My Car Quest

June 21, 2024

I Am Happy I Was In Monterey

by Mike –

Every year in mid-August after I return home from Monterey I think how much bigger, more expensive and more crowded Monterey Car Week has become; and how it starts earlier every year. It was once a weekend event and now it is a week long series of events. Every year I think “maybe we’ll will skip next year”.

But we go back; last year we brought two cars to The Quail, the year before we brought three cars to Concorso Italiano, the year before that two cars to Concorso Italiano, this year my wife and I drove the Iso Grifo (as every year for the past four years) the 80 miles to Monterey and took it to Concorso Italiano (only one car this year, the Bizzarrini stayed home).

If you were there and saw a red Iso Grifo driving around there is a very good chance it was us.

1957 Aston Martin DBR2

1957 Aston Martin DBR2

During the week I had an on going email dialog with my friend and fellow Bizzarrini lover, Ken Phillips, who lives in the Eastern part of the US and not 80 miles from Monterey like we do.

Below is a note from Ken Phillips,

I wish I was in Monterey. Every year way before Pebble Beach I think–“Been There Done That”– lots of times. Stop everything I am doing or supposed to be doing here. To and from airports here and there. Rental cars (of course I could just pick up my motorcycle that is kept there), strange places to eat and sleep. Massive effort to get from auction to auction and to Laguna Seca.

Having long cold motorcycle rides between Carmel and Hearst Castle. Loud, stinky old cars at the track. Terrible.

Wish I was there.

I love the people: old friends, new friends and total strangers. The great cars are great too.

1955 Maserati A6 GCS Roadster

1955 Maserati A6 GCS Roadster

This year I went to the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance for the first time in a few years. I have stayed away because of the traffic and parking. I found a way to solve that problem. I have two friends who had cars at Pebble Beach this year and one of those cars was featured on a commemorative Pebble Beach jacket (the Porsche 901 Prototype) that I had to have so I went for the jacket and stayed for everything else.

We will be back next year. I am happy I was in Monterey. If you have never been then you must put it on your list of things to do.

You cannot do all of Monterey Car Week, there is limited time and so much to do and see. Enjoy what you are able to do and don’t worry about what you can’t get to. Plan ahead, decide what you really want to do and do it. Leave some things to chance – that can be fun too.

See you there soon I hope. Until then enjoy some of my photos in the slide show below.

More photos from the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance are here.

I Am Happy I Was In Monterey
Article Name
I Am Happy I Was In Monterey
If you were there and saw a red Iso Grifo driving around there is a very good chance it was us.


  1. Great photos. Thanks Mike.

    There’s a thread on Alfa forum questioning the judging during the last show. This is the link:

    Be interesting to hear your thoughts.

    Thanks, George.

    • George, I don’t know much about Alfa history but the comments in the link you posted are in direct contradiction to what the Pebble Beach Car Guide says about this car; “It (this car) started Alfa Romeo’s motorsports heritage, finishing first in class in the Coppa del Garda.” The car…is shown here in its early racing configuration.”

      Maybe another reader knows more?

  2. Mrisogrifo says

    Well it was my first time at Monterey Car Week and I found it absolutely fantastic. Where else could you see such a wide variety of world class cars in one locality at the same time. So much to see and do. The Pebble Beach Tour d’Elegance was amazing with close access to the cars and drivers. Concorso was good although there were a lot of modern cars interspersed with some great classics. And then there was Laguna Seca classic racing which was amazing with world class cars racing hard, plus there were all of the auctions as well. If you have never been to Monterey then you should do it! You will meet a lot of very friendly people who are passionate about cars. I am “very happy that I was in Monterey” and will be back next year!

    Pete Lyttle

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