Master Judge Eric Voigt on How to Judge CCCA Classics

by | Apr 10, 2018 | Events, The Inside Seen


On Saturday, February 25, 2018 the Voigt family welcomed a large turnout of CCCA members for a fun and informative judging seminar. Eric and Linda Voigt transformed their enviable garage-warehouse into a judging workshop, while Joan Voigt, Eric’s mother and CCCA mainstay, helped to welcome club members and their guests. The Voigt family needs no introduction, of course, as their work in the CCCA has spanned decades…but for the record let’s say that CCCA judging, organizing events and being all-around Classic Car ambassadors is in their blood!

Attendees were greeted with coffee and donuts and plenty of “Voigt hospitality” before settling in for the meeting. The day began with a few introductory words from Vicki Zeiger. She opened the meeting with a few business matters before turning the stage over to CCCA Master Judge Eric Voigt.

Judging updates and etiquette
Eric began by introducing a special guest, Corena Dusek, a judge at La Jolla Concours d’Elegance. He went on to discuss authenticity, including topics recently covered with fellow Master Judge and national CCCA Head Judge Steve Babinsky. Eric also shared two significant updates to judging protocol. Judges are now permitted to talk to each other during the judging process, although they continue to judge and score cars independently of their fellow team members. Eric reminded the audience to be discreet in front of a car’s owner — refrain from discussion, and avoid gesturing that may seem to point out issues.

Judges should not discuss point deductions, which leads us to the next update to CCCA protocol. Use of the CCCA judging manual on the field is now allowed, so if judges have questions they can consult their manual for recommended point deductions.

Words of wisdom
As someone who has been “down this road many times before,” Eric provided a few more valuable words of advice about judging:

  1. Be consistent.
  2. Judge each car on its own absolute merits versus comparing it to other cars.
  3. Remember that we are “judging the cars as they were built new” and that sets the 100-point standard.
  4. Many modern restorations elevate cars to “better than original” standards of fit and finish. There are no point deductions for an “over-restoration” as long as authenticity is maintained.

Comments from the audience followed, with many specific aspects of authenticity brought into the conversation. One point was emphasized: cars that bear standards true to original should not suffer point deductions relative to their “better than original” counterparts.

Debut of CCCA’s new judging video
Eric surprised attendees with the news that we would be the first group to view and utilize CCCA’s new judging video. It’s a beautiful production, as Steve Babinksy and CCCA Executive Director Jay Quail guide us through the experience of judging. Texas CCCA member Mikes Ames provided Classics from his collection for the occasion. The video also provided a thoughtful perspective on the role of judges, speaking of them as “ambassadors of CCCA” in this regard. Showing courtesy towards the owner/handler and judged car is part of the judging process.

Revised judging form
The video sequence closely mirrored the elements of CCCA’s recently revised judging form, which Eric described as more streamlined and intuitive. Judges will easily adapt to the new form. While the judging categories have been condensed down from 40 to 22, all the same items are present therein, and they are judged identically.
We put the new form to use that afternoon, as Eric separated us into teams for judging. We focused our attention on the 1947 Cadillac 75 Derham Formal Limousine and 1941 Cadillac 60 Special Sedan. Since he didn’t have an original Classic available, Eric offered up his unrestored (nc) ‘66 Oldsmobile for this exercise as well. Everyone had fun with the process, as Eric promised there were loads of authenticity issues purposefully left to see if we could find them! It was a lively group that reconvened to compare notes and enjoy a fantastic lunch.
We thank the Voigts for their hospitality and all their efforts for this enjoyable and productive event, and thanks to the attendees for their participation! The seminar was a terrific success.

The judging seminar was an event organized by the San Diego/Palm Springs region of the Classic Car Club of America. For additional information and membership details, visit the region’s website at and the national Club’s website at


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