Cars n' Stars: Greg Moore Suspended, Bentley Debuts at Willow Springs, Concours on Rodeo

24 June 1998

Citing an "unjustifiable risk," CART Chief Steward Wally Dallenbach
suspended Canadian Ace Greg Moore for causing a first lap melee at the
Portland, Ore race last Sunday.  Involved in the first turn fracas were
Christian Fittipaldi and Michael Andretti.  Paul Tracy was placed on
probation and fined 20 grand for bashing Fittipaldi at Detroit the week
before.

A large contingent of Bentley/Rolls factory personnel converged on
Willow Springs Raceway, Lancaster, CA last week.  They showed west
coast press people 12 examples of their new, four-door, twin turbo,
$210,000 luxo hot rod.  The press drove on the highway and on the
track and all in attendance were impressed with the big 4.7 liter
cruiser.  A huge tent was rigged to hold the 70 souls and protect them
from the 40 mph gales that make Willow Springs famous. An actor
portraying H.A. "Tim" Birkin, legendary Bentley race driver of the 20s
told of his heroic deeds at the 1928 LeMans and how he stuffed the big
3 liter race car into a bank at "Arnage."  All the other Bentley
workers were attempting to hold the big tent on the ground. They
succeeded, and everyone hoped and prayed that the blowing sand would
not harm the finish of the other Bentleys on display . . . 12 great
examples of great Bentleys from the past.

Though there have been a couple of ALL Ferrari car shows on ritzy
Rodeo drive in Beverly Hills, CA, last Sunday's charity "Concours on
Rodeo" was the first real classic/vintage car meet.  The star of the
show was General (Ret) Bill Lyons' 1931 Bugatti Royale, valued at
around $15 million.  There were 75 vehicles on display, and such
luminaries as Carroll Shelby, Phil Hill, Bruce Jenner, John Clark
Gable, George Barris, Monterey Historics boss Steve Earle, Noel Blanc,
Ken Gross, Sandra Kasky and MotorTrend's Matt Stone judged them.  The
cars: Duesenbergs, Don Riccardo's 1927 Mercedes Benz K car, Don
Appel's 1941 Chrysler Thunderbolt, media mogul Bob Petersen's 1948
Tucker.  Other marks included Delahaye, Fiat, Hispano, Alfa, and a
brace of Ferraris being shown by Steve Tillack.  Neat show, and yes,
as always, Jay Leno made an appearance . . . this time with his 1909
Baker Electric. The title sponsor of the show was Chrysler Corporation
with an assist from Meguiar's car care products. Beverly Hills
Motoring Accessories impresario Andy Cohen co-produced the show along
with Jim Hull.

The LA vintage car weekend started off with a bang at the "It's a
Duesy" gala at the Petersen Automotive Museum, in a salute to the
Duesenberg line of cars.  The worlds finest Duesys were on display,
coming from private owners like Bill Lyons and the Imperial Palace
collection in Las Vegas.  Old Shel made an appearance, as did Pat
Boone, James Garner and other celebs.  Heckuva charity show, and the
display--according to Museum Director Ken Gross--will be at the Museum
all summer.  Be there!

Toyota is dropping production of the Supra coupe.  VW has sold 21
million Beetles over 21 years, and the Golf is at the 18 million mark.

According to Consumer Reports magazine, your best bet in used cars
today are 1990-96 Acura's, Audi A4, Honda, and Infiniti. It's based on
overall reliability.

Fox Cable Kids Network has signed a deal with NASCAR to air stock car
racing programs for the 2-11 year old set. France aims to get 'em young
and condition them to the NASCAR way.

In Indy Lights the Mears gang, Clint and Casey Mears, missed the Portland
race due to sponsor lethargy/finances.

NASCAR has just released a five-part video series celebrating and
documenting their 50 glorious years of slam-bam stock car racing. Each
volume is hosted by "The Coach," Craig T. Nelson of TV and road racing
fame, and they are priced at a very reasonable $14.99 each.  In the series
we have: Sincerely, Bill France, Fields and Towers, Good Old Gods,
Southern Exposure, and Inherit the Win. The complete set can be purchased
for $59.99. Call 818 560 1000. Buena Vista Pictures, Burbank, Calif.

Bill Maloney -- The Auto Channel

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