Author Topic: St. Augustine MCA judging  (Read 12804 times)

Offline carguy

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St. Augustine MCA judging
« on: May 11, 2016, 06:10:01 PM »
I showed my 67 GT500 in the Thoroughbred class at the recent St. Augustine National show.  I waited over a week after receiving my results and score sheets to cool down enough to put my thoughts in writing without cursing.

Judging was supposed to start at noon on Saturday.  My plan was to spend the morning giving the car a final detail.  However, as soon as I parked the car at 8:30 AM all 4 judges immediately came to the car and wanted to get started.  I explained I had not had time to give the car a final detail and was assured they would look past this in regards to dust, etc.  I should have known better….

I purchased my Acapulco Blue 67 GT500 with a/c and 4 speed from Bob Gaines.  It came out of Bob’s personal collection.  It was originally restored by Jeff Yergovich as a SAAC Division II/MCA Concours Trailered show car.  Bob purchased the car and completely disassembled it restoring it as a SAAC Division I/MCA Thoroughbred Car.   

After purchasing the car I took it to SAAC 39 in Elkhart Lake, WI where it earned SAAC Division I gold.  I took it to Jeff the following week and we corrected everything noted.  It then went to the MCA event in Springfield the following week earning MCA Concours Trailered gold.  It then went back to Jeff where he attacked every item on the score sheets noted.  He also pulled the engine totally refreshing the engine, engine bay,  as well as the underside (summer 2015).  It was shown at the Muscle Car Nationals in 2015.  Every item highlighted at MCACN  was taken care of by Peter Geisler at Orlando Mustang.  I also had Ed Myer closely look over the car from front to back including the complete under side.  Peter attacked every item high lighted by Ed as well.  Prior to the show Peter show detailed the car throughout including the underside and delivered the car back to me on Thursday prior to the show.

MCA judging is hard to get used to since there is zero communication from the judges on anything they find.  This is especially a problem when the writing on the score sheets is not totally legible.  Looking at how they scored items later I can sure understand why they would not want to explain their deductions face to face.  The scoring reminded me of a Mequiars Shine Concours where the total focus was on obsessive anal shine. 

I thought the standard was how the car would have looked the day the customer picked it up from the dealer.  Do you really think that the dealers detail guy would have been proficient in anal toothbrush and q tip cleaning and there would not be an insignificant water spot somewhere?

What was especially galling was the lack of professional scoring on workmanship and originality where a judging category or assembly comprised 4-5 or more items.   Numerous times I lost 50% or more of total available points for the entire assembly or more for a microscopic piece of dirt or minor imperfection on one of the parts of the assembly.  The weighting of the deductions made no sense whatsoever.

Some examples:

