Flourishing Porsche club hosts year’s biggest event in Brevard

Diana Bradley’s 991 GT3 RS with Weissach package (a racing feature) shown on a Blue Ridge Parkway overlook. Photo by Beau Bianchi

“Life is too short for boring cars,” declares Dr. Diana Bradley, a member of the Appalachian Region Porsche Club of America. Bradley, a family-practice physician in East Asheville, says the social experience is what fuels her participation: “The camaraderie is a lot of fun.” Eighty-two club events last year included scenic drives, charity work, and meet-ups for coffees, lunches, and dinners. But the biggest gathering of the year is the organization’s Luft Wasser Porsche Celebration in Brevard, commemorating its fifth anniversary on April 29. 

On that day, says Event Chair Curtis Greenwood, “two-hundred Porsches, representing a wide range of models, will take over downtown Brevard on Main Street.” He expects more than 400 attendees, and club members will enjoy a steep, technical “Devil’s Climb” driving tour comprising portions of the Blue Ridge Parkway and US-276, plus other scenic tours on the region’s winding roads. The event, which is free for spectators, will donate net proceeds from driver-registration fees to The Cindy Platt Boys & Girls Club of Transylvania County (bgctransylvania.org).

(L-R): Curtis Greenwood and his Porsche Panamera, Jim Davis and his Porsche 718 Cayman S, Jim Davis’ wife Nicole Davis and her Porsche Boxter, Jim Moore and his vintage ivory/tangerine Porsche 911 HR, Michael and Kelly Branning and their Blue Porsche 911 Turbo S, Jeff and Kay Gross and their Porsche 911 Targa. The 1947 L16 military airplane in the background was used courtesy of its owner Chuck Huber. Photo by Bueau Bianchi


“Luft Wasser is a chance to do something truly unique for our small town: [host] a high-end event that also boosts the local economy,” says Greenwood, a Brevard-based businessman.

Today, the Appalachian Region PCA encompasses a wide mix of drivers ranging from young professionals to retirees. President Jim Moore has seen the club grow from 94 members in 2015 to more than 400. “Our original goal for Luft Wasser was to attract about 30 owners, but 80 signed up. Now we have to limit it to around 200 because there’s just not enough room to park,” he says. “Last year we had cars from 13 different states and raised over $13,000.”

He explains that the German reference (Luft Wasser means “air water”) represents the two definitive eras of Porsche — which made air-cooled engines until 1999, before transitioning to water-cooled engines in 1999. Moore has owned and raced both types, totaling nine Porsches in all; one of his current drives is a restored ivory-and-tangerine Porsche 911 Hot Rod from 1968 featuring a 1969 911S race engine. 

Bradley has owned four, and a 2021 718 Spyder is her “everyday everything car for running errands.” But the automotive love of her life is the one she affectionately calls MONSTA – which is emblazoned on the license plate. The beautiful 2019 Porsche 991.2 GT3 RS beast lives up to its name with approximately 560 horsepower, 350 pound-feet of torque, three-second zero-to-60 acceleration, and a top speed of 197 miles per hour. 

To put that into perspective, consider that Asheville to Atlanta is 198 miles. 

Bradley, who describes herself as “very competitive,” says racing her Porsches is “thrilling beyond belief.” She participates with other club members in Autocross, a timed competition where drivers navigate around a series of obstacles. “I almost always win my division before it even starts because I’m usually the only female,” she says. “So it’s a division of one.” (She’s organizing a Porsche-owner women’s group to help change that.) 

But Bradley’s favorite pastime is “tracking” her beloved GT3 RS on raceways where performance is everything. “The handling is superb, the throttle response is rock solid and confidence-inspiring, and I can brake pretty late going into a curve and still not get into trouble. But the sound is 80 percent of the enjoyment for me; it’s glorious at 108 decibels.” (That’s 10 decibels louder than some tracks allow.) “It’s a rush,” she says, and means it figuratively and literally. 

These days she takes lessons from a retired Ferrari racer, but Bradley learned to drive at age 10 in a one-ton hay truck with a cantankerous stick shift, and sported a ’68 Pontiac GTO convertible in college. “I’m a gearhead,” she confesses, “and for me, it’s also an emotional thing. My father drives Porsches, and I can only afford mine because my mother, who passed away in 2020, generously left me an inheritance. I miss her so much. Each time I feel the bucket seats hug me, it feels like a hug from Mom.”

That sentiment echoes the family-focused nature of the Luft Wasser event, where all those road curves eventually fade into community.

Greenwood, the father of six-year-old twin boys, drives a black 2013 Porsche Panamera Platinum Edition, a 4-door sedan. “It’s my first Porsche,” he says. “And now my wife is ready for one.” 

The Fifth Annual Luft Wasser Porsche Celebration happens in downtown Brevard on Saturday, April 29, 10am-2pm. Free for spectators. Food trucks and live music will be on site. Find links for driver registration (starting March 6) and donations at luft-wasser.com.

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