Journal: The California Festival Of Speed Is A Celebration Of Porsche

The California Festival Of Speed Is A Celebration Of Porsche

By Andrew Golseth
April 11, 2016

Photography by Erik Ruggels

Southern California is unquestionably the automotive capital of the world, and that occasionally makes for some tough choices. Sometimes there are almost too many events happening simultaneously, but I’m not complaining. This past weekend was no different, and if you’re a Porsche lover it was an exceptionally fulfilling weekend.

Saturday, I opted to head north to Fontana for the 15th annual California Festival of Speed. I’d never attended but it’s a three-day bucket list exhibition for the Porsche petrolisti that I’ve wanted to experience for years. Now held at Auto Club Speedway, the P-car phenomenon hosts time trials, autocrosses, swap meets and parts vendors, concours, club racing, and more. Did I mention it’s free for spectators?

The summer-like year-round weather certainly plays a big part in making Southern California a prime automotive landscape, but believe it or not it does rain on rare occasion. I checked the forecast throughout the week leading up to the event, and things were looking grey. Thunderstorms in the region, much like the projected climate for this past weekend, normally shuts similar events down or at least bring them to a crawl.

Luckily for us, we were spared rain in favor of cool and consistent overcast, plus mild drizzle. Either way, it’d take more than slippery tarmac to shut down this rain-or-shine occasion—real Porsche enthusiasts aren’t afraid to get their cars wet. Speaking of, there were several friends of Petrolicious at the event, including Alexander Bermudez, Bisimoto, and Magnus Walker.

The racing was great fun to watch—reminding me I need to get some more circuit seat time. The paddocks were full of Porsches of all types, but largely 911. Yet, there were a number of surprises including some Datsun Z-cars and a rare stateside Mitsubishi Evolution V. My personal favorite spectacle was the parade lap, displaying everything from a B|B|I Autosport 991 GT3 RS to the earliest air-cooled street cars from Stuttgart.

If you’re a Porsche fan, experiencing the California Festival of Speed is a must. Volunteers run the festival and the organizers are always seeking extra helping hands. If you’re interested in racing your Porsche (or non-Porsche), volunteering, or just wanting to spectate, check out the California Festival of Speed homepage for more details.

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Ray Jay
Ray Jay(@hamfisted)
5 years ago

Reading these posts makes me want to drink bleach

Guitar Slinger
Guitar Slinger(@gtrslngr)
5 years ago

” Southern California is unquestionably the automotive capital of the world ”

Oh really ? I’ll gladly take issue with that bit of CA urban myth . Historically CA has been anything but the automotive capitol of the US … never mind the world . Seriously son . Hype , Hyperbole , Overstatement , Myth , Self Promotion and Revisionist History do not bode well for the burgeoning automotive writer . Unless of course your plans are to move on to writing corporate marketing propaganda for the manufactures sometime in the near future . In which case .. do carry on .

Guitar Slinger
Guitar Slinger(@gtrslngr)
5 years ago
Reply to  Guitar Slinger

PS; So where exactly was the racing ? Cause all I saw was a bunch of owners ‘ displaying ‘ their precious toys on track under the guise of racing in order to attract a paying audience . Racing indeed ..

5 years ago
Reply to  Guitar Slinger

Perhaps you missed the portion of the article that mentioned the audience for the event was able to spectate gratis. Not too many automotive related anything that affords such a low cost, where they also get to see the cars run on track.