By Lizett Bond:
The opening scene of the movie Le Mans spotlights Steve McQueen’s steely-eyed character, Michael Delaney with a co-star – a slate gray, 1970 Porsche 911S. The duo motors through the pastoral French countryside in sharp contrast to the racing action to follow.
Inaugural Friends of Steve McQueen Rally
That same spirit was evident as a group of 24 driving enthusiasts took to the scenic back roads of California’s “Riviera” on May 14 and 15 for the inaugural Friends of Steve McQueen Rally, sponsored by Russo and Steele. Departing Malibu, the group roared over infamous Mulholland Drive, later enjoying lunch and aviation photo opportunities at the Camarillo airport. Heading out once again, participants explored the back roads of Santa Paula, Ojai, and Lake Casitas before heading up into the Los Padres National Forest for a little twist and shout mountain driving, where they took a mid-afternoon break to nosh on a road-side repast prepared by students of Boys Republic.[soliloquy id=”102823″]
The day’s travels were capped off with a champagne reception at the beachfront Fess Parker resort in Santa Barbara, Calif. Later, a dinner party at the hotel featured a program presented by television, radio personality and automotive specialist, Dave Kunz and rally planner Gareth Ashwood. The hotel also served as the overnight destination for drivers and their guests. The next day’s drive meandered through the peaceful Santa Ynez Valley, including a cruise through the Danish-flavored town of Solvang. The final stage included a lunch stop at the historic Cold Springs Tavern, built in the 1860’s as a way station to serve the less speedy travelers of that era.
911 “BR” Project Car
The slate gray color of McQueen’s ride in Le Mans was a particular favorite for the actor, and he owned several Porsches in this hue. As a nod to McQueen’s color preference, a slate gray 1980 Porsche 911 will be unveiled at the Friends of Steve McQueen Car and Motorcycle show on June 4, 2016. “Project 911BR”, is a tribute to McQueen’s involvement with the Boys Republic. The car will be auctioned at a later date, all proceeds of the sale will directly benefit Boys Republic.
Automotive aficionados joining the Friends of Steve McQueen Car and Motorcycle Show for the charity build include McKenna Porsche, Bisimoto Engineering, Dunkel Brothers, and Brad Boyle Motorsports.
Steve McQueen: The Man and Le Mans
A special screening of Chad McQueen’s documentary, Steve McQueen: The Man and LeMans took place on May 18th at a theater near Boys Republic. Chad McQueen was on hand for a Q & A after the film. Chad McQueen’s work is the story behind the McQueen mystique, and the movie that is considered the standard by connoisseurs and the go-to for racing action.
The Boys Republic and The Friends of Steve McQueen Car and Motorcycle Show
As an alumnus, McQueen credited Boys Republic with turning his life around and setting him on his path to stardom. He continued his support of the boys and the school until his death in 1980. The McQueen family carries on with that involvement today.
Since 1907, the school and treatment community has guided more than 30,000 troubled boys and girls towards productive and fulfilling lives.
The Friends of Steve McQueen Car and Motorcycle show raises funds for the private, non-profit, nonsectarian community. The show, established by members and friends of the Porsche 356 Club of Southern California, has attracted automobile, motorcycle and off-road enthusiasts from throughout the United States.
The McQueen movie theme for this year’s show will be “The Getaway” and the action commences Friday evening, June 3rd, with a VIP dinner. The evening kicks off with a silent auction and wine tasting, followed by a movie themed dinner program with live auction. The meal is planned, prepared and served by students of Boys Republic.
The car and motorcycle show takes place Saturday, June 4th. The automotive gathering has experienced steady growth and increasing popularity, witnessed by the exhibition of 400 classic cars, motorcycles, travel trailers, and trucks at the 2015 event. Approximately 8,000-plus attendees perused the grounds, enjoying an up close and personal view of an eclectic array of collectible vehicles.
All the funds raised by the event, along with the sale of the Project 911BR Porsche, will go directly to and benefit the Boys Republic.