The first ever Palm Springs Desert Classic Concours d’Elegance took place this past weekend (February 29 – March 1, 2008) to the delight of more than 3000 attendees. Other Concours events around the country include the Pebble Beach Tour d’Elegance, which is one of the best known and was first held in 1950.
The term Concours d’Elegance is derived from the French, meaning a “competition of elegance”, in this case amongst owners of antique and exotic automobiles.
Judging is typically based on appearance and degree of restoration. Traditionally, the judging of automobiles invited to such exhibitions is executed by much more discriminating standards then for your usual car show. The very experienced judges examine each vehicle thoroughly, in its entirety, rating each component. “Like new” or “mint condition” is often not good enough to win in a Concours event. Concours-quality automobiles must have every detail brought to the highest degree of finish – from upholstery, paint and finish details to mechanical restoration. This attention to detail is mandatory. It’s not unusual for a Concours entrant to exceed, in show quality and perfection, the original condition of the car at its manufacture.
The inaugural Desert Classic Concours d’Elegance was held at the beautiful and historic O’Donnell Golf Course in the heart of the village of Palm Springs on two beautiful warm and sunny days. This year the featured Marque was Maserati, with a number of these cars being exhibited. The first Ferrari ever built, Chassis Number 01C, was among the more than 100 cars on display. Best of Show, also the People’s Choice, was a 1936 Delahaye 135 Competition, shown by Ken and Ann Smith of La Jolla, California.
Proceeds will benefit the Lucy Curci Cancer Center, College of the Desert, Animal Samaritans and Angel Light Academy’s Leadership Training Institute.