’32 Auburn Best in Show at Wheels & Wings fest
GYPSUM — Local Tim Ludwig came to Wheels & Wings Festival looking to win the custom motorcycles division Saturday with a Harley Chopper he restored himself.
He left with the award, as well as a new car.
The seventh annual car and air show doubles as an auction, and when Ludwig realized he could leave with a ’78 Lincoln Town Car for less than $4,000, he put in the winning bid.
“It was the longest car in the auction,” Ludwig said of the Town Car, which measures nearly 20 feet in length. “That’s why I bought it.”
He also got a chance to talk to its previous owner, Gypsum local Ken Hoeve, who purchased the car last year at the Wheels & Wings Festival show for $5,000.
“It was just too big for me to store,” Hoeve said. “So I had to take a loss on it. I did love having it, though.”
BEST IN SHOW
Best in Show in the cars division at the 2016 Wheels & Wings Festival went to Davis McCann for his 1932 Auburn.
McCann, of Parker, said since finishing the restoration on the car this summer — an eight-year process — he has entered it into three car shows and won two, including Saturday’s.
“This is only the third time it’s been shown,” he said. “It’s fresh fresh.”
Best in Show in the motorcycles division went to Robb Talbot for his 1956 Taurus 200 ss, formerly owned by renowned photographer Guy Webster.
“I first saw it in 2001 and I’ve been chasing it up until four years ago when I finally got it,” he said. “I was dreaming of adding it to my collection and it finally came into my collection in 2011 or 2012. It will not be sold again.”
The marquee brand featured at this years Wings and Wheels event was Corvette, and Warren Trapp of Ridgeway won Best Marquee with his 1954 Corvette.
“I bought it in 1962 for $950,” he said. “I drove it all through college, it was my college beater. For a long time, these things didn’t hold value at all, in fact in 1954 they had to destroy the last third of the production because the president of (General Motors) didn’t want unsold cars.”
In a cosmic coincidence, Trapp’s $950 purchase took place in Bloomington, Illinois, which would become the home of the Bloomington Corral, now known as the Bloomington Gold, which started in the early ’70s and grew to become biggest Corvette event in the country by the ’80s.
“It’s odd that this car is sourced from there,” McCann said. “I saw it in a little ad in the Chicago Tribune, they probably paid about 25 cents for the ad. They wanted $950, and my dad and I went down there and paid $950.
Event director Ed Abramson said the Corvette was a perfect choice for the marquee car at this year’s event.
“You can always count on Corvettes to show up,” he said Saturday. “There were so many beautiful cars out here today.”
For some, the thrill of the auction was tantamount to being behind the wheel of the cars it featured. Craig Held, of Eagle-Vail, found himself in a bit of a bidding war over a 1987 Porsche two-door coupe.
“My wife said buy it, so I went for it,” he said.
Going back and forth with another bidder, “it really got my adrenaline going,” he said.
In the end, he won the car, with its original paint job and near-perfect interior.
The auction took place in Hangar No. 3 at the Vail Valley Jet Center. Abramson said the cooperation with the jet center in allowing the use of the facilities was part of the reason the event has become so successful in the seven years it has now been running. Next year, however, things might get complicated.
“Right here where we are,” Abramson said from Hangar No. 3, “they will be concreting the entire area, and we will not be able to use the jet center, which is rather disappointing. However, we will put on a show, and we will certainly keep everyone informed. We’ll have answers as to what we’re going to do, and when we’re going to do it, probably before the end of the year.”
If you missed the show but want to see the cars, then many of the participants will be bringing their automobiles to the Vail Farmers’ Market & Art Show today starting at 10 a.m.
The valley’s commercial and residential property markets are similar in some ways — availability is tight and nothing is what you’d call “cheap.”