After receiving a phone call from Simon Lane, my old sales manager at Porsche Centre Hatfield to come along to the annual Porsche Club concours evening I decided to give it a go.
I ran Porsche Centre Hatfield for 26 years until I retired a couple of years ago, and was delighted to invite the Club to our first concours held on site in 1986, so I thought it would be nice to go back in a slightly different capacity, as a guest rather than an organizer/worker.
What with having a few personal distractions over the past year my 993 hadn’t had much use so I thought the run would do it good.
There was a surprisingly good turn out – there must have been 70 + cars on display.
Maybe the decent weather helped, or maybe it has something to do with the significant improvement in old Porsche values over recent years – not sure.
In the early days of my involvement with the Club the profile of car ownership was very different from today.
On arrival last night, I drove past beautiful 991’s, 997’s, new model Boxsters, Cayenne Turbos, 997GT3’s, 996 Turbos, 930 Turbos, 356 Cabrios, 994 Turbos etc. etc.
I then saw Terry Perry, the hard working Regional Organiser from the Club and in between taking me on a drive in the glorious Club 356 ( which I had pre booked ), he sort of talked me into entering the concours.
In another blog I described why I bought my 911 and also why I believed this 993 model was the best of all 911’s – ever.
My decisions at the time were heavily influenced by our two senior technicians at Hatfield, Gary Barnes and Del Smith, who both carefully examined the car and said it was a great car mechanically and I that should go for it.
I then asked Alex Andrea the MD of Fastlane Paint and Body Shop, our Porsche Approved Repairers to cast his expert eye over the car. Alex gave the car his “all clear” in terms of having had any previous major repairs etc., and he too felt it was an extremely honest and original example.
After I bought the car Fastlane carried out all the cosmetic bodywork and paintwork for me and without doubt their work was exceptional.
Even today, some 4 to 5 years later, it just takes a good polish to restore the car to near new condition.
Sometime later in the evening, after the judging had finished but before the awards were announced, Ashley Millar from the Club, walked past and whispered in my ear something like “I wouldn’t go home just yet Perry” – so I wondered what the heck he meant.
The judging categories were age based, going up in decades. Simon won a class award with his lovely 80’s 911 sport (also a Fastlane paint job), but my car didn’t feature in the 90’s models, so I did actually think maybe Ashley was “having me on”.
All the age group awards were presented and then finally the announcement was made for the car which was the overall “Best Porsche”:
Terry Perry’s announcement was just like the Oscars “and the winner is … Perry Robb’s 993 Cabrio!! ”
Mike Murphy, the affable Hatfield Centre Principal presented me with the trophy, which I had had made from a Porsche brake disc and calliper many years earlier, and I must confess I felt very proud.
What a great product still to be associated with and what a superb location for this event to be held.
You never know, I may even be back for the 30th Anniversary of Hatfield hosting this event next year!