Let’s celebrate the 70th anniversary of the start of the fabled Pebble Beach Road Races round the pine trees on the Monterey Peninsular. This web site will be the focal point for the activities of the natural successors, the owners and drivers of many of the cars which raced there; this is the web site for the Del Monte Trophy Race Group which groups these race cars at the Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion every year (the 1947-1955 Sports Racing & GT Cars group) and which makes sorties to other circuits like Sonoma. The 2020 event was cancelled due to the Covid-19 pandemic, so the Pebble Beach celebrations have been held over to this year.
The plan for 2021… The Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance and the Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion, the two anchors of the Monterey Car Week, are developing activities in celebration of the first Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance and the first Pebble Beach Road Races. We are the Race Group connection between today’s Concours and the Laguna Seca Raceway. The Concours organizers have assembled all 5 of the Del Monte Trophy race winners as a 2021 Special Exhibition Class. These are the ex-Phil Hill Jaguar XK-120, the ex-Carstens/ Bill Pollack Allard J2, the ex-Sterling Edwards Ferrari Mondial, the ex-Phil Hill and Carrol Shelby Ferrari 750 Monza and the Mercury Baldwin Special. There will also be a large group of former Concours Best of Show winners. We will be working with Concours staff and Pat Phinney to create an Exhibit of significant photos of the Road Races from the Julian P Graham Archives which will be on display, during the week, at the “Turn 12 Restaurant” in Monterey. We are meeting with the Reunion organizers and will be working to support any projects that they decide to launch for this Celebration program.
Don’t miss our news updates here (click on News above) and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/MontereySportsCarRoadRacers. The list of cars and their owners was brought up to date in October 2020; click on Cars above (but we remain eternally grateful for details on any car and driver not yet featured (email material to [email protected] please).
Tatum, Jaguar, Kurtis, Ferrari. Noise, lights, action!
Rob Manson and his band of violunteers would like to thank all of the Del Monte Trophy Group & broader Race Group 5A participants for your commitment, enthusiasm and great car presentation. 2020 would have been the sixth year we’ve worked to improve the Rolex Monterey Motorsport Reunion experience for all of us and for spectators but the event was cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic (see NEWS). Each year we are granted our own row in the paddock and are thus able to lay out about 25 cars in a way that visually tells the story of the sports cars and specials that brought European-style road racing to the West Coast in the early 1950s. The spectators love it. It helps foster a community of friends with shared interests. Many of you displayed photos and other interesting period history. The organizers recognized our Row Q with the Best Paddock Display award in 2017.
We had 54 Entries in 2017 and 43 in 2018 and 2019. Entries included: XK 120 Jaguars, Allard J2s, Allard K2s, Big Engine Specials, a Kurtis 500S, Crosley & Panhard engined Specials, MGs, a Morgan Flat Rad and a Triumph TR 2; plus, as at Pebble Beach in the early 1950’s, several wonderful examples of UK/European exotica: the Lancia D24/25, C-Type Jaguars, an Aston Martin DB 3S, the Bristol Warrior, a Ferrari 750 Monza, MB 300 Gull-Wing SLs and Siatas. We worked to recruit grids that looked like the START of the Pebble Beach Road Races and to have races among similar cars within the Groups . The event’s live streaming shows that we nailed those objectives. The racing was pretty clean and the Group Steward didn’t have much to do! Thank you all for that! More importantly … we all got maximum track time while other groups struggled with black flag and full course yellow conditions.
We are everywhere during Monterey’s Car Week. We have a number of supporting activities that draw strong participation from our Group including the Alvarado Street Run and the Run over the Laureles Grade to lunch at The Quail. At The Quail … Colin Warnes arranged the exhibit of the two time Pebble Beach winning Cadillac Allard J2, in memory of it’s driver Bill Pollack and in support of our Run group. The Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance created a special exhibition Class for The Specials that Raced at Pebble Beach. Three of the six cars displayed on Sunday had raced in our Group on Saturday. Lastly, in 2019, we had a well attended wine and cheese get together on Row Q after Saturday’s races that was organized by the Nelson’s with help from the Specials tent and Vince Vento.
Since 2016, the Del Monte Trophy Race Group has established its place as a large, representative group of great early 1950’s sports cars with a strong community of enthusiastic drivers that we can look forward to racing with.
How would you like to see the Del Monte Trophy Race Group develop? Give us your suggestions please.
If you haven’t already done so, please send Rob Manson a 300 word description of your car, with a few of your favorite current and period track photos. Many of you sent those straight on to Marcus Bicknell [email protected], so we’ve got those. The Del Monte Trophy Race Group web site, www.DMTRG.com is intended as a Registry and a reference source to be used by anyone interested in our cars and the folks who race them. It will be brought up to date in the next 10 days. Great photos and in car video of our Del Monte Trophy Group at the 2017, 2018 and 2019 Pre and the Reunion come in from various sources, in particular, Colin Warnes, Lars Mapstead, Marcus Bicknell and Tam McPartland. Marcus is posting them all on the Del Monte Trophy Race Group page at www.facebook.com/hotrodroadracers. If you are not a Facebook regular you can still use the site. Just type in the address above.
Looking forward to the 2021 Reunion.
With best regards, Rob Manson and Doug Sallen