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The following weekend Carol and I headed back up to Road America again for the Ferrari Club National Meet. Saw some wonderful cars and met a lot of old friends, but book sales were kinda disappointing. But maybe “those people don’t read.” Or maybe we just don’t charge enough for the Ferrari crowd. Lord knows the guy next to us selling $70 Ferrari T-shirts (they were nice T-shirts) was doing one hell of a business….
Got a quick weekend off for laundry & housework and then it was up to Road America once more for the ALMS pro weekend, where I signed books with the track’s 4-Mile Merchant gift shop and helped out with a little free-form color commentary on the PA with my buddy Ed Conway. Got to see a lot of old friends, including my old “pro” teammate and now multiple World Challenge Touring champ & Realtime Acura team owner P.D. Cunningham, World Challenge GT drivers Andy Pilgrim and David Murray, factory Corvette hotshoe Johnny O’Connell, John Doonan, the North American motorsports sparkplug for Mazda (I used to race against his daddy when he was in short pants) and vintage-racer-cum-Highcroft/Patron Acura LMP team-owner Duncan Dayton.
TRUE STORY: Duncan’s LMP1 entry (Scott Sharp/David Brabham) had been struggling all through practice and qualifying. So I gave Duncan a set of The Last Open Road decals (rumored to be worth a second a lap virtually anywhere) and guess what? He put them on and they won the damn race! In pretty damn dramatic, NASCAR-style green/white/checker shootout fashion, no less.
You could have them on your racecar, too, you know….

The following weekend marked welcome respite from the noise and hustle of the racetrack as I set up my books and EZ-up on the shores of Lake Michigan for the Milwaukee Lakefront Concours. My friend Kaye Kovacs (she and husband Tom run the famous Fourintune Healey/all-purpose Brit resto shop in Cedarburg, WI) had been bugging me to attend, and I’m glad she did as it’s a wonderful show in a truly lovely setting. Saturday is “club day” where all the various area car clubs come out to show off all their assorted prides and joys, and Sunday everything moves a notch or two upscale with the “serious” concours. Everything from old brass cars to classic Packards and Duesenbergs to more modern Corvettes and muscle cars to Astons, Jags and Ferraris and such plus the more plebeian but no less lovable MGs, Healeys, Triumphs, Alfas, Porsches, etc. My personal favorite was the complete, year-by-year lineup of Chrysler 300s. Don’t know what I’d ever do with one, but I really felt the old Car Lust heating up for a monstrous black 300G convertible with fins pointed out towards the sky.

Quite a show and a real sleeper event, and I recommend it heartily. Sold & signed a lot of books, too. And a surprisingly large number of The Last Open Road, so it seems there are a lot of car folks out there who have still not gotten the word (or at least have never gotten around to buying a copy). As you probably know already, The Last Open Roadhas recently returned from its seventh (!!!) hardcover printing and somehow continues to find new friends and readers all over the world. For which we’re very, very thankful. Pretty good for a manuscript that got turned down by damn near every publisher in Manhattan!

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