Aircooled Porsche's from all over the world gather like mad to whatever new spot Patrick Long and the Luft team can think of. This year it was Universal Studio's Backlot. When the email first came in I was floored, thinking wow they really out did themselves. This was probably the most ambitious car "Porsche happening" ever.
After a long drive from the Bay Area the day before, to say I had a restless night is an understatement. Needless to say I got a couple hours of sleep and was out with my 1956 A Coupe before the crack of dawn, excited for the day. By just before 6am I was headed North to the Valley cruising a steady 80 miles an hour on the 405.
I was thrilled to be selected as a Storyline participant. We were set up along various locals such as New York Street, Wall Street, the Mill Valley town square from Back to the Future and many other iconic movie locales. Many others were set up along the Old West set so many famous movies were filmed in and around. There was so much going on and so many great cars to see, I actually only stayed in that small area the whole day. There was so much to take in!
This was a photographer's wet dream with so many photogenic opportunities around every corner. You just couldn't have a better setting. And as you can see in some of the shots, I liken it to a photographer's war zone with everyone fighting to get the perfect shot.
My two boys, self proclaimed "car guys" took in the sights with Grandma in tow. My oldest a veteran of Luft 3 and 4!
When the first Luftgekühlt happened 5 years ago in a Venice parking lot at Deus Ex Machina, most people didn't know it had happened. It may have been 30 cars. The next one came and went at the Bandido Brothers with maybe 50 cars. By the time I had heard of the happening in early 2016, Luft 3 was just a few months away. This time at the Modernica compound in Downtown LA. By this time it had taken off as one of the premier shows of the year and what looked like 400 cars showed up.
The draw for me has always been two things: 1. Meeting like minded Porsche guys, most of which are on the customize side of the fence or love to drag old cars out of barns and sheds and drive them as is. Or 2. as an opportunity to see the rarest of the rare race cars with extensive pedigrees, on the street and in settings not usually seen.
Taking it all in.
The day was certainly surreal. Imagine parking your car in front of the Waldorf-Astoria, walking a dozen feet and there's Paul Newman's Hawaiian Tropic Porsche 935 raced by the legendary actor in the late 70's. Turn a corner to the left and bam!, a factory Porsche 917 in Gulf livery right in front of you, ready to pounce...
just down the street and around the corner, running into my favorite Porsche Speedster "Testirosa", campaigned for decades by owner Bata Mataja — whom I got to personally meet and talk to! — across from a pack of Singer Porsches, the likes of which you only see in images.
From Gary Emory's street 1960 B that sat for 25 years and now sports a race engine (seen below) to son and master builder, Rod Emory's wild creation and ultimate 356 RSR build sporting a 450 horsepower twin turbo engine, the Emory's made a strong showing. Every car lined with immaculate race detail and patina-cool alike.
The amazing 1956 Porsche 356 Carrera GS above, sat right across the street from my own 56 and was none other than the "Ultimate Outlaw" built by Weldon Scrogham for Jerry Seinfeld. It sports a 4-cam RSK motor plus many other trick GT items.
Toward the end of the day a much needed rain cloud broke over the area and gave all a refreshing relief. Of course this makes for some great photo opportunities!
The 1963 below is a fantastic GT recreation, superbly done inside and out with lots of tasteful period touches. These cars were just a small sample of the vast numbers of cars that showed up that day, May 11th, 2019.
A very special thanks goes out to Patrick Long, Howie Idelson, Jeff Zwart and the crew at Luftgekühlt who all helped put this amazing event together for the aircooled Porsche culture at large.
Can't wait to see how they top themselves for the next one!
And thank you for visiting! I hope you enjoyed the imagery as much as I liked taking them and experiencing that day.
We’ll keep you updated.
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