Sixth Annual Carmel Mission Classic is August 22

  • story by David M. Brown
  • photos by Steve Natale
  • posted on 08/2018
  • posted in: Noteworthy

Chris Cord will appear with a 1937 812 Cabriolet manufactured by his grandfather, E.L. Cord, and Phil Hill’s 1927 Packard will be shown at this year’s Carmel Mission Classic, Wednesday, August 22.

More than 1,000 car lovers are expected to attend the sixth annual event, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., at the historic Carmel Mission Basilica, 3080 Rio Road in Carmel. Approximately 50 cars and 10 motorcycles cars will to be shown.

The early missionary to the area, Father Junípero Serra, is buried on the church grounds; he was canonized by Pope Francis in 2015. All of the net proceeds assist the charities of the Knights of Columbus and the Carmel Mission.

Packard will be the featured marque, including the 1927 Packard 343 Convertible Sedan, restored and once owned by the great driver; this is presented by the Academy of Art University in San Francisco, which maintains a stellar collection of classic autos at its downtown campus. Another Packard, a 1925 truck built exclusively for use in the company’s factory, will be presented by its owner, local restaurateur Pat Phinney; his Baja Cantina Grill & Filling Station in Carmel will offer nominally priced food during the day.

Other feature cars are a 1909 Franklin, a 2018 Ford GT, 2018 Ferrari 488, and an Enzo and a Pagani from an exotic car collector in Texas.

Cord will be hosting a seminar on the history of his family’s great marque, represented by the 1937 812 Cabriolet. Barry Meguiar, star of Car Crazy, will once again be the celebrity master of ceremonies, and guest judges will be Leslie Kendall, chief curator of the Petersen Automotive Museum in Los Angeles, and custom car guru, John D’Agostino.

A variety of trophies will be awarded to the owners of the fine automobiles, including Best of Show. A U.S. Marine color guard from the Defense Language Institute will begin the event, and Bishop Sylvester Ryan will offer the annual blessing of the cars. Also, guests may take docent tours of the mission and the grounds.

“When was the last time you went to a car show at a 250-year-old mission, which just happens to be ‘the jewel of the Monterey Peninsula,’ where a saint is buried, which also serves designer beers and wines from several wineries and includes a bishop’s blessing?,” says Chairman Frank DiPaola, a retired Los Angeles police officer who helped found the event with friend, Richard Pepe, a retired New York City policeman, in 2013.

“At the Carmel Mission Classic, there is something for the body and something for the soul,” he adds. “The Carmel Mission feeds the spirit every day, and the annual Carmel Mission Classic feeds the passion for fine cars, fine wine and gourmet food.”

For more information on or tickets for the Carmel Mission Classic, see, e-mail or call 831.915.5311.