Palm Springs Show Turns Into Automotive Oasis

LOS ANGELES -- Palm Springs' Concours d'Elegance is shifting into high gear after only its second year.

In this month's Autoweek, Jay Engel mentioned the event in the same paragraph as the famed Pebble Beach Concours e'Elegance.

"The event drew cars from across the United States and Canada and is looking to be one of the premier concours in the country. More than once it was heard that the array and the quality of the cars on display might even rival the granddaddy of them all, the Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance."

That's high praise. Once the morning fog clears at Pebble Beach, a collection of the world's finest automobiles is unveiled.

In the desert, it was a 1961 Alfa Romeo SZ Code-Trunka coupe that wowed judges. The car was named Best in Show. It is owned by Scott and Courtney Gauthier of Scottsdale, Ariz.

It is one of 12 ever built.

Engel writes that the beloved Italian mark was surrounded by rare classics and memorable race cars.

"Among the participating entries were a fleet of eight Gurney Eagles, raced from 1961 to 1982, and rare classics such as a1937 Bugatti Type 57 Stelvio, one of the nine remaining 1940 Packard Darrin Convertible Sedans, and a pristine 1930 Cadillac V16 Roadster.

A fan favorite was the rarely seen 1948 Tucker Torpedo, No. 31 of 50, from the famous Pond Collection, and an immaculate 1942 Hudson Commodore station wagon."

Autoweek's Engel isn't the only automotive journalist who has noticed the event at the O'Donnell Golf Club

""By day's end it was clear that the Desert Classic Concours d'Elegance may well be destined to lie amongst the greats as a premier automotive event," wrote Motor Trend magazine's Rory Jurnecka after the 2008 event.

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