3 women of all ages, two Scottsdale citizens and one particular from Paradise Valley, will join around 50 common car owners Jan. 22 at the fifth Arizona Concours d’Elegance at the Scottsdale Civic Middle.
Concours d’Elegance – French for “competition of elegance” – is special to Scottsdale’s Laurie Florkiewicz and Kelly Whitton as nicely as Janet Cussler of Paradise Valley.
All 3 are intensely concerned with caring for their collections.
About 100 basic autos will look in the curated and judged function, and close to 4,000 ticketed spectators, members, visitors, VIPs and media are anticipated, mentioned Paradise Valley resident Ed Winkler, the party co-founder and co-director, with Scottsdale’s Chuck Stanford Jr. Both equally are perfectly-recognised vehicle collectors.
“The Arizona Concours d’Elegance is a celebration of the world’s best collector autos in mode of the Pebble Seaside Concours in California, Amelia Island Concours in Florida, Concorso Villa d’Este in Italy and other entire world-popular concours occasions,” Winkler claimed. “We’re fired up to be back.”
People of north Scottsdale for 25 many years, Laurie and Budd Florkiewicz are having a 1949 Alfa Romeo and a 1939 Delahaye, decided on by the variety committee following traveling to the couple’s Scottsdale showroom.
Their 28-car or truck collection features American classics, vintage European and off-highway motor vehicles.
“We have pushed several of them in rallies, like the Copperstate 1000, Copperstate Overland, heading to the Sunshine Rally and private rallies with pals,” she stated, noting that she also drives through the functions.
She’s also acquired cars and trucks at the auctions and by cellular phone.
“My 1964 turquoise Thunderbird looked so great beneath the lights at the auction,” she recalled. “I purchased it simply because of the nostalgic period and the motion picture ‘Thelma and Louise.’”
Her beloved? A birthday existing one particular 12 months from Budd was a 1957 Mercedes–Benz 300 SL. “I right away set ostrich seats in it.”
A 16-yr resident of McCormick Ranch, Whitton has been the motor vehicle selection supervisor for about a 12 months at Sunchaser Motorsports, owned by observed Paradise Valley collector Invoice Pope.
The about 60-car assortment fills two properties in the Scottsdale Airpark, from the earliest, a 1914 Rolls-Royce Silver Ghost to a 1971 Maserati Ghibli. Although this is a private selection and not open to the community, Pope has made use of it to host compact fundraising occasions for nonprofits.
At the Concours, the Pope collection will be represented by a 1952 Lancia B52 Aurelia PF200 Spider and a 1949 BMW-Veritas.
“Lancia has been manufacturing technically state-of-the-art, outstanding highway and racing cars due to the fact 1906,” she said. “The rear wings showcased lengthy fins that lengthen past the tail of the auto, and the pair of triple exhausts could have easily been mistaken for machine guns.”
Whitton’s tasks involve overseeing the in-household preservation and servicing of the vehicles and a handful of long-phrase restorations projects.
She also manages the day-to-day operations, which includes two full-time automotive experts, researches the vehicles and handles the logistics obtaining the automobiles and Pope to/in many excursions, rallies and concours.
“I have on quite a few hats,” she stated, “and take pleasure in each and every a person of them!”
Whitton moved to Arizona when she was 8 and graduated from Horizon Higher School and the College of San Diego, with a diploma in Intercontinental Relations and Art Background. In Washington, D.C., she lobbied for a smaller relatives-operate agricultural firm in Texas, then moved to South Korea, wherever she taught English for six several years.
In 2005 she returned to Arizona and labored for the Men’s Arts Council of the Phoenix Artwork Museum coordinating their unique activities, these as the yearly Bell Lexus North Scottsdale Copperstate 1000 by this event, she met Pope.
Her automobile passion started out as a boy or girl.
“I always thought of myself a ‘car woman,’ but it was not until I commenced performing for the Men’s Arts Council that I recognized I was far from the car or truck lady I thought myself to be. My passion for and information of vintage automobiles truly made. It was a steep, steep finding out curve, but I knew following my to start with Copperstate rally that this planet of classic cars was exclusive and this is in which I belonged.”
Janet Cussler met and married automobile fanatic and writer, Clive Cussler, in 2005. After his the latest death, Janet has remained in Paradise Valley with his service dog, Duke, and her daughter, Whitney, who joined them from the East Coast in 2020.
Though continuing to run her “one-horsepower” equestrian business enterprise nationwide, Whitney also manages the Janet Cussler Vehicle Assortment, which includes 45 basic and classic vehicles and a hearth truck that was the “star” of one particular of Cussler’s publications.
In spirit with the aerodynamics theme of the concours, the two women will be exhibiting their 1959 Cadillac Eldorado Biarritz.
Through the 12 months, they routinely take part in excursions, attend vehicle exhibits, auctions and concours in and outdoors the region. In addition, they are extremely energetic in the Arizona automobile group and with philanthropic assignments.
“Women have been a driving force considering that the inception of the auto,” she stated, citing Bertha Benz, spouse of Carl, who is commonly credited as the inventor of the automobile.
Unfamiliar to him, she drove her household in the 1st internal-combustion-run automobile in 1888, a journey that is viewed as 1 of history’s fantastic auto journeys.
“You would be shocked at the improvements that ladies have created to the structure and ease of use of the car,” she mentioned.
Do she and Whitney sense excluded from the male-dominated environment of car or truck-amassing?
“No,” Cussler reported. “There has never been everything but a shared desire and enthusiasm that transcends gender and age.”
“If you glimpse about the room at any auction, when that particular auto comes up on the block there is frequently a lot more than a single woman who has her hand in the air,” she extra.
“We as females are in a one of a kind position to encourage and rejoice the auto. The love of the motor vehicle has no limits.”
Scottsdale Arts spokesman Brian Passey said his organization’s pairing with Concours is a very good in good shape.
“The people from Concours provide their automotive expertise, deep adore of automobiles, contacts in just the automotive planet and expertise in formerly presenting the party, though Scottsdale Arts gives its artistic skills, celebration-administration abilities, internet marketing methods and information of presenting large-scale occasions in Scottsdale,” he mentioned.
This yr, the Concours concept is “The Artwork of Aerodynamics,” with collectibles from the earliest streamlined autos, which include considerable race automobiles, early horseless carriages and pre-war classics to sports and competition automobiles from Europe and the U.S. and a display class for modern day supercars.
Tickets are obtainable on ArizonaConcours.com and ScottsdaleArts.org/situations/ or the Scottsdale Arts box business at the Civic Middle. Tickets are constrained. Standard admission is $100. There are also early entry and platinum VIP tickets accessible.
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