Events

H2O International 2013 Biggest and Best Yet!

This year’s H2O International 2013 was the year of the Audi B5 S4 and VW MKIV GTI. I swear I saw more examples of these two vehicles than in all the years previous. Maybe it’s because I yearn to one day add a VW MKIV R32 to the stable right after finishing up the recently acquired Rezmoto B5 S4. Or maybe it’s because there were actually a lot of B5’s and MKIV GTI’s..

(Photo Credits: Eric Greco)

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This years event was held at Fort Whaley campground about 20 minutes out from Ocean City. It could not have been located at a better venue. Hopefully this will be the new home for H2O from here on 0ut. Extremely organized, easy to get too (the line getting in was a breeze), and plenty of parking. Not to mention a plethora of awesome spots to park your ride for some very nice  photo spots.

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“Audi B5 S4 shaved bay. Thought I would never ever see something like this. I can’t even fathom the hours that went into this build. Just WOW!”

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SOWO 2013

SOWO 2013 StanceWorks BMW E30 M3

Well, we’re just now getting back into the groove of things after the 12 hour up, 12 hour back drive from Miami to Helen, GA for the annual SOWO Euro Car Show. If you own a modified Euro anywhere on the East Coast and you weren’t at SOWO 2013, there must be something wrong with you. This is probably one of the best Euro car shows of the year and this year was the biggest turn-out yet.

APR R8 GT

This year, the vendors were out in droves. Stop by any booth and you found yourself drooling over the amount of sick parts available and at a show price discount at that. Walking away empty handed was not an option. APR even had two full lifts with techs installing exhausts, downpipes and programming ECU’s on site. Now that is service.

Audi B8 S4 on bags

By the quality of cars that roamed the small alpine town of Helen, we can all assume the recession is over. From HPI’s white signature covered VW Scirocco to Unitronics Jetta Hybrid to a newly modified Audi S6; There were a lot of sick cars parked on the grass is what I’m trying to get at. If new models are not your thing, not to worry, old school classics looking as clean as they did rolling off the manufacturer’s assembly plant were everywhere to be found. SOWO has everything.

VW MKI Shaved Engine Bay

Staying in downtown Helen at any of the hotels is cool if you book early enough, but I highly recommend renting a cabin. After the shenanigans that go on in Helen and the crazy fast drives through the mountains, it’s nice to leave it all behind and just chill at the end of the day in a hot tub somewhere in the quiet seclusion of the mountains.

SOWO Helen Cabin

VW New Beetle Slammed

SOWO Audi B7 A4

Overall, we had a blast. We spent some good times with some good friends, connected with some old friends and got a nice break from the daily grind. We patiently await to make the trip again back to Helen for some more mountain run shenanigans next year.

H2O International 2012 Date and Location Announced

It’s that time of year again people. The yearly pilgrimage to Ocean City, Maryland for H2O International, the biggest VW/Audi/VAG event extravaganza you will ever experience. VW and Audi enthusiasts from all over the world make the trip to this small beach town and take to the streets. 1000’s of photographers and spectators line the 10 mile long stretch of highway to catch a glimpse of some of the hottest modified euro’s as well as some sick JDM examples.

Yet again, another event not to miss…

Register here: http://h2oi.com/

The Mystery Behind V2LAB’s Mystery Meat Orlando 2012

So the plan was to head out at the crack of dawn and drive up to V2LAB‘s Mystery Meat downtown Orlando, FL. to check out some of the sick cars that usually show up. 20 minutes outside of Orlando, I get the call that every enthusiast dreads to hear after a 3 hour trek, “Yo, the meet was cancelled.” WTF? What happened? Apparently cops broke up the party due to a few bad apples and an issue about permits. Blah, so I put out some calls to a few others that drove up the night before to no avail. No Answers. F*ck it…Let’s go check it out.

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V2 Lab’s Mystery Meat

For all our Florida readers, there is only one place you should be this weekend and that’s V2Lab’s Mystery Meat. The follow-up to last years Big Meat, Mystery Meat looks to be an even bigger and better show. This open format event has everything from JDM to Euro and everything in between. There will be something there for everyone. Located downtown Orlando, Florida, it’s no more than a few hours drive for anyone in the state. We expect to see you all up there and if you see us say ‘hey’. We love talking with fans.

