The Granddaddy of Corvette shows turned 45 this year and it’s not showing any signs of ageing. Bloomington Gold just finished their 3rd event at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway and we still maintain that this is the best car show venue anywhere. Over the course of 3 days we experienced Corvettes of all generations, restored and unrestored, racers, and even brand new cars looking for their first owners. Corvettes were on the track, on the judging field, and, of course, out in the famous corral on the infield road course.
There’s so much to see and do at Bloomington Gold that you can’t see it all in one day. We arrived at IMS midday on Thursday. Amid chatter of pending doom and rain on Friday, we perused Corvettes for sale in the Goldmine, visited friends and vendors in the Gold Market, and previewed cars to be judged in the coming days. We even took some GoldLaps riding shotgun in a wild 1967 restomod.
Friday began with a rain shower. Then it rained some more, and then that was followed up by some more rain. Finally, in the later afternoon, the clouds ran out of water and began to part. The day was pretty much a total washout, but it gave us an opportunity to attend some of the indoor events at Bloomington.
First up was an auction and Corvette market talk by Mecum’s John Kraman. There he covered the basics of the auction process and followed up with the current state of the Corvette market. Later in the day we checked in on the restoration seminar at the Schultheis Garage and Classics display. We listened in as Derek Schmidt walk through the process and rough costs associated with a full Corvette restoration. We also hit up Hall of Famer Jerry Burton’s talk on his top 10 Corvette moments. From there it was off to the Gold Collection to see some of the greatest 1967 Corvettes all gathered in one spot. Once the weather began to turn we were able to take a ride along in a 2017 Grand Sport on the infield road course. Keep an eye out for our Performance Data Recorder video of that later this week.
Outside in the pouring rain we have to raise our caps to the judges and owners and that toughed out in the nonstop rain. Many didn’t let the rain keep them from getting their jobs done in the most difficult of conditions. Some cars wore giant shower caps to protect them and creative judges crowded underneath covered cars to get there judging completed. Cars were tucked where ever they’d fit in an attempt to avoid the rain. We’re pretty sure that Noah didn’t encounter that much rain when building his ark.
Saturday was a completely different story in the weather department. While Mother Nature won Friday, Bloomington Gold, the Corvette owners, and the show attendees won on Saturday. The rain was long gone and temps were in the middle 70’s all day. Clouds were just as rare as a Mustang on the IMS grounds. Over the course of this perfect Corvette show day we wandered the swap meet, watched Corvettes tackle the Gold Autocross course, took even more GoldLaps around the 2.5 mile oval track, and then wrapped up the day at the awards ceremony. Final score: Bloomington Gold, 2 – Mother Nature, 1.
Bloomington Gold 2017 was yet another great event at an iconic racing venue. Although rain dominated Friday’s activities, there’s so much to do there that you could have spent all day indoors at the various classes, seminars, and special displays while remaining nice and dry. Now in its 3rd year at IMS, many of the new-show bumps have been removed and the show has evolved into a well-oiled machine. The team at Bloomington Gold has done a great job of keeping the show fresh and all of the new on-track events bring an entirely different facet to the show which no other Corvette show has. We can’t wait for 2018.
As we count down to the 2018 show, enjoy our super awesome 2017 show gallery below.