My Car Quest

May 28, 2024

Opinion: Monterey 2020 – A Return to Yesteryear?

by Wallace Wyss –

In the early 1970s I used to flog the 450 mile drive to Monterey when it was just a weekend, not a car week. Oh sure Steve Earle and his buddies like Chris Cord, would rent the Laguna Seca racetrack to run their Ferrari 250LMs, GTOs and Testa Rossas but there were no booths, no electronic scanning of your ticket.

Art by Wallace Wyss

Art by Wallace Wyss

Pebble Beach was already a little bit formal, I think it was $40 to get in (it is now more than 10 times that). The car events were considered just a little-more-than-normal weekend in Monterey. No bid deal, no motels charging five times more than normal. Not even auctions. Collector cars were owned by enthusiasts, not touted as investment grade commodities.

Now that Pebble Beach, Concorso Italiano, The Quail and other events have canceled this year I think for those who do venture to Monterey in mid-August it will be a return to yesteryear. Enthusiasts driving their roadsters, not worrying about a spot of mud, or having detailers on call to make sure everything’s concours ready.

Folks enjoying lunch outdoors watching sport cars go by. For younger than 35 year olds, if they go this August, it will be a little glimpse at what a simple joy collector car life was before The Big Hype.

Wallace Wyss art

Wallace Wyss painting of Pebble Beach, a Corvette bodied in Italy for Shelby. For a list of Wyss art, write

And y’know what? I think I’ll enjoy it. I’ll be in some sporty car, wearing my denims and a leather bomber jacket (with one of my paintings sewn on the back of course) and just walkin’, talkin’ and ogling, enjoying cars for their sensuous shapes and sounds, not what this market report or that one says it’s worth. Hopefully I’ll come back with three or four pictures that will inspire a painting.

Be there or be square….

Let us know what you think in the Comments.

THE AUTHOR/ARTIST: Wallace Wyss is the author of 18 automotive histories and co-host of KUCR-FM’s Autotalk. He is also a fine artist.

Wallace Wyss

Wallace Wyss

Opinion: Monterey 2020 - A Return to Yesteryear?
Article Name
Opinion: Monterey 2020 - A Return to Yesteryear?
Now that most of the Monterey Car Week big events have been canceled for 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic will we see an old time event weekend like before The Big Hype?


  1. Totally agree.. back to basics!

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