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Channel Islands British Car Show 7/14

Published on 7/14/2019


Channel Islands British Car Show

The sun was up and it was still cool as I headed west to the 29th Annual All-British Car Show at Channel Islands Harbor, Oxnard. The weather looked great until I neared the grade before Camarillo and saw the deep marine layer hanging over the hills. As I descended into Camarillo the temperature dropped, mist started forming on my windshield, and I  kicked myself for not bringing something warmer than a denim long- sleeve shirt.


As I drove through the farms and fields between Camarillo and Oxnard, I wondered who from the club was attending. Upon arrival I was directed to the Healey parking area and saw six other “Big” Healeys belonging to Club members Ron Fine, Phil Caliva, Dex Kaytis, Russ Thompson (with Joyce Maeda), Bill Hoyt and Dave and Bunny DeLorie. All four of the Bugeyes attending were club members: Tom Spangler, Greg Aden, Emil Joseph, and Ralph Deex. There were a few square-body Spidgets also.


Our “rare” member Chuck Lakowski and his Jensen-Healey along with three other Jensen-Healeys were in a separate class of “Rarities”. Finally, Rich Jones and his wife were there in his Sunbeam Tiger. Additionally, there were two 100's, a 100-6, and two 3000's also on display.


As in past years the Farmers' Market was open and this year a Fine Art Market was also taking place so there was a lot of foot traffic through the car show. Members of the host club, Central Coast British Car Club, were busy sellling raffle tickets and Greg Aden put his purchases to good use winning four prizes. The crowd was also treated to a Pipe and Drum performance that included some young Highland dancers.


Representatives of the SeasideHighland Games in Ventura were on hand to select the Tartan Surfboard winner, which went to a Mini Traveler.


A few club members decided to visit the show without their cars, including Charlie Hart and Larry Bryant. And others, like Chuck Lakowski with his grandson Jim, brought guests with them. Speaking of noted visitors, the Healey area got a lot of interest from distinguished British actor Malcolm McDowell who brought one of his young sons to check out the cars.


The awards portion of the show saw "back-in-the-day member" Fred Cohen take first in the Big Healey class with his 'nasty boy' 100-M. Club member Ron Fine took second place for his blue-over-white 3000. In the Sprite class first place went to a 1964 square body and Greg Aden and his green and yellow Bugeye racer took second.


By 2:05pm a group was ready to head home and with the temperatures from Newbury Park to the 405 Fwy in LA registering above 90 degrees it was decided to take the Coast Highway. It seemed a good idea as we made good time until we hit Trancas Canyon. Then we hit a figurative wall. Traffic slowed to a crawl and the temperature gauge kept climbing. As we sat in traffic at the light at Zuma Beach my car died and didn't want to start no matter how much I choked her. According to the gauge I had plenty of gas so out of the car I jumped and started pushing to the edge of the road. Then it became a chinese fire drill as Dex, Phil, and some guy in a truck next to me hit the pavement and started pushing. It was vapor lock and a 20 minute cool down got me going again. However, we didn't want to get back in the traffic jam, a turtle was going faster than we were. Dex used his traffic app to find a round-about route that got us to Kanan Dume Rd and we were speeding along again.


But not for long. Another traffic jam has us all cursing and then Rich Jones said we could turn off just ahead at Cornell Road and get over to Mulholland. Phil and Dex decided not to wait and made a turn at Troutdale Rd; Rich was afraid they wouldn't get through because last year's fire had burned one of the bridges. We continued on reaching Mulholland and took Mulholland to Topanga Canyon where I refueled and jumped on the 101Fwy.


Traffic was moving pretty good and I transitioned to the 134 and really picked up speed. I arrived home at 5:45pm, hot, tired and ready for a cold adult beverage.