Saturday morning was cloudy and a little cool for Central Florida, but with 43 cars pre-registered for the event, a little weather wasn’t going to stop anyone. The Florida Citrus Region 2020 “Heritage Tour” started at Porsche of South Orlando to tour Central Florida back roads from the dealership to Inverness and the Fisherman’s Cove Restaurant west of Inverness. As an extra added attraction, members could pre-register for an exciting airboat tour of the Withlacoochee River and its birds, alligators and turtles. “Captain Dave” provided a great hour-long ride with some great sights at Wild Bill’s Airport Tours.
The “heritage” part of the Heritage Tour focused on transaxle cars and air-cooled cars – the cars that brought Porsche up to the modern times of the Boxster and 996 – and on. The group consisted of one 356C, ten air-cooled 911’s and 912’s, and fourteen transaxle cars. In the mix was not one, not two, but four 924S Special Edition cars. Of course, Sparky, our white 87 924S, was there and had the privilege of leading the first group out on the tour. The fact that one-third of the Porsches were transaxle cars was quite a statement – transaxles are real Porsches and welcome at Porsche Club events.
The tour route took us through parts of Florida that tourists – and many residents – never see. Once we got out of the busy Interstate Four neighborhood, a slow drive though Windermere then snaked through growing small communities, ranch land and farm land to Inverness and SR 44, headed west toward Crystal River and the Gulf of Mexico. Before getting to the Gulf, though, we passed over the Withlacoochee River and soon stopped at the Fisherman’s Cove for lunch.
Porsche of South Orlando provided an open house with a catered COVID-safe buffet breakfast for all in attendance. A spotlight was the number 44 1983 944 race car that was actually raced when new in SSGT “back in the day.” With its three Cicie lights on the bumper and period-correct markings, the car was restored by Stan Kostewicz of Stashu’s Import Car Service in Longwood.
The first of four run groups left at 9 AM with Sparky and two Special Edition 924S’s behind. Three other groups left at fifteen minute intervals to create a suitable gap. It was a wonderful thing to see our 944’s and 924S’s driving a PCA tour front-to-rear with our newer 911, Boxster, Cayman and such Porsches. The second group was led by the #44 944 race car.
Lunch at the Fisherman’s Cove was great Florida seafood prepared quickly – and quite tasty! The small restaurant was ready for us, and the front of the place was absolutely “infested” with Porsches!
After lunch, those who registered for the airboat tour drove a couple of minutes back east on SR 44 to Wild Bill’s Airboat Tours. The airboats were designed to hold about twenty passengers, powered by a Chevrolet LS6 Supercharged engine – of course, we had to ask! Captain Dave gave us a great tour with lots of birds, turtles and even a few alligators taking advantage of the warm afternoon sun. The scenery was magnificent, and the ride was smooth and exciting.
See the galleries below for photos of this great run!
Porsche of South Orlando – our starting point