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Automotive Photography Ramblings Road Trips

Our Visit to the 2010 Portland Auto Show

Nearly two weeks ago now, Shana and I made a day of the Portland Auto Show. We used to go every year to fantasize about new cars, but have missed the event in recent years. It’s fun to check out everything up close and personal without the hassle of a salesman crawling down you neck.

We started our day by hitting up the S2ki Forum Hillsboro Honda meetup for S2000 owners. I only got a couple of quick pictures but it was fun to finally meet some forum members I had met online numerous times but never connected with in person. Great job getting 30 cars to come out in the middle of winter Ira! Check out all the pictures on S2ki.

We were fairly rushed at the meet because we had an appointment after that to check out a used Infinity QX4 for the missus. Looked promising in the pictures, but was a little too rough for us. We’re actually having a pretty tough time finding a suitable car for Shana because we’re so used to enthusiast vehicle shopping, which usually results in clean and documented cars to shop for. We were thinking of going with a more dependable Japanese variant, but they’re just not cared for like the European rides we’re used to looking at. Now we’re thinking of going back to European shopping in the form of a Land Rover Discovery. We’re back in Portland this weekend, so we’ll probably stop and look a few then.

Then it was on to check into our downtown Portland hotel, Hotel Lucia. What a beautiful place and fantastic service! Not to mention it was in the center of everything we had planned and easy Max trip to the Convention Center for the show. Can’t wait to stay there again!

After freshening up, it was on to the Portland Auto Show. Tickets were reasonably priced at $10 and at the ticket window we were reminded that many major manufacturers were not there due to cutbacks and slow sales. This was a bummer as BMW, Saab, Mercedes, and many others were definitely cars we were looking forward to jumping into.

{warning: really crappy images ahead. I’ve been too busy to post-process these but wanted to put up what I had.}

Ron Tonkin brought out a few new cars and a couple older ones from his collection. These were all front and center outside the main conference areas:

Ferrari Daytona Spyder Ferrari Enzo Maserati Ferrari F430

MotoCorsa was also in attendance with the latest Lotus and Ducati offerings. The black Sport 1000 was exactly like the demo bike I rode a couple years back.

Lotus Evora Silver Lotus Elise Ducati Sport 1000 Aprilia RSV4

Then it was on to the Audi and Porsche areas. I have to admit, I wanted to check out the Panamera because it looks so bad in pictures. It didn’t disappoint, it’s ugly and HUGE! First the blasphemy that is the Cayenne and now this abomination. So sad that a more true to spirit business model couldn’t have been used to get them into the 21st century.

Audi Rings

Audi Q7

Porsche Panamera

Porsche 997 Turbo

The local SCCA chapter also had a nice area set up. There were several car corral areas that usually aren’t present, likely due to so many manufacturers pulling out this year.

Porsche 996 race car VW Beetle Race Car Porsche Moby Dick 935 Race Car

And here are few more random snaps. You’ll notice how crowded Saturday afternoon was. I think every Dad in town got babysitting duty as there were lots of kids running around. Reminds me that we prefer going on Thursday mid-day when it’s super quiet!

After the show we met up with our good friends Danno, his wife Angie, and our close friend Julie who also happened to be in Portland that day. We had a fantastic dinner at Mother’s Bistro just a few blocks from the hotel. What a meal! Plan on leftovers no matter how big your appetite is!

And by chance, another friend of ours was in town for a whirlwind 48 hour tour, my close friend Ed. He lives in Atlanta now, but amazingly we’ve managed to meet up several times in the past few years. We met for a nightcap at Pazzo and then stumbled upstairs to crash after a very long day.

We’re heading back up to Portland for a wedding at Edgefield this weekend. That makes about 4 trips up there in 5 weeks. Maybe we should get a condo!

dc

Categories
Automotive Ramblings

The Paul Frere Article That Turned Me On To Alpina

I’ve been meaning to make this post for a while. I spotted this scanned article on VWVortex over the holidays and it’s been on my to-post list since then.

Fujimi Alpina B10 Biturbo Model KitMy Dad was always a Road & Track reader when I was growing up, and he used to bring home his latest issue after a business trip for me to read. I vividly remember this March 1991 issue because soon after I read it, I went down to Trump’s Hobbies in town and placed a special order for the . I painted it black on black because I have no skills building models and it turned out awesome! I wish I had a picture.


Paul Frere
was a fantastic writer and an accomplished race car driver. He was well respected in his field and here are some of his quotes from the article:

[…] but the 535i-based B10 Biturbo is surely the most impressive of them all: a comfortable 4-door that blends Rolls-Royce silence with Testarossa performance, with road manner to match.

The B10 reached a maximum speed of 181 mph. At such speeds, the car feels entirely stable, with no suggestion of the front end getting light or any tendency to wander.

Thanks to the low inertia of the two small turbo chargers and to the electronic wastegate control, response is nearly immediate n al most any circumstance.

Ever since reading that article I’ve wanted to have a real Alpina. I’m going to have to keep an even closer eye on the classifieds having reread that article again! Please feel free to leave a comment with your Alpina experiences!

Here are a few e34 Alpina videos for you to snack on tonight:

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Categories
Automotive Motorcycles Ramblings

Steve Hislop Onboard at Isle of Man TT 1994

Check out this fantastic lap ridden and narrated by Steve Hislop aboard an RC45 in 1994:

I love how he talks about that first section and how he normally hits 170mph through there on a flying lap! This is such a strong reminder that I need to visit this event in person sometime soon… I mean how much longer can such a bad ass and dangerous event continue to run like this?!

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source: Hell for Leather


By the way, have you been by Rare SportBikes For Sale recently? It’s been great having a co-author and we’ve found some beauts this summer. Stop by and say hi!

Categories
Automotive Ramblings

Pictures from the Start Line of the Monte Shelton Northwest Classic Rally

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6780_619064911988_19710368_36481035_4288835_nThe Monte Shelton Northwest Classic Rally is an event I’ve wanted to become more knowledgeable about for a long time. My wife and I were on the coast probably 6 or 7 years ago and saw a line of classic cars heading down 101 with the Monte Shelton number plates on the sides, and I knew that some day I’d like to participate.

This year we planned to be in Portland for the start of the event to take see what it was all about. I was pleased to find that while some of the cars were in fact very valuable and rare collector cars, there were also many other vintage cars of varying rarity and value. It truly looks like an event for well prepared cars and individuals with a passion for driving in the Pacific Northwest. The event also serves as benefit for the March of Dimes which I thought was a nice touch as well.

I’ve never done a TSD rally before, but it looked like there were plenty of first-timers at the event and the morning meeting promised no surprises. And for those not interested in competing, there was even an opportunity to simply follow the route for fun and join everyone at the checkpoints.

I look forward to getting an eligible classic sometime soon so I can participate too. In the meantime, here are the pics outside start/finish line in Downtown Portland:

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My full gallery is here (348 pics!):

And I stumbled onto this YouTube picture gallery as well:

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Categories
Automotive Ramblings

LaVelle Vineyards Summer Club and Party European Car Show

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This past Sunday was the first LaVelle Vineyards European car show hosted by Sports Car Shop. It was a fantastic afternoon affair on the slopping lawns surrounding the tasting room outside Elmira. Good company, great cars, and delicious wine made for an easy formula that attracted over 40 cars on display and lots of enthusiast onlookers.

Here are my pictures (snapshots really) from the show. Can’t wait to go again next year!

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