Cobble Beach Concours d’Elegance

My friend Jeff Millman and I left his home near Cambridge on a grey and drizzly Sunday morning, September 17, driving our Caymans. We headed north for our first visit to the 9th Annual Cobble Beach Concours d’Elegance.

This is the second year that Porsche has been a sponsor of this prestigious event. Porsche took full advantage to promote the brand, the 75th anniversary of Porsche and the 60th anniversary of the 911. There were new Porsches scattered about the picturesque site, including the 911 Dakar, which we saw close up at our own Concours d’Elegance at the end of August.

Other anniversaries this year: 120th anniversary for Buick, 70th for Corvette, and 60th for Lamborghini. The location on the southwest tip of Georgian Bay is spectacular, with the cars lined up on the greens near the clubhouse, and the somewhat stormy waters in the background. The weather did not cooperate in the morning, and the event was closed down for about 90 minutes for the thunderstorm to pass. There were some anxious moments with a helicopter apparently trying to stay ahead of the storm, which landed on one of the greens. The forced delay turned into an opportunity to socialize and study the excellent show program.

Once the rain subsided, the organizers did a great job to get the event back on schedule, we had time to browse the numerous food trucks for some comestibles, and settled down to photograph the amazing cars and chat with the proud owners.

Highlights for me: 

The cars from the Porsche Restoration Competition, including a 1958 356A from Saskatoon, a 1988 930 Turbo from Vancouver, and a 1989 930 Turbo from Calgary. 

In the Classic Porsche Pre-1983 Class was a delicious 1955 356 Pre-A in Adria Blue Metallic, a colour I had never seen. Also, a 1959 356A 1600 Super Convertible D, one of only 1,331 cars built by Karosseriewerke Drauz KG.  

In the Vintage Race Car class, was an amazing 1966 906 Carrera 6. This car was first raced at the Daytona 24 Hour in 1966, with a class win. Then it was campaigned in Europe where it had an overall win in the Targa Florio, with Herbert Muller and Willy Mairesse driving. The same car had another class win at the 1000 Kilometers of Monza, and was later raced by Bob Bondurant, Paul Hawkins and Jochen Rindt. Talk about pedigree… 

This was a well-organized and very well attended event, with lots of great cars appealing to a wide range of automotive tastes, in a very picturesque setting. In addition to the Concours on Sunday, there are events all weekend, including a Cars & Coffee and Concours d’Lemons on Saturday. Next year dates are September 14-15.
Highly recommended. </>

Story by Gerry Cornwell / Photos by Jeff Millman and Gerry Cornwell

Cobble Beach Participants Tour — by Wolfgang (Sonny) Lott

Friday morning – Sept. 15, 2023 – finally arrived! I’d been looking forward to the 9th Annual Cobble Beach Concours d’Elegance for months. This would be the second sponsored by Porsche Canada.

Today, the Participants’ Tour was on, and the weather promised to cooperate. Participating cars (cars that are exhibited in the Concours and on the Tour) receive a ribbon and a dusty under carriage will not be penalized on Sunday’s Concours. Also, if there’s a tie, the car participating in the tour gets the nod.

It’s always impressive to me, these immaculate, Concours-quality automobiles, driving along a 125 km tour. At 10:30 this morning, they’d leave Cobble Beach, head south into Owen Sound, then east on 26 towards Meaford. A scenic stop at Irish Mountain Lookout then on to Meaford Harbour for lunch.

After lunch they drive south to Grey Highlands, west to Chatsworth, north to Owen Sound and back to Cobble Beach. I’d be terrified of damaging the car. Oh, who am I kidding? I’d be terrified of the amount of cleaning and polishing required to get the car back to a show ready state!

These particpants know. Porsches are made to drive!

The Participants’ Tour is a rolling preview of the Concours. As I got to the clubhouse, I could see many of the entrants gathered (parked) on McLeese Drive. Since the Participant’s meeting wasn’t until 10:00 AM, I had about an hour to go look at the cars.

The absolute standout for me, was: The 1955 Porsche 356 Carrera Adria blue coupe. It would go on to get the 3rd Place ribbon in Class 6: Classic Porsche pre-1983. Just a stunning car!

The lead car, again this year, was (Show Chair and Founder) Mr. Rob McLeese’s 1970 yellow Porsche 911 Targa (which was not entered in the Concours). Got some photos of the Tour leaving Cobble Beach, and then, I trailed behind them, noting that people came out curbside, with lawn chairs, watching the automotive procession. As they turned off to Irish Mountain Lookout, I went on to Meaford Harbour to find a spot to catch them and photograph them coming in and while parked (as they had lunch there).

When they departed the Harbour, I returned to Cobble Beach to stake out my spot to catch them returning. 

The Participants’ Tour was fun and enlightening. Seeing these Porsches in motion – and seeing the spectators’ waves and the drivers’ smiles – was awesome.

Story and Photography by Wolfgang (Sonny) Lott

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