Pebble Beach Week 2007: Concorso Italiano celebrates all things Italian

Click above image for big Concorso gallery of pics from Drew Phillips and Mark Steiman

We're still sorting through our photos and videos from last week's automotive fiesta around the Monterey Peninsula. Today's post is from the Concorso Italiano -- one of the largest annual gatherings of all things Italian. As it is every year, Concorso is "A celebration of Italian style," covering Italian music, cuisine, fashion and tourism, as well as those exquisite cars we all love for their passion. Held at Bayonet Black Horse Golf Course in Monterey Bay, it is a huge gathering of Italian cars and Italian car lovers.

Follow the jump for the rest of the story and a video clip from our friend Duane Steiner over at

Much more laid back than some of the other judged events during the week, Concorso is a bit like visiting that North Central cradle of legendary Italian automotive manufacturing around Modena. Long lines of every conceivable mark and model can make you feel like you are outside the factories as they ready their shipments for delivery. And the people are just as passionate about life and their vehicles as the workers who make them. We again ran into Lamborghini test driver Valentino Balboni admiring a Lamborghini.

We also saw dozens of Ferraris lined up -- and Lambos, Maseratis, DeTomasos, Alfas, Lancias, and Fiats. There were even acres of non-Italian cars in the corrals out front.

Owner after owner once again drove down between the grandstands to share their passion for their vehicles. And tens of thousands of admirers crammed the golf links to get an up-close glimpse of these exotic beauties. One of the cool things about Concorso compared to some of the other Monterey events is that it feels more like a car club meet than a true Concours.

It's very relaxed, with a picnic grove atmosphere at one end and a dance club at the other. Although all kinds of Italian culture is on display, there is always some kind of theme and a handful of featured classes. This year's Concorso paid tribute to 60 years of Ferrari, 50 years of the 250GT Cabriolet and California Spyder, 50 years of the Maserati 3500GT, and the 35th anniversary of the most famous flying doorstop of all time -- the Lamborghini Countach.

They even dragged the very first one out for the occasion, resplendent in a bright verde (right). There was also a very rare Miura Spyder (above) which looked better than new.

On a personal note, I began my Autoblog stint a year ago with coverage of Monterey. I find it fitting that my 1,000th post be this one about Concorso Italiano. I've really enjoyed the first year here and look forward to many more to come. As some of you might guess this is truly a dream job, working with such great people in a field that has always been one I've been passionate about. Thanks for keeping me in line and for all the words of encouragement and support.

The video meant to be presented here is no longer available. Sorry for the inconvenience.

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