Jim and Sabrina's 1959 Chevrolet Apache 32 Long bed Stepside Pickup
2005 OCVCCA All-Chevrolet Car Show - October 9, 2005

We recently joined the Vintage Chevrolet Club of America and the local Orange County Chapter of the VCCA. One of the benefits of membership is being able to have your vintage Chevrolet professionally judged at nationally sanctioned meets of the VCCA.

When we decided to restore the truck to near factory condition, Sabrina and I both felt participating in such an event as the professional judging performed by the VCCA, would be a fun and exciting exercise to participate in. On Sunday, October 9, 2005, the Orange County Chapter of the VCCA held such an event - the All-Chevrolet Car Show. The show included a show and shine open to all classic pre-1981 Chevrolets. All entrant vehicles participated in a “peer-judging” format that determined the show’s winning vehicles. Registration for the show was open to all interested classic Chevrolet owners desiring to participate.

Under the peer-judging format, each entrant was provided a scorecard containing a vote for each vehicle class. Entrants after attending to getting their vehicle parked and performing any last-minute sprucing up with detail cleaner were encouraged to leave their vehicles and serve as a “peer judge” and “inspect” all of the vehicles in each class and vote on the particular vehicle for each class that the entrant liked the best of that class. Other groups such as sponsors and the OCVCCA board voted upon a few additional award classes.

In addition to the peer judging, professional judging was performed by nationally trained VCCA judges were offered by prior registration to all current VCCA members participating in the show. We signed up for this extra offering when we registered for the show. Unlike the criteria for peer judging, the VCCA professional judging criteria does not provide for the evaluation and comparison between vehicles at the show. Or in other words, professional judged entrants were not directly competing against any other vehicle at the event. Instead, all professional judged vehicles competed against that particular vehicle when it first rolled off of the factory assembly line or dealer showroom floor.

This criterion is what attracted me to the VCCA in the first place. The idea behind this criterion is to promote vintage Chevrolets to be maintained in their original conditions and not be modified. The club by its mere existence pays homage to the General Motors designers and engineers that brought these great old Chevrolets to the marketplace.

Being scrutinized by a four-member team of professional judges that appreciate the style and originality of your old Chevrolet was both intimidating and exuberating. The four judges that evaluated our truck that day were all extremely respectful and expressed appreciation for the work and dedication bestowed on our truck. However, it was very nerve racking to say the least as the team of four poured over every inch of the truck each holding a clipboard. They each would look at an area, scribble a note and move to another spot on the truck. Each judge was responsible to evaluate a specific area of the truck. Several times, one judge would confer with another judge or all of the judges before noting something on his clipboard. It was those instances that almost made me loose my composure. The funny thing is, as much as I was telling myself this would all be good constructive commentary, Sabrina expressed her "protective instincts" on more than one occasion to me during the actual judging.

The whole timeframe of the judging of our truck was only 10 minutes or so. However, it seemed like hours at the time. The team of judges was very thorough and even conferred with me on a few occasions prior to making their notations on their clipboards. This collaboration with the vehicle owner is provided for in the judging rules and it permits the entrant to offer substantive proof of authenticity of a particular accessory.

An example would be to verify that a particular optional accessory was offered during the year of manufacture of the vehicle. If a judge wasn’t sure or believed that an installed accessory was not correct, the judge can ask the owner to provide proof of authenticity for that particular accessory. In such a case, a well-prepared entrant could produce the owner’s manual, factory shop manual, assembly manual or other Chevrolet document that demonstrates the particular correctness of any such accessory.

Of the approximate 300 entrants for the show, about 100 vehicles were professionally judged. After the professional judging was completed and the peer judging ballots were turned in, the OCVCCA officials counted the ballots for the peer judging and announced the winners. Our truck won first place for 1955-59 Original Pickups, Suburbans and El Caminos.

We will find out how we did in the professional judging in about two months. This particular professional judging event was the second part of a joint judging event. The first judging event was held on Sunday, September 25, 2005 in Burbank, CA at the San Fernando Valley Chapter VCCA All-Chevrolet Car Show. Both shows comprised the nationally sanctioned judging for the VCCA division one area.

Here are some pictures of the event that Sabrina took.

Here are some pictures provided by a member of the OCVCCA.

Finally, here are some more pictures of the event taken by David Lindsay.

Sabrina and I had a great time at this show. We met some really nice folks. One fella we met, was Bill Samuelson of Costa Mesa, CA. His very nice Apache 32 Fleetside truck was parked right next to ours. Bill’s truck is an un-restored truck in original condition that was very clean. It had original power steering and was a real treat to see. He has owned his truck since 1983 and is its third owner. This is the first car show Bill has entered it in. In addition to his sweet old Stovebolt, he told us he owns a few Corvettes. Bill was a super guy and both Sabrina and I really enjoyed his company.

Many of the members of the club came by and introduced themselves and were very friendly. As new members, this was our first experience with the club. The whole experience was pleasant and I think I am going to enjoy participating in the activities of this club. In the meantime, we can’t wait until our judges’ scoring and Junior Oval arrives!





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