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Why major concours need to have a Restomod class ASAP

Discussion in 'General Automotive Discussion' started by bitzman, Jan 14, 2021.

  1. bitzman

    bitzman F1 Rookie

    Feb 15, 2008
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    EDITORIAL: Why Major concours Should have a Restomod Class




    I think the pandemic has changed the audience for concours, but have no proof of that. Let's say granted most attendees are over 50, a good many past 75. Even after we have the vaccine, some may demur attending the events they always used to go to.
    So I say add something that will appeal to a younger demographic--a class for restomods.
    Now exactly what is a restomod? An old looking car with updated mechanicals, interior and trim. Sometimes it happens by accident, you start to restore a car and then you can't resist changing things to more modern solutions--better brakes, better electronics, better seats. Maybe better engine and gearbox.
    Now isn't this antithetical to the raison d'etre of concours--to honor something original? True. But there are times when you buy or inherit a car where too many of the original parts are gone, but you still like the lines of the car so you update it. Or you want better handling, better performance, better braking, more modern instrumentation.
    But there's a downside to a restomod. Maybe you don't want to show it at the Pomona Fairgrounds as a custom but at a concours. You spend a lot of money making your car your way, only to find the fanciest concours say "we don't have a class for modifieds." So you can't show it off.
    I say every on of the big concours should create a restomod class, but have standards that prevent just any street corner hot rodder from entering. The car should, for example, have 90% of original body panels.
    I think the Rivolta shown here is one example. Another is the E-type roadster built by Chip Foose, the famous customizer. True some E-type fans probably growled a "authentic E-type was debased" when he built that but I say Chip's car offers a glimpse into an alternate reality, the way the E-type might have evolved had it stayed in production longer or what it would look like if Jaguar brought it back?
    In order for concours to generate income (and many of them donate money to charities) I would also allow customizers the opportunities to buy booths to show another of their restomod creations, providing it is a car that would be qualified for the restomod class.
    Another reason I'd like to see it is that some low production cars, like the Iso Fidia sold in Detroit a few years ago for $13,000 are "homeless" in that the owner can't afford to have the missing trim made. But if there were a restomod class , they could mix and match and use parts from other cars to finish it and maybe even visually improve the styling.
    I think all those who love certain marques should get used to this idea--keep the stock cars in the stock classes and create a new class so the restomods could be over with their brethren. I think those who have modified their stock car's styling would be happier there. I remember seeing a customized Ferrari 365GTC/4 at Concorso Italiano , and as a purist, I was scandalized. But if there would have been a modified class that the car was in, I could have gone over there with different criteria. I could look at it and say "Oh, I see what you're trying to do here."
    Most importantly, concours planners have to recognize that time moves on. For example, 1920s cars on the road are few and far between, and the people who grew up with them are already in their 90s, so I say new classes should be instituted at the rate of one or two a year, even now covering cars to up the '70s (already 50 years ago!)

    Bruce Meyer , a well known collector nd co-founder of the Petersen museum--did convince Pebble Beach to have a hot rod class one year but I think that took a long time to convince them. Restomods are more like original cars --at first glance--so i think concours would be more amenable to showing them than '32 Ford hot rods.
    And so it is. Forward this to your local concours and see what they think. This pandemic has changed the way society thinks, and events will have to change and broaden their appeal in order to survive....




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  3. BJK

    BJK Formula 3

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  4. Rifledriver

    Rifledriver Two Time F1 World Champ

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    #3 Rifledriver, Jan 15, 2021
    Last edited: Jan 15, 2021
    Pebble Beach and Amelia Island already have done it but like many things they do its not an annual feature.

    The problem you have is a concours is a competition against a standard, an established standard. A hot rod or resto rod is a free form design based on the sense of style of the creator. It was intended to defy the standard. It is a very important part of the car world and there are many shows and venues already dedicated to them. Far more shows and venues than there are real concours. That is their place.

    As for the pandemic I fail to understand your conclusions. The only effect so far has been cancellations of events due to restrictions preventing attendance.
     
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  5. Rifledriver

    Rifledriver Two Time F1 World Champ

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    #4 Rifledriver, Jan 15, 2021
    Last edited: Jan 15, 2021
    Those come more under the heading of Rat Rods, not Resto rods. There are already good venues for those and a concours isn't it. They have a huge annual event already. It takes place every night in the parking lot of the Nugget Casino in West Wendover Nevada and every day on the salt at Bonneville all Speed Week long.
    Everyone who is anyone in the world of Rat Rods is there.
     
  6. BJK

    BJK Formula 3

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    Those are NOT rat-rods. 'Derelicts', 'Rusto-rods' or $275,000 Vintage Resto-rods maybe, but not rat-rods. No whiskey bottle/beer can decor here. ;)



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  8. Rifledriver

    Rifledriver Two Time F1 World Champ

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    Whatever. Certainly are not resto rods.
     
