The Engines Were Revving

By Richard Mineards   |   October 19, 2021
Allen Grant’s 1963 Lola MK6 GT now valued at $25 million received the Armand Hammer Foundation Award (Photo by Priscilla)

Horsepower of a very different kind took over the Santa Barbara Polo Club when the 9th annual Montecito Motor Classic, with more than 200 exotic and luxury cars on display, was staged on the expansive fields.

“We could have had a great many more but had to cut off the applications given fire regulations,” says Dolores Johnson, founder. “But it is still an extraordinary collection of cars and marques.”

Nina Terzian, winner of the inaugural MCC Hat Contest, designed by Nina and Arlene Larsen (Photo by Priscilla)

The undoubted star of the show among all the Rolls Royces, Bentleys, Ferraris, Maseratis, Lancias, Porsches, and McLarens was a 1963 Lola GT Mark VI, the prototype of only three manufactured, which featured in the U.K.’s Festival of Speed at the 12,000-acre stately pile, Goodwood, owned by an old friend, Charles Settrington, 11th Duke of Richmond, a few years back.

“I’ve had innumerable offers for it, but would never sell,” says owner Allen Grant of Palm Springs. “Auctioneers tell me it could fetch as much as $25 million, but to me it is priceless. Absolute perfection.”

Other auto gems on display from Montecito residents included former Tommy Bahamas honcho Terry Pillow’s 1956 Jaguar XK140, Montecito Bank & Trust president George Leis’ 2015 Porsche 911, Dana Newquist’s 1932 Buick picnic car, and Robert Lieff’s Citroen.

The Best in Show award went to cell phone billionaire Craig McCaw for his Mercedes Benz 300 SL roadster, while KEYT-TV anchor C.J. Ward announced the innumerable other winners of the event sponsored by the Armand Hammer Foundation and the Montecito bank.

A hat contest, judged by Journal writer Lynda Millner, saw first prize go to bubbly Nina Terzian with a colorful floral hat and toy racing cars in the brim, created by Arlene Larsen of the Magic Castle. Rebecca Brand was runner-up, with both winners getting vouchers from jewelers Silverhorn.

Others checking out the stunning autos included Keith Hudson, father of singer Katy Perry, Ginni Dreier, Anne Luther, Monte Wilson, Hiroko Benko, Justin Klentner, Terry Ryken, Dana Hansen, Diana Starr Langley, Brenda Blalock, and Rick Oshay.

Monte Wilson and C.J. Ward with Mark Alfano, chief of staff at Armand Hammer Foundation, and his 1963 289 original Cobra (Photo by Priscilla)
“La Bestoni” built from a firetruck by Gary Wales (Photo by Priscilla)
John Fishpaw, Mark Halper (standing), Kat Halper, and David Alvarez beside Halper’s award-winning 1971 Porsche 911 (Photo by Priscilla)
Dawn Moore receiving her award for her 1959 convertible chevy corvette from Hiroko Benko (Photo by Priscilla)
The 2021 Montecito Motor Classic brought out throngs of people, as well as unique vehicles from all over the world (Photo by Priscilla)

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