Photos courtesy of Mr. Jerry Brubaker    
     Le Mans and Rolex 24 racecars are the marathoners of motorsport. Since 1949 the 24 Hours of Le Mans has been the nursery of the sports- prototype concept typified best by the 1949 Le Mans-winning Ferrari 166 MM barchetta, wearing svelte coachwork by Touring. Ferrari's first Le Mans winner will be featured in Amelia's Trophy Cars Class.
     The prototypes of Le Mans, Daytona and Sebring have become faster, supremely reliable and more aerodynamic, shoving the boundaries of automotive technology to new limits. And they have played a pivotal role in the career of our 2016 Honoree, Hans Stuck.

     The prototypes of Le Mans, Daytona and Sebring have become faster, supremely reliable and more aerodynamic, shoving the boundaries of automotive technology to new limits. And they have played a pivotal role in the career of our 2016 Honoree, Hans Stuck.
     Stuck's 1986 Sebring winner will be in the Cars of Hans Stuck Class at Amelia this year. Thirty years ago the red, number-5 "Coke machine" driven to victory by Stuck, car owner Bob Akin and Jo Gartner, limped to Sebring's checkered flag on three wheels after the left front wheel fell off during the final lap: it was a bizarre "first" in international endurance competition. At the checkered flag it didn't matter; the red #5 Porsche 962 that will be at Amelia this Sunday still managed to win by eight laps..
     At Le Mans two years later another of Stuck's Porsche 962s raised eyebrows and seemed poised to make motorsport history. At least that's how the weekend started. Stuck destroyed the Le Mans qualifying record by five eye-watering seconds, and that led to Porsche's first one-two-three sweep of Le Mans qualifying.
     The 1988 Le Mans became a brawl between Porsche and Jaguar. In the end it was resolved in Jaguar's favor by just 194 yards with Stuck, Derek Bell and Klaus Ludwig second in the pole-winning Porsche 962 -- one of the final ten factory-constructed 962s -- now owned and displayed at Amelia by Henry Pearman. Had Porsche known that the leading Jaguar was crippled (running very gently with a broken "one-speed" gearbox!) a change of strategy for the #17 Shell Porsche could have turned Le Mans' record book inside out with Stuck's co-driver Derek Bell joining Jacky Ickx as a six-time Le Mans winner and logging Porsche's 13th overall victory in the seminal French endurance classic.

     A 1988 Le Mans victory by Pearman's 962 would have also seen Stuck and Bell joining that exclusive club of triple-consecutive winners that began in 1930 with Bentley's Woolf Barnato.
     "What might have been" is a subplot woven through several disparate and eclectic classes of the 2016 Amelia Concours d'Elegance.Nearly 20 per cent of Pegaso's total production of 84 cars will be on Amelia's 2016 field. None more bizarre than "el Dominicano", the bubble-top coupe built totally in-house in Pegaso's works for Dominican dictator Rafael Trujillo. Formula 1 technology plus leading edge engineering and styling made the Pegaso Z-102 the most exotic car in the world and the rarest gem of the European post-war exotic car renaissance.
     Across Amelia's field and closer to home, the dream of designer Rust Heinz, heir to the Heinz pickle and catsup fortune, manifested itself as the Phantom Corsair; a streamlined shape betraying young Heinz's marine architecture training. Powered by the Cord 810's Lycoming V-8 engine and front drive technology, the Corsair wowed Hollywood starring as the "Flying Wombat" in MGM's The Young in Heart "the Car that Thinks for You". Only one was made. Heinz died in a traffic accident near his native Pittsburgh in a more unimaginative vehicle. His Corsair passed from owner to owner, including comedian Herb Shriner, before restoration and, again, attaining star status at the National Automobile Museum in Reno, NV.
     "Diverse doesn't begin to describe Amelia 2016," said Bill Warner, founder and Chairman of the Amelia Concours d'Elegance. "We let our passions shape Amelia, so the field has a unique flavor that even hard core racers tell us they really love."
     Buick's new Avista concept car will make its Florida debut at Saturday's (March 12th) Cars & Coffee At The Concours presented by Heacock Insurance.
     Ed Welburn, General Motors' Vice President of Global Design, will drive Buick's new Avista concept coupe onto the Cars & Coffee field when the no-charge show opens at 9:00 a.m.
      Cars & Coffee at The Concours features over 400 cars from local car clubs including, among others, BMW, Corvette, Ferrari, Lamborghini, Maserati, and Porsche .
     In just three years, Cars & Coffee at the Concours has developed a hard core "car guy" following, yet it also has a strong family and father-son vibe. The field opens at 9:00 AM Saturday March 12th.
     "Concept Cars, what we once called Dream Cars, especially the cars of GM's famous Motorama, have been an important part of car lust since the 1940s." said Brian Webber, Executive Director of the Amelia Island Concours d'Elegance and co-founder of Cars & Coffee At The Concours . "So, we're really pleased that Ed Welburn himself is bringing the new Buick Avista concept car to Amelia for its first public showing in Florida."

The 21st Amelia Island Concours d'Elegance tickets are going fast.  Don't miss out.  Visit  to purchase tickets to the various events occurring at and around The 21st Amelia Island Concours d'Elegance.

About The Amelia Island Concours d'Elegance
Now in its third decade, the Amelia Island Concours d'Elegance is among the top automotive events in the world. Always held the second full weekend in March, "The Amelia" draws over 250 rare vehicles from collections around the world to The Golf Club of Amelia Island and The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island for a celebration of the automobile like no other. Since 1996, the show's Foundation has donated over $2.75 million to Community Hospice of Northeast Florida, Inc., Spina Bifida of Jacksonville, The Navy Marine Corps Relief Society, Shop with Cops, and other deserving charities. The 21st annual Amelia Island Concours d'Elegance is scheduled for March 11-13, 2016. For more information, visit


Amelia Island Concours d'Elegance
3016 Mercury Road
Jacksonville, Florida 32207
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