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Ventura Cove

San Diego CLC

September 20, 2009

by Rob Leonard

The San Diego Region of the CLC had their National Show on a beautiful clear blue-sky mid-September day. The cars were parked on the lawn, adjacent to San Diego Harbor at Ventura Cove. The weather was perfect and the west coast style barbeque was excellent. Some 40 classic Cadillacs and La Salles were on display spanning the 1930s through the 2000s.   

Two pairs of cars, from very different eras in our nation’s history, caught my interest. From the 1938 model year was a pair of 60 Specials. That was a year of change for Cadillac, and a year of high anxiety for the entire world.

The stunning new 60 Special model was the first complete car styled by Bill Mitchell. Cadillac ended production of its legendary V-16 power plant in 1937 and replaced it with a much simplified, lighter, and just as powerful L-head V-16. The world was still struggling with the Great Depression and all eyes were on Nazi Germany. The two 1938 60 Specials on display belong to Nick Fintzelberg and Bud Hartwell.

From the 1970 model year was a pair of Eldorado coupes.  In many ways 1970 represented a high point for America and its automobiles. This was especially true of the 1970 Eldorado. Except for the V-series Cadillacs of the past few years, no Cadillac motor cars were more powerful than those built in 1970.  America was at the height of its power and prestige with low unemployment, boundless opportunities, and an entire decade without a significant recession.

 That year’s Eldorado was the last of the first generation FWD design and sported a 500 CID V8 (newer Eldorados were burdened by emissions control equipment that robbed them of power.) The twin examples of the 1970 Eldorado on display both belong to Omer “Jack” Brackx.

Thanks to all that brought their beautiful cars to the event and special thanks to Gary Sisk for making the show a reality. 

 

 
 
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Date Last Updated: July 14, 2017
 
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