A.    Door Area , scuff plates, Label, Door hardware., and painted surfaces of door area for both doors.  I lost 20% of workmanship points for this entire area for a scratch in the scuff plate, hint of rust at bottom of phillips head screw requiring a magnifying glass for to me to see it, plus 3-4 very minor scratches in stainless.  Looking at all of the components of this assembly a 20% loss for the items noted seems about 5 times more than it should have been.
B.   Kick panels – One kick panel has a very minute scratch.  I lost 50% of the total workmanship, condition, and cleanliness points for both kick panels for one minnute scratch in one kick panel.  Deduction was at least 5 times what it should have been.  What about the overall condition of the kick panels, installation, fasteners, etc?
C.   Roll bar, Package Tray, and Quarter Panels.  Lots of items in this assembly – Lost 33% of workmanship points for the entire assembly for a small tear in the roll bar pad and (finish on rear deck chrome trim – Have no idea)  Again very disappointing weighting of the two deductions compared to the entire assembly being judged.
D.   Headlights, Driving Lights, Parking, Tail, Back-up, and tag lights – Question about the finish of a fog light bezel finish on one fog light cost me 20 % of the total workmanship condition points.  At least 5 times more that it should have been deducted.
E.   Engine Compartment – All items to be natural.  Lost 1/3 of the workmanship condition points for this assembly for note saying accelerator linkage SS with a question mark.  Wonder why a magnet sticks to the linkage?
F.   Carburetor including manifold.  Lost 50% of workmanship points for finches on halwaue (no clue)) and a jam nut not tight.  Again at least 5 times too much of a deduction.
G.   Horns – Lost 100% of workmanship points for the horns for microscopic dirt I have yet to be able to find. Ridiculous.  What happened to the points for fit, finish, and installation?
H.   Underside of hood – Lost 50% of available workmanship points for not enough texture on a small spot on the left hand side of the hood.  If you compare the questioned area to the total area of the hood the deduction is at least 10 times excessive.
I.   Belts – Got hit for 2 points under originality because they could not see the embossing on the fan belt.  Wish they had said something to me as I would have been happy to turn the engine so they could see the embossing.  It would have meant they would have to talk with me though…..
J.   Brake System – Comprises lots of components.  Lost 18% of workmanship points for the entire brake system due to dust boot missing from emergency brake cable.  Hugely excessive deduction.
K.   Wheels, Center Caps, & Lug nuts – They called the black finish light on the inside of the wheels, questioned the perfect lug nut finish, and called a date perfect 50 year old Speedway tire recapped – ridiculous call.  This cost me 40% of the total workmanship points for all of the items in this assembly.  At least 5 times excessive.
L.   Exhaust system:  Lost 25% of the available workmanship points for the 50 year old exhaust saying it needed to be cleaned.  Exhaust system is 50 years old.
M.   Exhaust System:  The car was judged on the ground.  I lost 37.5% of originality points for the exhaust for intermediate resonator should be triple hump, Alignment tab on on H pipe d____? Engine intermediate pipes (no clue)  Funny, Jeff Yergovich, Bob Gaines, and Ed Myer all looked closely at the exhaust system prior to the meet while the car was on a lift and found nothing amiss.

I realize all judging is volunteer and I very much appreciate their efforts.  While we would like to think it is objective it is obviously quite subjective in MCA.  After all of the effort, time, and expense preparing a car for this level of judging it is very disappointing to leave the meet with inconsistent judging results.

I had very much enjoyed showing cars at MCA previously and was looking forward to becoming active with MCA again.  St Augustine cured that……

Dave Brewer
« Last Edit: May 11, 2016, 06:22:49 PM by carguy »

Offline J_Speegle

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Re: St. Augustine MCA judging
« Reply #1 on: May 11, 2016, 06:54:43 PM »
Dave, have you considered posting your thoughts and comments on the MCA site? And have you contacted the Assistant Head Judge for Shelby's about your issues?
Only mentioned this since they are the governing body and oversight for the judging.

http://www.mustang.org/forumdisplay.php/12-Judges-Tent 

Update - I see you posted there also hope you get some responses
« Last Edit: May 11, 2016, 08:35:47 PM by J_Speegle »
Jeff Speegle

Anything worth doing is worth doing concours ;)

Offline Coralsnake

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Re: St. Augustine MCA judging
« Reply #2 on: May 11, 2016, 09:49:55 PM »
Dave,

I appreciate seeing your post. As you know, there is more information available to owners than ever before. I am not directly involved in MCA judging, but I am aware of several other incidents of a similar nature.

I am not going to share my feelings on your recent experience in open forum. However, if you have a former SAAC D1 car, I would have expected different results.

What was you final score and outcome?

I have spoken with the SAAC Concours Chairman specifically about weighted judging (deductions) in SAAC. This will be an area of focus. I dont want to see people nit picked to death. The same goes for cleanliness. It is important, but can be taken to extremes.

Personally, I know its really difficult when it is your car. I have been there.

As the SAAC Head Judge for 1968s, I promise you, I will do my best to make sure the best cars get rewarded. As a judge, I want people to walk away encouraged, not beaten.  I think consistency needs to be established.

There are many problems, but myself and others are working to rectify them. It will be a long process. I see some sort of unification in the future.

I would encourage others to share their experiences. People that want to brush these under the rug are not acting in the best interest of the hobby in my opinion.


« Last Edit: May 11, 2016, 09:57:07 PM by Coralsnake »

Offline carguy

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Re: St. Augustine MCA judging
« Reply #3 on: May 11, 2016, 10:47:21 PM »
Pete

Good to hear from you.