Cars on Fifth 2012

Words: Rob | Photos: Ruckus

If there was one word to describe Cars on Fifth this year, it would be perfect. Located on the exclusive 5th street in Naples, Florida, Cars On 5th consists of blocks worth of Exotic and Classic cars flanked with the best shopping and restaurants that Naples has to offer. This luxury atmosphere keeps us coming back year after year. The reason why I say this year was perfect was a great combination of cool seventy degree weather, a great crowd, and the best cars to date.

Much like the variety of restaurants on 5th street, the diversity of cars at Cars On Fifth is quite special. There are very few shows where you see a classic truck slammed on bags across from a Shelby GT500 which is parked next to a Gulf blue Mercedes SLS AMG; While for the most part, cars are grouped by make and model, juxtapositions like that remind you if you like cars, you can appreciate them all. That ideal is seen throughout Cars on Fifth, everyone appreciates everything. Look in any direction and you’ll see a Ferrari guy talking to a Ford guy about his Mustang, or a crowd of Porsche enthusiasts admiring a slammed Rat Rod. Simply put, there is no hate.

So what stood out to me? Well, the first car that made me go “wow” was a gulf blue SLS AMG. There wasn’t a whole lot special about it, except that beautiful powder blue and that’s enough for me. My other best in show was the two-tone Ferrari 458 Italia. The black accents on this hot new Ferrari took it to the next level, and a great example of subtlety going a long way. This was why in a row of six 458’s it was the one that everyone was talking about.

I could go on and on about the beauty of dozens of the cars there, but I’m sure you would rather just look at the pictures. With something for everyone from food to shopping to all types of cars, Cars On Fifth keeps getting better and better with each passing year. Their only problem will be topping the perfection of this year’s show!

South Florida Exotic Toy Rally 2011

The South Florida Exotic Toy Rally has completed its 6th Annual run through the streets of South Florida. On December 10th 200+ exotics from Palm Beach, Broward, and Miami-Dade Counties embarked on a mission to raise a massive amount of money and a bounty of toys for the Toys for Tots Foundation. The procession of Ferrari’s, Lamborghini’s, Maserati’s, Porsche’s, BMW’s, Mercedes Benz’s. and other uber-lux euro’s stretched a phenomenal 5+ miles, snaking its way through the streets of Ft Lauderdale making its way towards the highways and byways of South Florida.

Escorted by the fine men and women of the Broward Sheriffs Department, the conga-line of euro-auto’s passed easily through the streets as well as on and off the highways, not having to yield to any other motor vehicles at any point during the 35 mile run. Don’t get the wrong idea, this event is not an excuse to break the law and speed recklessly through the streets, while escorted by the police. Quite the opposite, in fact. Rarely did the string of euro’s ever get close to even the speed limit as the massive number of vehicles created a bit of a logistical nightmare for the police conducting the cruise. Safety was of utmost importance, and so at times the rally was brought to a halt while officers raced to stop traffic from creating a dangerous rubberneck situation. Kudos to them for pulling off the impossible during rush hour on a sunny Saturday.

The South Florida Exotic Toy Rally is really all about the kids. There is no question that everyone in attendance has the Toys for Tots Foundation first in their hearts. Thousands of toys were donated to the Marine Toys for Tots Foundation, in addition to over $10,000 in funds. Drivers congregated early in the morning at the Westin Diplomat Resort & Spa in Fort Lauderdale to get staged for the rally, and to get a quick sip of coffee. After a short drivers meeting, the crew embarked on the journey to the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Hollywood with a pit-stop on the way at Ferrari of Fort Lauderdale. Shortly after Noon, all of the exotics had arrived in the Hotels parking lot and the donation was made to the United States Marine Corp and loaded into their 7-ton Tactical Vehicle (friggin’ tank). The event culminated with a group lunch and auction, the proceeds of which were all donated to the Toys for Tots Foundation.

Year after year the South Florida Exotic Toy Rally grows larger and larger, with more toys and more money being generously donated by the enthusiasts of South Florida. Not only is the event a great place to meet some fellow enthusiasts and check out some amazing euro-auto’s, but the feeling you get from the knowledge that your efforts will help thousands of children around the country makes the event even more important. If you happen to be in the area next year, please remember to check out this event. Even if you are not, please donate anything you can to the Toys for Tots Foundation in the spirit of the holidays.

