2009 Targa Trophy Begs the Question, What is an Automotive Lifestyle Event?

By Kevin Miller



We have not been able to confirm if this was the sender of the press release.

Here at Autosavant, scores of forgettable press releases pour into collective inboxes each day. Some of those press releases, however, stand out in one way or another, and simply demand to be turned into an actual article. Today’s press release of honor touts the upcoming Targa Trophy, a trio of events taking place in Southern California being billed as “North America’s premier automotive lifestyle road rally event.” Needing to know more about what an automotive lifestyle road rally event was, I read past the first paragraph.

The Targa Trophy is said to cater to “exotic and sports car enthusiasts”, giving owners a “unique and thrilling way to showcase their vehicles, experience breathtaking views and attend A-list parties.” OK, I’m starting to get the picture. But didn’t most of these expensive-cars-and-A-List-party type of events go away because of the economy?

Evidently not. This year the Targa Trophy is a “triple crown event”, meaning that there are three opportunities for the rich and not-so-famous to flaunt their expensive cars among vapid socialites.  The first event is this month, commencing at Orange County’s “renowned shopping destination, South Coast Plaza.” Drivers will race off to the Imago Gallery in Palms Springs and make their way back to an awaiting crowd at South Coast Plaza. You read that right- they’re racing from an Orange County boutique collection to a gallery in Palm Springs. I’m not making this up.

The second Targa Trophy event is scheduled for June. It will start and finish at San Diego’s W Hotel, with a mid-day check point at Harrah’s Rincon Casino and an after party at the W Hotel. September’s grand finale will send drivers off from Fred Segal in Los Angeles, on to a scenic route to Big Bear Mountain. The rally’s final event will take place at an undisclosed location in Los Angeles. At each event, finish line festivities will be followed by a private award ceremony for rally participants and an after party featuring top music entertainment and lifestyle sponsors that is open to fans and spectators.

Sadly, the intern at the San Diego PR firm who sent the press release didn’t know how to spell Porsche, and didn’t bother to run spell check, so her email that preceded the press release went out with the spelling “Porches” instead of “Porsches”.  Perhaps she actually corrected the original copy of the email before sending it, using correction fluid on the computer screen.

While it is good to see that the bad economy isn’t necessarily wiping out every bit of fun, this event seems like a bit of high-dollar conspicuous consumption when such things are out of vogue. This high-dollar event is a far cry from regional “run-what-you-brung” TSD rallies, whose after-parties tend to take place at blue-collar bars or burger joints. The “lifestyle” portion of this event means that only the most out-of-touch SoCal trust-funders and D-List hangers-on will be in attendance. Or, basically, exactly the trendy, nouveau-riche crowd you’d expect to see driving their exotic cars between Southern California fashion boutiques.

Now that I’ve gotten that little rant off of my chest, you can read the text of the press release below.

Third Annual Targa Trophy Road Rally Launches Triple Crown Series for Exotic and Sports Car Enthusiasts

Three Event Series to Take Place in Orange County, San Diego and Los Angeles in May, June and September 2009

April XX, California; Targa Trophy, North America’s premier automotive lifestyle rally event, plans to zip through Southern California’s finest cities as it gears up to launch its first ever triple crown series. The unique proceeding will provide sports car enthusiasts the opportunity to showcase their vehicles during an energy-charged day incorporating competition, luxury automotive exhibitions and A-list parties, produced by Overell, Inc.

“Targa Trophy captures the characteristics of yesteryear’s motorsport events with a fresh twist,” explains Jason Overell, owner of Overell, Inc. and founder of the third annual road rally. “This is an unparalleled automotive driving exhibition, infused with excitement, and boasting an extremely impressive spectacle of exotic and specialty sports cars.”

Targa Trophy caters to the West Coast’s sports car aficionados, supplying them with a unique platform to celebrate and exhibit their passion for supreme driving machines.  Each event is comprised of 300 miles of adrenaline-pumping rally competition with 100 cars driving in and out of luxury destinations, creating an unparalleled luxury automotive experience for thousands of awe-inspired spectators. A strategic point system challenges the skill of both drivers and navigators to hit a series of check-points in predetermined times. Ferraris, Lamborghinis, Bugattis, Porsches and more will maneuver the course in each leg of the series with the promise of a visually stimulating experience.

Following the success of the 2008 production that took Beverly Hills, Santa Barbara and West Hollywood by storm, the 2009 series will commence on May 30 in Orange County. Drivers will take off from renowned shopping destination, South Coast Plaza, enjoy a scenic route to Imago Gallery in Palm Springs and, finally, cruise through the finish line in front of a waiting crowd back at South Coast Plaza.

The ralliers travel to San Diego on June 27 where the start and finish festivities will take place at the W San Diego. Drivers will spend their day riding from San Diego to a mid-day check point at Harrah’s Rincon Casino and back to an after party at the W Hotel.

September 19 will be the grand finale for Targa Trophy 2009. Entrants will be sent off from Fred Segal and travel to Big Bear Mountain for a beautiful scenic drive. The highly-anticipated culmination of the series will be held at an undisclosed location in Los Angeles.

In each city, the finish line festivities will be followed by a private award ceremony for rally participants and an after party featuring top music entertainment and lifestyle sponsors that is open to fans and spectators.

To learn more about Targa Trophy 2009, register for any of the upcoming rallies, receive email updates or join our automotive and lifestyle sponsoring brands, visit www.targatrophy.com.


Overell Inc. is known for developing and producing a wide cache of exclusive lifestyle events targeting the lifestyle consumer market. Founded by marketing and concept visionary Jason Overell in 2002, Overell Inc. has fast become a beacon in the luxury marketing and event planning industry. Innovative concepts and cutting edge design have brought demand from notable brands and entities ranging in such diverse categories as nightlife and entertainment promotions, hospitality, retail, film production and commercial real estate. Some notable clients include Lamborghini, Bentley, Armani Exchange, Fred Segal, Revlon, Wasatch Yachts, Moet & Chandon Champagne, Grey Goose Premium Vodka, Westfield Malls, Starwood W Hotels, 60 Thompson Hotels, Symbolic Motor Car Company, Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego, Oliver McMillan Commercial Development, San Diego Film Festival, 944 Magazine and Modern Luxury Publications.

COPYRIGHT Autosavant – All Rights Reserved

Author: Kevin Miller

As Autosavant’s resident Swedophile, Kevin has an acute affinity for Saabs, with a mild case of Volvo-itis as well. Aside from covering most Saab-related news for Autosavant, Kevin also reviews cars and covers industry news. His “Great Drive” series, with maps and directions included, is a reader favorite.

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  1. Looking for full bottle of sleeping pills right now

  2. “Overell Inc. is known for developing and producing a wide cache of exclusive lifestyle events targeting the lifestyle consumer market.”


  3. I personally enjoy greatly when you are critiquing somebody’s spelling and include mis-spellings in your article. For example: “only the mot out-of-touch” But I especially like your use of the word “mot” because in French, “mot” is short for “bon mot” which means “a witty or incisive remark.” “Mot” does fit with the theme of your article, and would most likely be understood by the crowd attracted by this event. Except maybe the ones attending in their Porches.
    Will you be taking the BSOS Saab 900?

  4. Uncle E – ouch! Thanks for pointing that out, and I’ve corrected the post.

    One misspelling is probably still better than CNN.com’s track record.

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