I lost 37 points which were mostly BS deductions. I received a bronze award which went into the trash as soon as I got it.

Dave Brewer


Offline ruppstang

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Re: St. Augustine MCA judging
« Reply #4 on: May 12, 2016, 09:42:37 AM »
Dave,
I was the scribe on your car and I apologize for the poor hand writing, I was struggling to hear the three other judges and could not sit down and do a better job. We were on your car for all most four hours and at the end I did not remember you having any questions. Have you contacted any of the other judges with your concerns?
You have a very special car and I very much enjoyed learning from it. I have a couple 67-68 MCA Concours trailered cars that I often show, I have never failed to receive a gold on them. If I were to show them in the Thoroughbred class I would be thrilled to get a bronze. That is such a tough class to even place in. I do understand your confusion after receiving a gold in SAAC division 1. It is very difficult to compare awards between different clubs and shows they have different standards, judges and conditions.
I hope you will reconsider showing your car in the MCA as it is one of very few at this level.
Marty Rupp
 

Offline carguy

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Re: St. Augustine MCA judging
« Reply #5 on: May 12, 2016, 11:44:47 AM »
Marty

I did ask when the judging was finished if anything stood out. Jeff Mayes abruptly told me the judges do not discuss the judging and I would have to look at my score sheets to find out what was deducted. Very unusual attitude when most clubs are doing everything possible to help participants improve their cars. He did reiterate that thoughbred standards were substantially higher than concours trailered. Interesting comment. I totally understand that all parts must be original, finishes must be correct, etc. I lost very few points on originality. So my question is what standard of anal detailing are you looking for above concours trailered standards? Why?

My main objection was the total lack of understanding of proper weighting of deductions on my judging sheets. If the judging requires a high level of professionalism on the part of the owner then the judges should display that same level of professionalism in the scoring. At St Augustine that did not happen in my case.

Offline nham3407

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Re: St. Augustine MCA judging
« Reply #6 on: May 12, 2016, 11:49:14 AM »
I cannot speak for a fellow club member and have advised him to review this post as well.  He drove 1400 miles trailering his 68 GT500KR to St. Augustine in Concourse trailered. This is a multiple MCA Gold car. The Bronze he received to say was at the best very disheartening to him. 

We all can appreciate some variation in the feedback, but from multiple MCA Gold's in the recent past to the other end of the spectrum in the same class does raise a concern.

Again, I have know vested interest in this issue, but he is seriously questioning his interest in showing any more and just keeping the car for his own pleasure.

I regret to say that I have heard this on more than one occasion from more than one high caliber car owner.  My concern is that this then removes these cars from the show field and the makes the hobby more difficult to attract and retain members.
« Last Edit: May 12, 2016, 11:52:03 AM by nham3407 »
67 GT S-Code, San Jose, 06/67
72 Mach 1, Dearborn, 01/72
68 Merc. Cyclone, Lorain, 06/68

Offline TLea

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Re: St. Augustine MCA judging
« Reply #7 on: May 12, 2016, 01:31:47 PM »
Dave, I had sad to hear your experience was not a positive one and disheartening. As judges it reflects negatively on something most strive hard to not have happen. I am hearing more often of late car owners feeling that they or their cars have been treated abusively not just at MCA but elsewhere too. I know you to be a gentleman and kindhearted person and to write this is not just reactive and irresponsible.
One of the things that is not clear to owners (or restorers) is if there is any kind of appeal process and if so what it is. It would be beneficial to both clubs and participants to make this clear immediately after the car is judged. That way the process is clearly defined and can be followed. The other issue is the expectation of owner to challenge the ruling. As mentioned Dave took his car to those who are thought to be experts in Shelby restoration. I don't think Dave would be offended if I said he was not a Shelby authenticity expert. Because of this an owner needs to rely on his restorer to support the details of the restoration. I have been told recently restorers are not permitted to participate in any appeal process.
Ultimately things need to change. Too many nice people are being bullied and leaving what should be a rewarding experience for all. Its not about the award (although for some owners it may be), some of my best friends have come from cars I've judged fairly and car did not receive any or lesser award but owner felt respected and educated in the process
Tim Lea  Shelby concours judge MCA, SAAC, Mid America

Offline caspian65

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Re: St. Augustine MCA judging
« Reply #8 on: May 12, 2016, 03:11:32 PM »
T-bred is a tough class to judge and even tougher to maintain consistency.  A lot of concours judges will struggle judging T-bred and have a hard time determining the boundaries.  While we have attempted many times to make the judging sheets easier, there is still a lot of room for interpretation on the show field.

