2009 Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance - Click above for high-res image gallery

Since it was first held way back in 1950, the Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance has developed into the world's greatest celebration of classic automobiles. Like they say at the Emmies, it's an honor just to be nominated. That definitely holds true at Pebble as well, as only the most beautiful and rare cars are invited to participate. That's probably why they had competitors coming in from 30 states and 19 different countries, including Hong Kong, Argentina and Australia. Altogether there were about 200 vehicles in 28 classes in this year's field.

While the 1937 Horch 853 Voll & Ruhrbeck Sport Cabriolet that won "Best of Show" at the 59th Annual Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance seemed far and away the most beautiful car at the event, that didn't keep us from noticing about 200 other incredible vehicles parked around it on the 18th fairway at Pebble on Sunday.

And Pebble is about way more than just the car show. There are dozens of supporting causes and attractions around the Lodge and Links, with proceeds from the various raffles, auctions, sponsorships and gate receipts generating more than $1 million for charity again this year. One of the most entertaining charity events every year is Jay Leno's stage appearance, where he helps raise money through various live auctions. This year he helped California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger sell his signed bomber jacket for a whopping $30,000.

The cars at Pebble are grouped in classes, with several featured marques and themes every year. This year there were special displays honoring Bentley (which also had the biggest representation in the field), Zagato, and the centennials of Bugatti, Audi and Morgan. Motorcycles were also displayed for the first time this year. The class consisted of British bikes built through 1959. Other highlights were a special gathering of Ferrari TR59s and 166 Barchettas, Silver Arrow race cars, Stirling Moss race cars to celebrate that legendary driver's 80th birthday, and even a Porsche class that included a 917 and a 908/03 Spyder owned by comedian Jerry Seinfeld. It was another great year, and we can hardly wait for that third Sunday in August 2010, when Alfa Romeo and Pierce-Arrow will be among the makes honored. Until then, please enjoy our gallery of images from the 59th Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance.

Related Gallery2009 Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance
BentleysFerrari TR59sAuto Union Type DJerry Seinfeld driving his award-winning Porsche 908/03 SpyderBentleys1949 Ferrari 166 MM Touring Barchetta1931 Bugatti Type 51 Dubos Coupe1914 Stellite Two Seater

Photos copyright ©2009 Drew Phillips, Frank Filipponio / Weblogs, Inc.