Classic European sports cars were made to hug the curves of the North Fork’s meandering country roads.
So say the participants in the first North Fork Vintage Sports and Touring Rally which was held on Sunday, May 31 and traveled along some of the region’s most scenic roads from Cutchogue to Orient.
“It’s not about going high speeds on a highway,” said Bob Shelton, a classic Eurpoean sports car owner who has a home outside Boston and in Cutchogue. “They’re more fun at lower speeds when you have to make a lot of steering adjustments.”
The cars traveled east along Peconic Bay Boulevard, Oregon Road and Route 48, Sunday morning eventually making their way to Orient and back.
Shelton did not drive his 1964 MGB in the rally — the exhaust pipe fell off and he spent the morning reattaching the piece. But he joined his fellow European car enthusiasts at Pugliese Vineyards in Cutchogue to show off the vehicles and chat with spectators. Drivers were then treated to lunch from Lucharito’s.
“They are very easy to fix,” Shelton said of his vehicle. “There are no computers.”
About 30 vehicles participated in the event, which was organized by Daniel Gale Sotheby’s International Realty agent Freddy Markham and sponsored by the agency.
“The cars that were invited were all pre-1990,” said Markham, who drove his red 1976 TR6 Triumph in the rally.”They’re from all over Long Island. It was a great day and there were great roads.”
He added that in future years the event will likely be held to raise money for charity.
Markham reached out to fellow European car buffs through the Long Island Triumph Association and other avenues. The organization has a strong following of car lovers who enjoy cars built by the Triumph Motor Company, a new-defunct British car manufacturer.
“They don’t make cars like this anymore,” Markham said. “And this is what the car was made for. Touring and rallying.”
See more photos from the event below.