Words by: Julian
Photo Credit: Ruckus

West Palm Beach Supercar Block Party

Last Friday night Erik and I decided to leave the old office and checkout Bizspeed.net’s West Palm Beach Supercar Block Party. Up to Palm Beach we went, finding a block of Clematis Street in Palm Beach shut down and filled up with exactly what you would expect; Supercars. All the usual suspects were present, Nissan GTRs, Dodge Vipers, Lamborghinis, Ferraris, and Aston Martins.

With the addition of a DJ and cool white lights, we were treated to a party vibe we don’t normally see at shows. The unique lighting gave us the idea to try out some long exposure shots. With people moving around some interesting ghost images were produced that only added to the pictures.

Check out our “artsy” take on Bizspeed.net’s Supercar Block Party, if you like this look leave a comment below!

Words by: Robert
Photo Credit: Ruckus

Festivals of Speed Orlando

(Photos: Jordan Donnelly)

For the 6th year the famed Festivals of Speed Orlando Motorsports Collection & Display made its descent onto the grasses of the Ritz Carlton Orlando Grande Lakes. Annually, in mid-November hundreds of exotics, antiques, rare and uber-rare autos from every country in the world pack the lawns of the Ritz Carlton Orlando. Festivals of Speed events can be found year-round in many cities around Florida. Expertly run and professionally organized, these events never disappoint.

There are many shows throughout the year that we attend that are stellar with their quantity turnout and quality of vehicle. However, most of these shows are automobile manufacturer or auto genre specific. Festivals of Speed, however, is truly a wonderful mix of antique vehicles, exotics, boats, airplanes, helicopters, and anything else that helps you get somewhere fast, or get nowhere with style. This unique mix of modern, vintage, exotic, custom, and mind boggling automobiles is what makes Festivals of Speed special. Hell, even the Batmobile has been there!

In addition to the countless rare and exciting euro-auto’s in attendance, some that stood out were the Bugatti Veyron 16.4 Grand Sport, the 2012 Lamborghini Aventador, the 2012 Mosler Raptor, and the Lexus LFA. If the stunning collection of priceless automobiles was not enough to keep you entertained for hours, there is also a vendors area where jewelry, art, and other goodies are on display for purchase.

So whats better than a killer car show at a beautiful luxury resort? Not much really. Lest we forget, big props go out to the Festivals of Speed organizers for helping to support the Arnold Palmer Hospital for Children. With Festivals of Speed events happening year-round all over the state of Florida, we encourage you to check one out when the next event is taking place in your neck of the woods, as any Festivals of Speed event is one not to be missed.

Gallery

Simply Clean 3

With Julian and Erik in Vegas this past week for SEMA, it left the interns to head up from home base for Simply Clean 3. Myself and Richard took a leisurely cruse up getting to the show “when it opened,” only to find it packed way past capacity. Cruising down line after line of cars to find parking spots, one thing was clear; the Best of the best in Euro and JDM stance showed up to Simply Clean 3.

On the Euro side of things aside from the usual VW MkIV, MKV, and MKVIs, older models were definitely in style. Richard was shocked to find that he wasn’t the only MkII there, but instead he was only one of four and every one of them was done right. Another crazy surprise was a nice ‘stanced’ out Volvo 240 that almost blended in with the collection of BMW 2002’s and E36’s that were featured on the “hard parking” section.

On the JDM front sea foam was in-style. One of the first cars that caught my eye was a slammed civic painted entirely sea foam green with white wheels. While that description may put a bad taste in your mouth I loved it. On top of that, a few Nissans and Hondas were seen rocking the same vibrant colored wheels.  Then there were the usual bad ass JDM race cars: Skylines, S2000s and WRXs all showed up in force and earned our respect for sure. One black Skyline on green Works specifically turned heads as I didn’t see a single person pass buy it without taking a picture with their camera, phone or at the very least mind.

Simply Clean 3 was an awesome show, over flowing with the freshest cars from the JDM and Euro scenes. I can see this show growing with time into an event that is on par if not larger than SoWo, H20 or the other major euro events, as it draws from two huge car crowds. If you’re located in the South East or willing to make the drive, and have an appreciation for all things stance, then Simply Clean certainly would be a show I suggest marking on your calendar for next year.

Click here for the rest of the Pics

Words: Rob

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