The Chicago Region SCCA at the 2021 Geneva Concours d’Elegance

The fourth weekend of August 2021 was a busy weekend for the Chicago Region.  Saturday and Sunday saw the running of the Kettle Moraine Divisional Road Race at Road America.  Also on Sunday the Region conducted its fourth “Concours for Sports Cars” as a featured group in the 2021 Geneva Concours d’Elegance.  If you haven’t attended the Concours you need to place it on your calendar.  If you made it to the event this year you weren’t disappointed.  The weather was beautiful, sunshine all day, and the spectators were engaged and enjoying the cars. 

The premise of the show is to celebrate the “Art of the Automobile” while strolling through the historic district of Geneva Illinois on the banks of the Fox River. The Geneva Concours’ mission is to “produce the best classic, exotic and race automobile event that showcases the heritage, artistic and engineering significance of the automobile in the surroundings of historic Geneva Illinois”.  That goal was met again this year with well over 200 cars on display ranging from a 1903 Ford “A” Runabout to a 2020 Ferrari 488.

Cars in the Display

This year the Chicago Region’s display had 30 cars entered, which included 9 race cars.  That list of nine included a 1967 Sunbeam Tiger, a 1972 Javalin AMX, two Austin Healey 3000’s a 1959 and 1960. The latter is headed to this year’s SCCA 2021 Runoffs.  If this car isn’t the oldest car qualifying to compete for the championship it’s one of the oldest.  There was a Ford-Superformance GT40 painted in the 1966 livery when Bruce McLaren won the 1966 24 Hours of LeMans.

Ford-Superformance GT40

We had a Ferrari 458 GT3 That won the Pro-Am class at the 2015 24 Hours of Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps.  A Panoz LMP-1 that finished in the top ten at LeMans three years in a row and was the winner of the 1999 Petite LeMans ten hour endurance race held at Road Atlanta driven by David Brabham, Eric Bernard, and Andy Wallace. That same year the car with that team of drivers won the 1999 American LeMans Series (ALMS) Manufacture and Team championship.  

Panoz LMP-1

Following this list are two trophy winners in the race car group.  Rick Dresang shared his 1973 Elden Formula Ford Mk 10B winning our Chicago Region SCCA Diamond Award recognizing a car that was historically significant to the history of the club or the sport. This car was originally owned and raced by the late Michael Argetsinger in the 1973 American Express Formel Ford Cup series, which was a traveling racing series Argetsinger helped organize across Europe that competed at Grand Prix venues as Hockenheim Germany, Nivelles Belgium and Zolder Belgium.  

Geneva Concours Carl Benz Award

The other winning race car entered by George Krass took top honors receiving the Geneva Concours Carl Benz Award an Award of Distinction, presented to the car that best fits the judging criteria of the Geneva Concours.  (The Benz Trophy is provided to us by the Geneva Concours, John Barrett.)  This car, a 2003 Chevrolet Corvette C5-R is a grand touring racing car built by Pratt & Miller Racing and Chevrolet for competition in endurance racing. The car is based on the C5 generation of the Chevrolet Corvette sports car, yet is designed purely for motorsports use.  This Corvette race car holds a true racing pedigree with notable competition successes.  In 2003 driven by Andy Pilgrim, Kelly Collins, and Oliver Gavin finished second in the GTS class at the 24 Hours of Le Mans.  This car also won multiple races in 2003 and 2004 in the American Le Mans Series. The GTS Corvette Racing Team were also winners of the AMLS Manufactures Championship in 2003 and 2004.

2003 Chevrolet Corvette C5-R

Buddy Palumbo Award

Additionally, seven other cars took home trophies.  Ron and Debbie Mahanke won the “Buddy Palumbo Award” presented by Burt Levy for their 1967 Mercury Cougar XR7.  This award is presented to a car that is maintained and driven by its owner.  

1967 Mercury Cougar XR7

Regional Executive’s Choice Award

The Regional Executive’s Choice Award, awarded to the car the RE choose as a favorite.  This award went to Bob Malm for his 1985 Porsche 911.  The next category for awards is the Excellence Award –Presented to vehicles that are outstanding, significant, and or aesthetically beautiful. The list of winners are;

Danial Samyn for his red and white 1960 Austin Healy 3000, just what comes to mind when you think of Sports Cars.

1960 Austin Healy 3000

Trudy Sutton for her 1971 Fiat 124 Sport Spider, this all original dark green roadster just sparkled.

Curt Bowland for his 1967 Sunbean Tiger race car, a perfect example of race cars from the 60’s.

Fred Cady for his 1952 Jaguar XK-120 Fixed Head Coupe, one of the most beautiful cars ever.  

Bill and Sheila Luxon for their silver World Class Motorsports UltraLite S2K Lotus 7 replica.  

Door Prizes

Burt Levy joined the Chicago Region on Campbell Street for the day selling books, clothing, and other items straight out of Finzio’s Sinclair back room. Burt was very kind and offered three books for a door prize gift to our concours participants.  The three winners were Claire Ball, George Krass, and Trudy Sutton.  If you haven’t already heard Burt’s new book “The 200 mph Steamroller, Book III, Out of the Mist” is now available.  Give Burt a call and place your order. 

So, if you missed this great event, there are still some Chicago Region events coming up.  But for a truly enjoyable day you need to push this event up to the top of you must do list.  Mark your calendars for the forth Sunday in August 2022 so you don’t miss out again.  Come join us in Geneva IL, on Third Street in the heart of Geneva’s historical downtown shopping district lined with shops, restaurants, parks and historical buildings. This event is open to the public at no cost making this a wonderful family event with something for everyone to enjoy and marvel.  If looking at spectacular cars isn’t enough for you and you would rather be talking to people about the cars in our display and our sport come join us.  Enter your sports car, or race car.  We already have four never before shown cars lined up for next year, don’t be left out. If you have a car you would like to enter send Steve Laske, at a note with the cars information and a digital photo.

2022 “Art of the Automobile”

The Chicago Region SCCA is looking forward to this very significant automobile event for next year, and truly hope you will be able to join us.  The Geneva Concours has taken place for seventeen years and regularly draws well over 200 classics, exotics and racecars.  The Concours organization is a Not-for-profit 501 (c) (3) organization promoting the “Art of the Automobile” to benefit the LIVINGWELL Cancer Resource Center, in Geneva, Illinois. The Chicago Region’s participation in this event also supports this benefactor.

Come join us, won’t you?