The 60th running of Pebble Beach was, of course, appropriately spectacular, with competitors and regular spectators all agreeing that the quality was the highest it’s been for several years, or perhaps ever.
The sight of 12 Jaguar XKSSs (including the ex-Steve McQueen car) lined up as a special display on the 18th fairway – never seen before and probably never to be seen again – was as wonderful and evocative as you’d imagine. Special classes for the Ferrari 250GT SWB, Alfa Romeo 8C, for the centenary of Alfa Romeo and for 75 years of Jaguar lined the seafront, but it’s the sheer variety and quality of cars (and, for only the second year, motorcycles) that really keeps visitors coming back every year.
The Bugatti Atlantic chassis 57473, which was hit by a train in 1955, killing its occupants, made a rare public appearance, and it was great to see the legendary BAT 1 concept car on display for the first time since 1953, now fully restored, and a fine gathering of Ghia one-offs, including the gas turbine powered Gilda and the spectacular Desoto Adventurer II.
The line-up of Bonneville hot rods included many legendary machines, including the So-Cal belly tank and the Ralph Schenke Streamliner, nicely complemented by Burt Munro’s ‘World’s Fastest Indian’ streamliner over in the motorcycle class.
Best of Show could have gone to any one of a dozen entrants, including Peter Livanos’ Alfa 8C Monza, Arturo and Deborah Keller’s Bentley Speed Six Park Ward or Pebble Beach multiple winners Sam and Emily Mann’s Duesenberg J Graber Cabriolet. The eventual winner was Jim Patterson’s 1933 Delage D8S, just out of a two-and-a-half year rebuild with RM Restorations, making for RM’s fourth Best of Show.