I agree with Tim that there should be a more clearly defined appeal process.  Although, this introduces challenges as those that would review the sheets will not be able to see the car first-hand.  Additionally, it's a very time-consuming proposition that may or may not have a positive outcome.
Charles Turner - MCA/SAAC Judge
Concours Mustang Forum Admin

Offline mikeljgt500kr

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Re: St. Augustine MCA judging
« Reply #9 on: May 12, 2016, 10:15:50 PM »
I am really very disappointed to hear such things as this, far too familiar to me.
I don't always downshift, but when I do it is near a Prius so they can hear me hurting the environment.

Offline Laurie S.

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Re: St. Augustine MCA judging
« Reply #10 on: May 12, 2016, 10:26:31 PM »
I also went through this for several years when I first began pushing for recognition of the western members.  It was bad enough at one show that my friends said to stay away from my car while it was being judged.  I wanted to see what would happen and halfway through judging my car, I walked up and the judges recognized me.  At that point, the number of points being deducted went through the roof.  My coupe went from a Gold with three points deducted to a Silver with almost the lowest score for that award.  The shows were only six months apart.  There was even worse treatment a couple years later at a show. 


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Offline Scott Fuller

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Re: St. Augustine MCA judging
« Reply #11 on: May 13, 2016, 01:08:34 AM »
Resonators should be double-hump, not triple-hump.

Scott
68 "135" Mustang, 68.5 Blck Mustang CJ Cnvrt, 68 Rd HCS (fact 428), 68 Ac Bl Mustang GT Cnvrt, 68 Ylw GT500KR Cnvrt, 68 Hlnd Grn GT500KR Cnvrt, 68 Gld G.T. 500 Cnvrt, 68 Ryl Maroon Mustang Sprint Cpe, 68.5 Hlnd Grn Fstbck, 68.5 Ylw Mustang Fstbck. Visit my website www.scottfullerreproduction

Offline carguy

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Re: St. Augustine MCA judging
« Reply #12 on: May 13, 2016, 11:22:27 AM »
Scott, thanks for the clarification. I figured they were wrong in their deduction for the exhaust.

I had been warned by a number of knowledgeable people that mca judging at the higher levels was highly political and not consistent. I felt good though when I learned one of the judges was mca president, Jeff Mays, as well as head judge Allen Stewart. One would assume that the judging would be fair and without agenda given their positions. Turned out to be another example of my trying to read a book by it's cover. The book turned out to be totally different than it's cover.  Hard Lesson learned again.


Offline TLea

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Re: St. Augustine MCA judging
« Reply #13 on: May 13, 2016, 12:18:16 PM »
I cannot speak for a fellow club member and have advised him to review this post as well.  He drove 1400 miles trailering his 68 GT500KR to St. Augustine in Concourse trailered. This is a multiple MCA Gold car. The Bronze he received to say was at the best very disheartening to him. 

We all can appreciate some variation in the feedback, but from multiple MCA Gold's in the past
It would be beneficial if this car was identified so neither MCA or those judging are wrongfully accused. I was not at St Augustine but I thought only GT 500 KR was first time showing. Was this by any chance a gold 68 GT 500?
Maybe Marty can elaborate or the other MCA officials that are monitoring this thread
Tim Lea  Shelby concours judge MCA, SAAC, Mid America

Offline RJC

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Re: St. Augustine MCA judging
« Reply #14 on: May 13, 2016, 12:38:28 PM »
Just found this thread and found it quite interesting. I am a newbie to this forum but not to the concours process, both SAAC and MCA.

