Pittsburgh Italian Car Show and Vintage Races 7/16-7/19/15

I learned about this show, which featured a very large turnout of cars of all types, as a Fiat Club of America member somewhere around January of this year.  Held in Schenley Park,  a large urban park in Pittsburgh, PA, I thought it sounded interesting. So I decided to actually enter a car of my own, for the very first time, in a judged show event.  Previously, I had only done charity shows for fun.

The car I wound up taking to Pittsburgh was not the one I had planned to bring, as originally I had intended to bring a Fiat 124 Coupe.  The restoration work was not done in time, however, so having paid the fees and so forth with those being non-refundable, I had to call on my little Fiat 600 sedan instead.  This turned out to be a great call, because in the course of things, much to my surprise, I won a class award from the Fiat Club of America (Fiat rear engine) in the club national show, which was held in conjunction with the Cortile (Italian car show) that is an annual part of the Pittsburgh Vintage Grand Prix (PVGP) weekend.   While the Cortile is an annual part of the PVGP, this year Fiat was the featured marque, so it was an ideal time to enter anything Fiat, needless to say.

The class award I won was a big surprise to me, but a pleasant one, as were memories of the city itself.  Pittsburgh symbolizes revival/rebirth after being severely economically hurt during the closing of the steel mills from the late 1970s to the early 1990s.  Driving through the city, one can see many areas being repurposed and redeveloped, along with still some sections of urban decay.   Traffic is legendary, along the I-376 beltway it gets just horrendous during the typical rush hour time period.

Going back to the races and show, it was probably the largest group of cars you’ll see in the East at an automotive event outside of the Amelia Island shindig in Florida every March.  As the pictures will show, British, German and Italian cars were well represented, along with the usual American product.  The vintage races themselves were neat, but….clearly not really ‘professional’ in organization due to mixture of cars of various displacement in classes, along with the fact there were simply not many areas you could see the track from.  Most of it runs through some woods without spectator areas.

As most of the events I attend, I’ll let the pictures tell the story from here on out.

1935 Fiat Balilla.  Barn fresh, one of only 4 existant (so it is thought)
1935 Fiat Balilla. Barn fresh, one of only 4 existant (so it is thought)
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Fiat 500 Jolly
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Lancia Fulvia 1.2 Coupe
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Fiat section of Cortile. Here is an Abarth Zagato.
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Fiat 1500GT Ghia. Immaculate, one of my favorites of the Fiats. Also rare.
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Fiat Dino Spyder
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Alfa Romeo Giulietta Sprint Speciale

Alfa Romeo Giulietta Sprint Speciale info

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Alfa Giulietta Spider
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Lancia Flaminia
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Ferrari 512BB
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Ferrari F12 Berlinetta. My favorite of all the high dollar supercars of this day.
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Ferrari 458 Spider Dealer tag. Note the price 🙂

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Ferrari section
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Porsche 356
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Porsches…924, 911 etc.
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BMW club section
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Porsche 914

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Healey Sprite
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Morris Minor Traveller
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MGB’s by the bucket. The Prince of Darkness, Lucas, lurks in the shadows 🙂
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Early Bugeye Sprite.
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Sprite engine. This a rather potent one, with dual SU carbs

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Nash Metropolitan
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Land Rover, I think 2nd series. I really liked this thing. They are becoming quite collectible now.
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Lotus section, mostly Evoras. One lone Elan, seen in next photo.

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Elan twincam engine
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Jaguar E-Type interior through rear hatch. Great original complete tool kit and accessories.

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Triumph GT-6 section. My favorite Triumph model.
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GT-6 Engine
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GT-6 typical spartan interior of the day.
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Infamous Triumph TR7. I recall quite a few of these around when I was little. First one I’d seen in years. British Leyland’s revenge on the auto buyer, they were notorious for having every possible problem. Foreshadowed the impending death of the British auto industry.
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Triumph TR-3
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Nightmarish looking V12 of a late 80s XJS

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This is, I think, one of the new India-built Royal Enfield single cylinder bikes.

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BSA (Birmingham Small Arms) motorcycle section
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Says Harley, but this is an Aermacchi, an Italian bike. Harley bought them in the late 60s and rebadged them. I think this is a 350 Sprint from the early 1970s.

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Lancia Fulvia 1.3S Rallye. Great car, my favorite of the show…these are very rare in USA and this was a USA export model. These had aluminum hood, doors, and trunk lid for reduced weight.

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Lamborghini Miura
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Someone had two of these cats there. I forget what they were called but I think from South America originally. Perhaps an astute reader will know.

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Fiat 600. This was very nice car, I’d like to meet the owner 😀
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Autobianchi Bianchina Trasformabile
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Oldsmobile Toronado, the first mass produced FWD car from GM. One of their better looking cars from the late 1960s.

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Janis Joplin’s 356

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Some samples of the vintage race event, from the only corner where there was good viewing.

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