WITH CRAIG JACKSON AT THE HELM, THE COMPANY IS CELEBRATING 49 SUCCESSFUL YEARS IN THE COLLECTOR CAR HOBBY. CRAIG IS ALSO AN AVID CAR COLLECTOR, AWARD-WINNING RESTORER AND RACING ENTHUSIAST.
I think it’s safe to say that 2020 hasn’t exactly turned out like any of us thought it would. It’s been a tough time for many, and we here at Barrett-Jackson sincerely hope that you and yours have remained healthy and safe during these unprecedented times.
After hosting our best Scottsdale Auction ever in January – the best Barrett-Jackson auction in history, in fact – COVID-19 hit. Like so many businesses, we had to try and make decisions based on ever-changing waves of information, restrictions and concern.
Out of an abundance of caution, we decided early on not to hold our Palm Beach event in April, as well as our Northeast event in June. We wanted to take the time to learn about this pandemic and how to best adapt our business during it. We carefully observed what other industries were doing and the lessons learned along the way. Of paramount importance to us was the health of our customers, our fans and our team.
In the meantime, we held two very successful online auctions in May and July, featuring many notable No Reserve sales and a number of world auction records set. Most importantly, we teamed up with NASCAR team owner Richard Childress to auction a very special Dale Earnhardt race car, which raised $425,000 to help with COVID-19 relief efforts.
But through it all, the question we were most often asked was when we could get back to a live event.
All the while, we’ve been working with our partners and local officials at our various venues to determine what the next step might be. We wanted do things right when we returned to live events, with our guests’ health and safety being at the forefront. Much time and effort was put into evaluating the different issues that presented themselves, but it soon became clear that a live event held at our home base, WestWorld, provided the best level of comfort and control, and this special Fall Auction came to be.
The Barrett-Jackson team has worked diligently with officials from the State of Arizona and the City of Scottsdale to implement as many health and safety precautions as possible, and great attention has been paid to physical distancing and new paperless and contactless processes. The city itself has gone to great lengths at WestWorld, installing air and surface-cleaning ion generators and UV lights, along with other technology. Much of this was accomplished through the federal CARES Act, and it’s a great example of federal, state and local governments working together to get businesses back to work.
The Fall Auction will actually be what I call a “hybrid” – a combination of a live in-person and online auction, utilizing our new, more streamlined online bidding platform. There may be those who want to come to the auction for just one day to look at the vehicles in person, but perhaps bid online or by phone during the entire event. Or stay all three days! The Fall Auction schedule will allow ample time in the evenings to enjoy some of the relaxing activities and world-class dining for which Scottsdale is known.
An exciting new auction layout will be in place that I’m confident will not only make attendees feel comfortable, but will also provide the same great Barrett-Jackson experience you’ve come to know and love.
I’m incredibly grateful to have received the support of so many consignors, bidders and sponsors leading up to this exciting new event. Many sponsors and exhibitors will be with us at the Fall Auction – with their displays appropriately distanced. There will be plenty of food and beverage available, and you can even enjoy an adrenalin-pumping Dodge Thrill Ride on the Barrett-Jackson Performance Track. Of course, you’ll also see our usual spectacular and diverse array of automobilia and collector cars – most offered with No Reserve.
We’re excited to share our collector car passion with you in person at the Fall Auction and look forward to seeing you there, masks and all!