  9. bitzman

    bitzman F1 Rookie

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    The misspelling and dusty looking cars in the replies are driving my suggestion down the wrong track. I said RESTO MOD meaning , by my definition, a painted shiny car that looks almost stock from a distance, but might have minor body changes and as much as a new frame, new drive train, modern interior, etc. n even better example is Ian Callum's Jag Mk. 2. When he retired he had it built as a retirement present for himself. Since he was a Jag designer I am sure, if he displays it , he'll have a crowd around as he explains the update. (article on it here Ian Callum's Jaguar Mark 2 - The New York Times (nytimes.com)Those raggedy on the outside ones are resto-rods that could be mistaken for rat rods. I would say the Iso Rivolta shown here is the prime example of what I am talking about. When you go down the rusty body road, at the end of that road is a junkyard. Pebble wouldn't go for that.
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  10. Rifledriver

    Rifledriver Two Time F1 World Champ

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    That didn't drive it down the wrong track. Your lack of understanding of a concours and its participants vs an interesting part of the car world in resto mods is what is on the wrong track.
     
  11. bitzman

    bitzman F1 Rookie

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    I know what a concours is; I have reported on them for 50 years. I have been a concours judge; I am just trying to think beyond the pandemic. We will be in a different world. Things can't be done the old way. I predict as much as 20% of the old audience won't be coming so the events have to be updated to draw in new segments of the car enthusiast community to make up for the shortfall.
     
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  13. technom3

    technom3 F1 Veteran
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    It will come back.

    In my opinion restomods isn't the way back personally. I think q custom class is cool but there are many many other places for these kinds of shows and respectively prestigious awards.

    If the concourse crowd wants more people... They need to attract more people.

    I get the snootyness of it all... I do. The people and the class involved is upper echelon and you are either in the bubble or out...

    But ya better find a way to get more in your bubble.

    You had better reach out to the youth and train them and entertain them.

    How about some more driving or some more performance events.

    Let's get some something more interactive than cars parked on the grass with 300 dollar golf hats.

    More must be done. Owners must get involved. Builders need to get involved.

    Time to pay it forward for the sake of the hobby.
     
  14. Rifledriver

    Rifledriver Two Time F1 World Champ

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    And I guess there is the general assumption that is not being done.

    Well maybe if more who talk and write about it were involved they would understand that is all being done already. There are respected trade schools dedicated to auto restoration and we have junior judging programs exactly because so many younger people are not only interested, they are involved. We have fully qualified judges ready to be on their own on the field but not used because in the eyes of many entrants they are too young to be taken seriously.

    I have worked with many younger people who are very enthusiastic and we spend a lot of time mentoring them.

    Many other points made here are in some form or the other underway but I am not free to address them but still in many ways fixes are being proposed for things that are not broken.
     
  15. technom3

    technom3 F1 Veteran
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    I'm really glad to hear that.

    The reason why I make that assumption is because I participate in some concourse events. Not as much as other but have fielded a car etc... I am active in the classic car community but to be honest not overly social. But I absolutely participate... I'm a younger guy and I buy and sell classic cars all day long.

    Yet I don't know of any programs nor have ever been approached to help or participate anything.

    Now this can be all my fault because I'm not overly social etc... Buy I can tell you this I hear about my cars extended warranty alot more than I see an email from any groups or organizations.


    I guess having said all that... If those programs exist... (I'm not calling you a liar or anything near that it's more rhetorical ) then I think they need to work on their outreach.

    I'm glad people like you exist to help push the hobby forward!
     
  16. Rifledriver

    Rifledriver Two Time F1 World Champ

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    #13 Rifledriver, Jan 19, 2021
    Last edited: Jan 19, 2021

    Outreach? I do not advertise. Why? I have more business offered than I can handle. I have to assume they are in a similar position. Or possibly because I have no exposure to areas that are productive for them to advertise. I am not 17 looking for an auto restoration trade school.

    Now in terms of their involvement in our programs, there is plenty of outreach.

    Also I am speaking of nation wide. Not local events.
     
  17. technom3

    technom3 F1 Veteran
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    I'm sorry I'm not speaking directly of you out reaching. I'm saying these programs aren't doing enough out reach. Or these companies... Etc... Not speaking of you specifically. I apologize if you took it that way.

    Well I'm telling you from a participant... I know little to zero about these programs so I would say at least on a fund raising side they are missing the mark on outreach
     
  18. Rifledriver

    Rifledriver Two Time F1 World Champ

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    #15 Rifledriver, Jan 19, 2021
    Last edited: Jan 19, 2021
    https://www.mcpherson.edu/autorestoration/


    Fund raising? For what? For the most part the shows are commercial enterprises that operate on fees from entrants or attendees or club events paid for by the club and sponsors.

    What other fund raising would there be?

    And as far as attendance goes. I was at a local car show last weekend. I'd guess several hundred people were there. When travel restrictions are lifted I susect there will not be a problem. No need to reinvent the wheel. If adjustments are needed we can address it then but it is premature for radical changes
     

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