in the worldʼ, the 356 Concours can be certain to attract a large pack of enthusiasts due to its reasonable participant admission price, while visitors enter the grounds at no charge. Other vintage Porsches are invited to join the festivities as well, resulting in about 400 vehicles sharing the lawn, though 356s represent the bulk of the entries.
The show competition revolves around three main classes, ʻFull Concoursʼ, ʻStreet Concoursʼ and ʻWash & Shineʼ, depending on how much partakers want their cars to be scrutinised by the panel of judges. We should comment on the top job performed by the 356 Club, which neatly organised the field based on models and production years –
it made for great photo opportunities.
As you might expect, a handful of ʻoldiesʼ made the trek to San Clemente, in the shape of several Pre-as and even a rare ʼ55 Continental, a 356 version specific to the US market. Herb Wysard also drove his most impressive 1952 GlöcklerPorsche Special, which is featured in this issue. It was great to catch up with a few other friends, too, including Pascal Giai and his ʼ58 Speedster, seen on the cover of Classic Porsche #5 in 2011. The tub has changed a bit since, adopting hubcaps, side mouldings and more – we love it.
Visitors additionally enjoyed a fantastic squadron of 356 outlaws, personalised in a variety of ways, starting with sometime exotic powerplants. Among them: several 2.5- and 2.6-litre four-cylinder Polo motors based on 911 engines, beautiful pieces of engineering. Speaking of outlaws, the area designated to 911s and 912s gathered a number of them, with Kurt Zimmermanʼs mighty 300bhp 912/6 coming to mind – see Classic Porsche #16.
It appears that the 356 Club has finally found a worthy successor to the Dana Point park, with another verdant yet different venue in San Clemente. Keep in mind that the show takes place in the summer, so it could make for a nice vacation destination in 2019. Just saying… Check out 356club.org for further information about next year ʼs affair!
Above, left and right: The outlaw gang ran a variety of hopped up engines – a 2.5litre Polo motor in the case of the Speedster Below: We love the look of these aluminium wheels – Rudge replicas manufactured by HRBB!
Bottom: Here is a rather unusual but good looking combo: a 356A equipped with later 356C wheelsBelow right: ‘NO COPY’ says the licence plate of this ’58 Speedster, in the hands of the same owner since 1978
Clockwise from top left: You’ve got to love the simplicity of a 1953–54 Cabriolet, fitted with ‘turbo’ wheel trims; John Laur is a Porsche show regular, having purchased his ’56 convertible 46 years ago; Yes, we were fooled by the patina… This is a convincing 550 Spyder replica!; The one-day meet gathered no fewer than three early ‘soft window’ Targas; Dave Eck’s 911 sunroof coupé looks excellent with its fresh ‘Rennsport’ lettering; The crowd enjoyed a handful of rarities, such as this pair of 1953 356 Pre-as
Below right: Humberto Baca owns a fleet of air-cooled cars, including this Rudge wheel-equipped ’59 ‘A’
Below left: Our friend Pascal Giai has recently changed the look of his ’58 Speedster, a lovely car