More than 10,000 car enthusiasts, exhibitors and looky loos descended on Lacy Park on Sunday, June 11 to take in the burgeoning San Marino Motor Classic, which right before the community’s eyes took a giant step in both participation and reputation at the 7th annual version.
“It was over the top,” said San Marino resident Aaron Weiss, who along with Paul Colony and Ben Reiling founded the charitable event. “It was a perfect storm. There were more cars, more people. Every category was better and everything seemed to run very smoothly.”
And then, out of nowhere, “Next year’s show will be on June 10.”
One can’t blame Weiss for his optimism because anything that brings so many people together while raising such a substantial stake for charities should be duly noted.
Though the final numbers were not available at press time, Weiss expected the event to at least match last year’s $300,000 donation to charities which include the Pasadena Humane Society, San Marino Rotary Charities and the Trojan Marching Band. To date, the San Marino Motor Classic has raised $1.6 million for charities and will approach if not pass the $2 million mark when the final tally is recorded.
It was estimated that 7,000 attended last year’s show and anyone’s eye test would put this year’s crowd substantially above that number.
“I feel like we got better participation by the community,” Weiss told The Tribune. “We reached out further with our exhibitors and spectators and attracted a much larger group – which is good. Everybody seems to be happy and it went off without any problems.”
Weiss said he is looking to build in quality, not necessarily quantity.
“That’s the objective,” he said. “We have grown from a sleepy little local show to a fairly significant regional show. I spoke with many national collectors who said they would be back. I feel we are building momentum. We can only do better.”
On the field of play, a 1938 Delahaye Model 135 Roadster by Chapron received the ‘Best of Show Pre-War’ and an ultra-rare 1955 Mercedes-Benz 300SL Gullwing Alloy Body won ‘Best of Show Post-War’ from the panel of judges.
More than 100 vehicles earned class honors and other special recognition awards at the event, which also included a new category for Japanese manufacturers.
A 1967 Mazda R360 microcar won that class, which also included classics from Toyota, Datsun, and Honda.
The event featured a wide range of collector cars from Brass and Nickel Era to American muscle, hot rods and everything in between. Ferrari, Porsche and Mercedes-Benz were showcased alongside Jaguar, Alfa Romeo, Aston Martin and Rolls-Royce.
San Marino’s David SK Lee displayed eight cars, including a McLaren P1 GTR and 1964 Ferrari 250 GT Lusso Competizione, which was named the ‘Most Significant Ferrari’ at the show.
For a complete list of winners and for more information about the event, please visit www.SanMarinoMotorClassic.com.