The Montecito Motor Classic

By James Buckley   |   September 19, 2019
Argentinian polo player Sebastian Tkacik with Jim Harris's 2018 Ford GT; behind them is the Polo Club condominium complex (photo: Alma Rose Middleton)

The annual Montecito Motor Classic, going into its eighth year, has officially outgrown its Coast Village birthplace and has moved to the larger venue of the Santa Barbara Polo & Racquet Club, 3375 Foothill Road, Carpinteria (805-684-6683). Without the move, it’s safe to say, there would have been no car show this year. Damage to the Coast Village Circle service road caused by the January 2018 mud-and-debris flow was extensive, so the route has been closed to through traffic for two months of needed resurfacing. Due to that construction, Coast Village Road could not have hosted the car show.

Scout, a four-and-a-half-year-old gelding that polo player-horse trainer Jenny Alter rescued and trained to do tricks, bows down before this stunning 2004 Enzo Ferrari (photo: Alma Rose Middleton)

The show at the Polo Club is scheduled for Sunday, September 22 beginning at 9 am and running until 2 pm. At 3 pm, the regular Sunday polo match begins, so those attending the car show can simply move over to watch the game at no extra charge. The car show, by the way, is also free; if one wants to park on premises, there will be a charge of $10 per vehicle, but parking will be free along Foothill Road. Note to self: if you get there early, you won’t have to walk as far.

This year’s theme is “Supercar Designs & Legacy Milestones,” featuring one-of-a-kind or a small handful of cars made by Lamborghini, Ferrari, Porsche, and others. Mike Hammer of the Armand Hammer Foundation, chief sponsor of the show, explains that “something over and above what would be normal, like a Bugatti with 1100 horsepower,” would be a “supercar.” So, just know that what will be on display and what you’ll be seeing are the best of the best, the rarest of the rare, such as, for example, a Ferrari Enzo Bugatti Veyron.

2019 Santa Barbara Teen Star Sofia Schuster will be on hand to sing the National Anthem at noon. Included in the festivities will be a children’s section in which Sam Freeman has designed five different car models that snap together (rather than glued) and kids of all ages will be able to assemble them there. The late Hollywood car customizer George Barris’s Batmobile, designed for the 1966 television debut of Batman, starring Adam West and Burt Ward, will make an appearance, as will another TV car, David Hasselhoff‘s high-tech (for its time, circa 1982) K.I.T.T. car featuring its witty and self-aware artificial intelligence. The car was supposed to be bulletproof, fireproof, could jump, talk, inflate its own tires and reach speeds upwards of 300 mph fighting injustice, but you’ll have to use your imagination to witness such feats; many other special vehicles will also be on display. The Petersen Automotive Museum in Los Angeles will be a critical factor, bringing up many of their more popular exhibits, Monte Wilson will emcee, and a large food court made up of a variety of food trucks and a large McConnell’s ice cream pavilion will take center stage.

A) (from left) Santa Barbara Police Officer (retired) Greg Hons is Executive Director of the Police Foundation; with him are Michael Hammer of the Hammer Foundation, Dolores Morelli Johnson of sponsor Million Air, Sergeant Eric Beecher, and Michelle Meyering with PAL (polo players in left background are Shannon McGraw and Sebastian Tkacik from Argentina) (photo: Alma Rose Middleton)
This 1970 Camaro is just one of the many “muscle cars” on display at this year’s Montecito Motor Classic (photo: Alma Rose Middleton)

In addition to the cars in categories from “Pre-War Domestic & Foreign,” “Modified Street/Custom,” “Hot Rod,” “Modern Muscle,” to “Preservation” and more, there will be performances by police dogs and their handlers, and SWAT demonstrations as well. “It’s going to be a car show-picnic-and-polo experience,” Hammer promises. All proceeds of this event are dedicated to the Santa Barbara Police Activities League (PAL) and the Santa Barbara Police Foundation.

Beverlye’s Bounty

I Can Do This, Living with Cancer, was Beverlye Fead‘s first book, and the one that kicked off her second (third?) career. Nana, What Is Cancer? was Beverlye’s second, written with her granddaughter, Tessa Mae Hamermesh. I apologize for the error.


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