By Phil Skinner
Monterey/Pebble Beach week day three, Thursday...
Today started off very early making our way to Pebble Beach and the start of the Tour d'Elegance. This is where those beautiful cars selected to be displayed on the lawn this coming Sunday were able to strut their stuff. Response for this event has grown so big that the field this year had to be divided into three groups.
Led by an escort of California Highway Patrol's finest motorcycle officers, everything from an unrestored 1911 Franklin to a Ferrari Testarossa took part in a tour that included mountain grades, outstanding scenery, a great lunch and a victory celebration at the end of the run.
We were later able to sneak a peek at the cars set to cross the block at the Good & Company Auction this coming Saturday and Sunday and what a lineup of top-dollar cars, including the Clark Gable Duesenberg (pictured), where some estimates place its expected price to be in the $13-$15 million range!
For those who were looking for auction action during the day, Dana Mecum and crew set off with the first of three sessions and as we go to press, that sale is going strong and seeing about a 70% sales rate. Always hard to find just one favorite at a Mecum sale, we were drawn to a sharp two-tone green 1955 Hudson Rambler station wagon (below) that went to a new home with a bid of $19,500.
This evening, Russo & Steele kicks off the first of three auction sessions at its new waterfront location, and if all goes well, we will have more to report before midnight strikes.
Tomorrow more displays, Bonhams places its assortment of 97 cars on sale, the Quail Festival of Speed, Concorso Italiano, and the Rolex Monterey Motorsport Reunion all get into high gear. One of the joys of driving from venue to venue during this week in the Monterey area are the cars you find on the road -- only place you can be on the highway with a genuine Shelby Cobra in front of you and a Duesenberg coming up on your tail!