Car shows

Cape Cod GN

Member
Joined
May 21, 2014
Hi all, I just wanted to see if any of you also deal with “disrespect” of the rarity of the GN or turbo regal’s at their local car shows.
I’ve been to many and have won only one award while for instance, a dime a dozen 86 Corvette with a for sale sign on it beat me out in my class. There have been other car shows where they just flat out ignore the GN and keep walking.
I think the disrespect is more along the lines of how clueless these judges are.
Anyone else notice or experienced this?
 

dezldave961

2004 Turbo Regal
Joined
Mar 20, 2020
I wouldn't call it "disrespect" so much as the variety of vehicles is always growing. Don't get too disheartened from not winning a few shows, or that's going to sour the whole experience for you. If you show up just wanting to win a trophy and not make your goal having chats about more universal car things as unique builds show up, you're gonna have a bad time (South Park reference to their "Better Off Dead" parody ski instructor).

I just started going to some events this year, and while I'm not expecting any trophies despite the countless custom work that went into my build, I've always considered shows to be a socializing venue where we get to humble-brag a little when people ask questions, and be a good member of the automotive enthusiast crowd by checking out other cars that catch your eye to do the same for that owner.

(unpopular opinion alert) GN/TB's are a staple at most car shows I've seen across the country in the past 20-30yrs, and the level of build is basically going to range from preserved with as much OEM/NOS as possible, with matching shirt/jacket/cap and original window sticker in a sleeve/frame... to the heavily modified single-digit drag build with nearly identical exterior appearance (+ Welds/Mickeys & cage/Kirkey), that's also probably not rolled the final digit of the odometer, if still connected. Preserving such a cool car is commendable to carry the torch, but wanting a participation trophy is not what you should be after, or you may need to prepare for disappointment when you don't go undefeated (even to cars that end up winning with less pizzazz than you feel you brought).

I say all of this with respect and hopes that you enjoy more car shows, and win your fair share when the paint shines just right. With my newer 3800 cars over the last 20yrs, I've always enjoyed bumping into owners of the still-premier platform that made V6's a viable performance option back then, and chatting about everything under the sun after the common engine family breaks the ice.
 

Cape Cod GN

Member
Joined
May 21, 2014
I wouldn't call it "disrespect" so much as the variety of vehicles is always growing. Don't get too disheartened from not winning a few shows, or that's going to sour the whole experience for you. If you show up just wanting to win a trophy and not make your goal having chats about more universal car things as unique builds show up, you're gonna have a bad time (South Park reference to their "Better Off Dead" parody ski instructor).

I just started going to some events this year, and while I'm not expecting any trophies despite the countless custom work that went into my build, I've always considered shows to be a socializing venue where we get to humble-brag a little when people ask questions, and be a good member of the automotive enthusiast crowd by checking out other cars that catch your eye to do the same for that owner.

(unpopular opinion alert) GN/TB's are a staple at most car shows I've seen across the country in the past 20-30yrs, and the level of build is basically going to range from preserved with as much OEM/NOS as possible, with matching shirt/jacket/cap and original window sticker in a sleeve/frame... to the heavily modified single-digit drag build with nearly identical exterior appearance (+ Welds/Mickeys & cage/Kirkey), that's also probably not rolled the final digit of the odometer, if still connected. Preserving such a cool car is commendable to carry the torch, but wanting a participation trophy is not what you should be after, or you may need to prepare for disappointment when you don't go undefeated (even to cars that end up winning with less pizzazz than you feel you brought).

I say all of this with respect and hopes that you enjoy more car shows, and win your fair share when the paint shines just right. With my newer 3800 cars over the last 20yrs, I've always enjoyed bumping into owners of the still-premier platform that made V6's a viable performance option back then, and chatting about everything under the sun after the common engine family breaks the ice.
Thanks for the reply Delz. I do go to car shows to socialize it is a great time! I’ve had my GN for 10 years and been to many as well as I belong to a car club.
I’m really not upset about not getting awards, it’s more along the line that I find that the Turbo Regals and GN’s are over looked by judges at a majority of car shows. I was just looking to see if anyone else has experienced this. Richard Clark said it best when he explained the lack of respect for the G-Body Turbo Buick’s in Black Air. He said “To those who think they know what it is, I’m quick to correct them, no it’s not a Monte Carlo, it’s a Grand National...to those who know what is, it is an object of respect and they revere the cars.” “But for people who really don’t understand what they are, it’s an oddity, they really don’t see much value in it, they don’t give it any respect...”
 

dezldave961

2004 Turbo Regal
Joined
Mar 20, 2020
True, and I'm sure the owners of some similarly overlooked vehicles may feel the same: Syclone/Typhoons with a kindred spirit to GN's while also packaged in a very common 1980's GM chassis... or 300ZX's that got spaceship-level technology while connecting the Datsun Z-cars to the modern incarnations.