Seems like I had a better experience with the judging process than others but in the end, a similar result.


I attended the national MCA meeting in St Augustine, Florida as well with my recently restored KR convertible in the concours trailered class. 

For me, the judges couldn’t have been more cordial and professional in their demeanor.  They eagerly included me in their technical discussions and did an excellent job explaining the different subtleties of my car including the good and bad points per their expertise which appeared to be quite fair and impartial. They made a potentially very painful process quite enjoyable and informative. I left with a good feeling about the entire judging procedure.

I am no expert regarding the concours restoration of a Shelby by any means, but I do have experience on both sides of the concours judging process. In the recent past, I have been a helper judge at SAAC in the 1968 group and currently own an MCA and SAAC gold KR. In addition, during the restoration of my KRs, I took a very active role in learning the nuances of assembly line, NOS and reproduction parts and purchased many on my own, obviously with help.

In my novice opinion the vast majority of the “issues” with my KR were quite minor and mostly subjective, sometimes appearing to mix concours rules with Thoroughbred class rules: non etched headlights, incorrect floor jack, non Autolite shocks, and steering wheel color not dark enough etc. The main judge even remarked that there would be minimal or no deduction for many of these. Even the overly buffed bumpers were 80% fine having only shine through on their tips, so I felt confident the deductions for the deficits would be fairly proportionate. The inclement weather necessitated covering my car with plastic to keep the elements at bay. Unfortunately the residue from my plastic car cover leached onto the front letter panel paint and was probably the most significant issue. The judges kindly charted no deduction for my stupidity.

I recognize that my KR is far from perfect but I was quite confident after the judging experience that I had a car worthy of a gold award. I was sincerely surprised with the silver award and when the judging sheet came back with a -30 points, that seemed out of proportion to the my experience. For example:

1. I lost 3 full points out of a total of 5 points in authenticity for the poor bumper buffing which really only affected 20% or so in the bumper/guard/brackets/hardware section. What would the deduction be for an incorrect of damaged bumper? 

2. “Radio Screws should not be black”. I lost 50% of the total radio points for that seemingly insignificant issue.

3. “Pitted hubcaps” were penalized approximately 40% of the total workmanship of the tires, wheels and hubcaps section. That seems excessive to me. In my opinion there was minimal pitting and while I understand that judging is subjective, I wonder what the deduction would be if I had 10 spokes instead? Couldn’t be much more.

4. I lost a full point for sand in the carpet. True, there was some dirt on the driver’s side floor as I did have to drive the car to the parking spot and that is my fault. In addition, on Friday, there was a torrential downpour and I was much more concerned about water spraying in thru the window gaps and onto the interior carpet and ruining the dash or electrical components. The Friday downpour was so significant that water entered my engine compartment and smudged my battery OK sticker (no deduction for that, fortunately). I did not have a vacuum cleaner so I picked up as much as I could. It just seems that an outdoor concours should have some accommodation for a little dirt.

5. Several controversial issues like incorrect font on the KR stripe and an incorrect fender badge were noted, but not deducted for which seemed fair at the time. These items are items indistinguishable from my SAAC and MCA gold KR which had no deductions for this. But then I see that I lost something like 6 points (out of the 21 allowed for the gold award) for miscellaneous "not previously deducted" issues. It makes me wonder if some of the “non- deducted” and more controversial issues were gathered in this category to avoid scrutiny.

6. lost 2 of 5 points for minor carb finishing details.

7. Lost 1 of 2 points for an incorrect double crimp oil filter, which I'm told is the correct filter.

8. lost 1 of 4 points for shocks, not Autolite. I think that is a Thoroughbred requirement. 

As you can see, I am quite baffled by the concours scoring of my KR which appears not only grossly subjective, but excessive and even punitive. I fear a hidden agenda with my scoring. My car has since been evaluated by a well respected Shelby restorer who said that there are some issues with the car but it is clearly deserves a gold.   

I am in the process of appeal with the MCA leadership, Jeff Mays, Allen Stewart and Ron Wheeler. My fingers are crossed.
                                             
                                                  Sincerely,

                                                  Bob Cassling