Concours Corner

By Chris Erven & Jeff Erven NNJR Concours Chair

The third judged concours event of the season on Sunday, Sept. 11, was hosted by NNJR member Frank Bogyos at his beautiful Wingspread Farm. As we drove up the long driveway, we were welcomed by two rows of American flags in honor of the victims of 9/11. Frank’s home was also draped in American flags and banners. Even the concours awards were adorned with patriotic elements. The awards presentation started off with a moment of silence to honor those affected by the events of 9/11. Event preparation started on Saturday morning when Frank, Jeff, and I braved the heat and humidity and began our set up for the following day. Frank rewarded our efforts by taking us on a sweet corn-picking expedition in his field. This was my first time picking corn, but for Jeff this brought back memories of his childhood and growing up in the farmlands of Pennsylvania. That night a welcome cold front moved through, which made for a cooler but windy day on Sunday and everyone had to fasten their seat belts to keep from being blown away. We had a great turnout with about 30 beautiful and well-prepared entrants. There were also numerous Porsche vehicles on display from members who just came to see what concours is all about. Six-year-old Luke Carvalho even brought out his Power Wheels GT3 RS. This won him the special award of Future Concours Winner. His father, Paul Carvalho, displayed his beautiful red 996, which received the Concours Chair Choice award. The display of Dennis Thovson’s 1993 RS in the race car class was a treat for everyone. Marlys had a smile ear to ear from her enjoyment of a ride in the car. Walter Sliwa’s GT3 and Lake Underwood’s 356 Speedster were so well prepared that its hard to believe that both vehicles had actually seen time on the track. The masters class was very well represented with several pristine vehicles. Only 1/10 of a point separated first place winner, Steve Kroeger, and his 1997 silver 911 and second place winner, Murray Kane, and his black 1992 911 turbo. Kevin Fitzsimmons has spent a lot of time and effort this season preparing his 1997 911 and it shows. He was rewarded with an excellent third-place finish. His competition needs to watch out as his car improves with every event. Class P7, which is all 911’s from 1999 to present, had a record turnout with 10 entrants. The judges had a particularly difficult job in this class as all scores were extremely close. Several event judges commented that their job gets more difficult at every event as the quality of all vehicles improved greatly over the season. This is a testimony to the hard work and effort all participants put into preparing their vehicles for the concours events.
After a busy summer with my two boys, the back to school rush came all too quickly for us.  My oldest son, Jake, who is 11 years old, was ready to start middle school and basketball, while my 6-year-old son Luke was starting first grade and has no interest in sports. So, finally, I ask him, “what do you want to do for fun?” to which he replies, “I want to go for a ride in your Porsche.” That’s when I knew I had a partner for the concours.  It was time for Luke’s very own red Porsche 911, complete with MP3 player and LED interior lighting.                                              It was a beautiful Sunday morning as I headed to meet my friend Gary Renna at Sky Manor Airport for breakfast at the Sky Cafe. I parked my 2003 red 996 next to Gary’s beautiful 1995 yellow convertible 993, and this was just the beginning of a memorable day. I followed Gary to Asbury, NJ to participate in the September 11 Memorial Concours d’Elegance at Wingspread Farm, the home of NNJR member Frank Bogyos. Upon arrival I greet a row of showstopping Porsches on display.  I expected a great Porsche day and time with friends and my family, but it
was much more. I entered my car in the competition and wandered around looking at all the amazing cars, including Murray and Akemi Kane’s 1992 black 911 Turbo and my friend Tom Jensen’s 1993 dark green 968. I felt like a kid in a candy store.  Finally, my wife Suzana arrived with Luke’s GT3 in tow. Luke went for a ride, Jake helped me keep the 911 spotless while my wife sat on the banks of the Musconetcong river, also on Frank’s spectacular property, relaxing and enjoying a much needed break.  Chris & Jeff Erven, the concours chairs, arranged to have an amazing hot buffet lunch served. Meanwhile the judges gathered to hand in their final scores, as trophies waited to be claimed. As each award was presented, followed by photo ops in the winners’ circle, I enjoyed seeing the smiles on each winner’s face, but the best smile was Luke’s as he was handed the P7 Kids Class Award. The competition had come to an end, or at least I thought it had, when I hear my wife trying to get my attention. The final award was being presented, and I hear my name being called for the Concours Chairs’ Choice Award.  What an unexpected surprise, considering the deducted points for my Paul’s Garage logo decals (shameless plug), I came out a winner. For some, cars are a hobby, for me they are my life.   As the countless Porsches drive away, some with trophies, but all with smiles, Frank invited Luke and me to go for a ride in his all terrain field vehicle where we picked pumpkins and corn.  Could this day have been any better? I’m thankful for sharing such an amazing day with friends and family.  Thank you Frank Bogyos and Raine Ferner for the hospitality and opening your home to NNJR-PCA. Thank you to all the judges, thank you Chris & Jeff for putting it all together, and I’d like to officially welcome my son Luke to the Porsche family. You’re in for the ride of your life, a few miles at a time. CONCOURS