Everyone comes into the scene at a different time, with a different reason/vehicle that got them started. With so many other things that lure people away from this fun hobby/career/obsession, try thinking of it like the VFW/American Legion encouraging newer members from the Afghan/Iraq/etc. generation. Gate-keeping rather than educating does none of us any favors (something being pointed out about car culture elsewhere, lately), especially when we all show up to have a good time. (there's about 3-4 things I could expand on there, based on a bunch of socializing I do among my circles, but I'll keep it short)

- Dave
 

corsair231

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jul 8, 2005
This is why I prefer a cruise-in to a car show. At a cruise, there is no pressure of judging or any expectation of a trophy where a show, like everything that is voted on, it can get political. I've been to shows with a Pontiac club where a guy with a very nice TTA lost to a guy with a so-so plain firebird. The issue was that the TTA owner only showed up for the big show but the firebird owner attended all the club meets so everyone votes who/what they know. I've always found that at cruise-ins people mingle a little more and even seem to be more inquisitive. I always seemed to get plenty attention at cruises even if it is just a nice Monte comment. Of course I consider that a teachable moment :LOL: (side-bar, I was at a cruise today when a few SRT-4s pulled in. I strolled by and said, "Hi" of course none of the drivers were old enough to remember the original Neon ad so I had to add in "Cute, some Neons." They looked like I had just stolen their candy. Anyway, like Dave said, try showing up with a Syclone to any kind of meet and none of the "traditional hot rodders" have any idea what it is. They just think it is a modded S10. I can't tell how many times I've been asked where did you get that body kit. :eek: And I get even more strange looks when I drive my Pontiac Grand Prix GXP. It's like, what is this thing doing here? Until I say , yeah I know the LS is sitting wrong and then we can get a conversation going. :)
 
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dezldave961

2004 Turbo Regal
Joined
Mar 20, 2020
Right on. I actually bought my GP GXP to daily drive (loved every minute of it the past 5-6yrs) without the looming threat of modding, because upgrading for that LS4 is 2x the headache and cost of my 3800's.

On a relevant note, I hit the local Cars & Coffee yesterday and had a great time. People just roaming the lot and have a variety of old and new iron with all sorts of work done. Same as when I went to the road rally that I posted a video from 2wks ago, and ran around the mountains with some LSX guys all day. Now, I'm gearing up for an initial 1/4mi TnT near Richmond, and I'm sure there'll be cool stuff to eyeball when I'm not dealing with my own car between passes.

Spring has sprung, so hopefully your can get out with your project vehicles (or daily drivers) to check out the scenery.
 

Hunter Dog

Active Member
Joined
Aug 1, 2015
I have been going to maybe 10-15 shows a year for about four years or so. I would suggest going into each of them with the goal of having fun, meeting some new people, showing off your car, learning about others and if you pick up some hardware great. Over the years, I actually like winning a door prize more than a trophy or plaque because you can get lucky and pick up something nice. Once you have won a number of trophis and fill up a case or two you may feel the same way. In judging or awarding the trophies it is often more about who knows who, someone likes a certain color, some like an older or newer car, all kinds of reasons. If serious, find the shows that actually have judges and some kind of checksheet or criteria. Find shows where GM and Buicks are known. Just my two cents.
 

KC87

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 11, 2009
Who cares what a bunch of lame ass judges think, the motoring public knows the
real deal when they see it. Someone coming up in the parking saying how nice it
is would mean more than the clueless at some winner already picked show.
 

corsair231

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jul 8, 2005
Right on. I actually bought my GP GXP to daily drive (loved every minute of it the past 5-6yrs) without the looming threat of modding, because upgrading for that LS4 is 2x the headache and cost of my 3800's.
You got that right. There's not much out there for those platforms. A cold air intake and aftermarket exhaust is the extent of my performance mods. Everything else is cosmetic. The wildest thing I have is my Inferno Hood which does get a fair amount of attention. Other than that, most people would just see a Grand Prix, lol.
 
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