As far as having fun behind the wheel goes there aren't many things better than cruising a roadster on a nice sunny day. Throw in about 100 roadsters that all share a traditional style and the good time just got great. I recently had one of these great days while participating in the 10th Annual Pasadena Roadster Club Reliability Run. The "annual" part of that is a bit of a misnomer, but the club started the run in 1947 and held the run until 1950 (partnered with another Pasadena club, the Pacers, the last couple of years). The PRC then disbanded and took several decades off until it was revived in 2002 with members sharing an interest in early-style traditional roadsters. In 2004 they started the Reliability Run again retracing the same route as the 1947 run.
The reintroduced run has quickly become one of the must-do events for anyone with an early-style roadster. Many of the same roadsters show up each year but as the news has spread more and more new drop-tops are showing up and this year's run even had a few that were shipped in from several states away.
The PRC Reliability Run is one of the events my son and I look forward to each year. We both enjoy hitting the road in a hot rod and this one gives him a chance to act as navigator and photographer as he shoots as many of the cruising roadsters as he can while I'm driving (shooting from the rumble seat when he can).
This year's event was looking like it was going to possibly be a wash out as the weather man wasn't predicting the best top down conditions. I was watching the forecasts all week and it was looking like rain was going to put a damper on the festivities. When Saturday morning rolled around the skies were looking gray and a bit ominous but my roadster was cleaned up and ready to go after a shakedown run two days earlier revealed a leaking radiator hose resulting in some over-heating. I decided to take our chances (although I did leave the top on) and headed towards Pasadena to meet up with the rest of roadsters.
Once I arrived I was greeted with about 70 roadsters already checked in and lined up. Before we took off another 30 or so showed up. The route is kept a secret until you check in and get your paperwork. Each year the route has been similar but a few changes were thrown in this year. A few of the club members run the route obeying all the traffic laws and average their times to come up with the participants' time to hit (which is also a secret until the end of the run). So I guess you could say there's a competition element to the run but nobody I've ever talked to that's running really takes it seriously. The check points give the roadsters a chance to bunch up a little while they draw a card for the poker hand.
Once the run was over and almost everyone returned to the starting point, we were welcomed with burgers and chips cooked up by the In-N-Out Burger rig and more bench racing and discussions of the scenic drive. I'm sure I'll be back next year, possibly with another passenger or two.
Keven Vaughan's '32 looked...
Keven Vaughan's '32 looked like a fresh build and featured an aluminum-headed Flathead with a Hexagon 2x2 intake and air cleaner. The interior featured a '39 banjo wheel and dash.
Steve Dennish from Limeworks...
Steve Dennish from Limeworks Speed Shop brought out his recently finished roadster and tested the reliability of the English Daimler hemi under the bonnet.
Billy Crewl debuted his fresh...
Billy Crewl debuted his fresh recreation of Jack Calori's Model A and picked up the President's Choice trophy for his effort. Billy worked closely with Jack to make sure the roadster was as close as it could be and it even proudly wears one of Jack's original timing tags on the dash. Unfortunately Jack passed away before he was able to take a ride in his "old" roadster. Billy still has a few things to finish when money and time come together.
Once the run hit a little...
Once the run hit a little altitude the clouds parted and the weather was roadster-perfect. There were several turn-outs along the route that provided some great scenery of the San Gabriel Mountains and blue skies.