Kicking off Car Week at Concours on the Avenue in Carmel

Attracting a diverse and desirable selection of predominantly post-War classics, the laid-back Concours on the Avenue in Carmel-by-the-Sea was the perfect start to what promises to be another jam-packed Monterey Car Week. Rémi Dargegen reports…

I’ve been to California for Monterey Car Week a number of times, but this was my first time at Concours on the Avenue. It turned out to be exactly as I’d envisaged: a relaxed and friendly concours in the centre of picturesque Carmel-by-the-Sea that sowed the seeds of excitement for the rest of the week. 

There was a really nice mix of mostly post-War cars in attendance, with classes dedicated to classic Porsches and Ferraris, American hot-rods, and British sports cars – think Mustangs and Corvette Stingrays mixing it with American Woodies, Ferrari Lussos, Aston Martin DB4s and Porsche prototype racers. 

A particularly impressive assembly of the latter formed the category for cars that best represent the spirit of the nearby Laguna Seca circuit, won by a gorgeous ex-Works 1967 Porsche 910 with race-winning provenance. 

Other favourites of mine included the Ferrari 365 GTC/4 resplendent in bright orange (a shade K500 discovered was called Arancio Vaguely Noble, after the famous racehorse), the Martini Racing Lancia 037 and the Jägermeister-liveried Porsche 934. 

Overall ‘Best of Show’ was awarded to the unusual OSCA MT4 1100 Coupé – an exquisite and desperately pretty Vignale-bodied coupé, which was presented exactly how it raced at Le Mans in 1952 in the hands of Dr Mario Damonte and Fernand Lacour. A deserving winner. 

Concours on the Avenue is a really pleasant event. It’s small and open to the public (think shorts and flip-flops rather than panamas and double-breasted jackets) but the setting, cars and jovial atmosphere cement its place on the Car Week calendar. The appetite for classic cars is well and strong on the Monterey Peninsula – bring on the rest of the week.

Photos: Rémi Dargegen for Classic Driver © 2019 

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