Bob Schweitzer has a thing for GTOs. He just sees a power-packed Poncho and his vision goes blurry. Before he knows it, the four-wheeled beast ends up in his garage and he doesn't remember a thing about how it got there. It's a disease many of us would pay to have.
When you ask him why he has an extended garage full of top-of-the-line Gran Turismo Omologatos, you get some pretty basic rhetoric from him. At first we figured he'd tell us "The first one just followed me home," or the classic, "It found me. I didn't find it." Well, the former could be true, as that's happened to all of us at least once in our lives… but never with anything as sweet as one of these Ponchos. Bob tells us that with each purchase "the price was right." So with that, we sat down with him and listened to the tale (or is it tales?) of his two ultra-rare '71 Lucerne Blue Judge hardtops.
Bob comes from a Poncho-bred family, and scored his first example of the proud GM brand way back in high school. A four-speed '76 Sunbird isn't what you'd call a muscle car, but the fresh-faced car aficionado was overall pleased with its semi-sporty ride and looks from the get-go. It was with that purchase that he decided to set out on a quest to build himself a small arsenal of Pontiac's top street performers.
Since it was born with a manual trans, a Hurst shifter sits between Lucy No. 1’s blue Comf
He soon cashed in and got his first muscle ride—a sweet, stripped-down '69 GTO. The sparsely optioned Goat was exactly what the doctor prescribed, and gave him a taste of the power that Ponchos are known for. And low and behold, 30 years later, that inspiring ride still occupies a spot not only in Bob's heart, but also in his garage.
Fast forward a few years. Bob builds a garage at the homestead big enough to house his growing family… of Pontiac muscle. All styles of cars come and go, but the love for GTOs is ever-present. Poncho rides from all years have a stay at the family abode, but his '69 is there for the long haul.
However by Y2K, things start getting crazy at Bob's GTO bunkhouse.
In the spring of 2000, Bob spied a four-speed '69 Carousel Red Judge for sale in the local newspaper. He had never owned a Goat with the Judge option, but had always been interested in obtaining one. He called the telephone number twice, hoping that the vehicle was still for sale. Finally, three days later, the owner got back to him. The seller started describing the ride to him over the phone… and soon Bob realized he knew the car from seeing it at a local car show. A deal was made on the spot.
Next, a Polar White '70 made its way to Bob's growing Goat farm. It was a GTO he spied parked on a property in view from the road. Over time Bob got antsy, and wanted to know if the car was for sale because it never moved from its parking spot. It had the stripes and callouts, but he just wasn't sure if it was a true Judge. He finally got a hold of the property owner who told him the GTO belonged to his son.
After weeks of waiting, he received a call from the young owner. The Poncho was definitely for sale. Interestingly enough, the asking price was low even for a basic GTO. Judge or not, Bob pulled the trigger on the deal. It wasn't till months later that he received the PHS documentation stating that those stripes and callouts were the real deal.
Since he owned both a '69 and a '70 Judge, Bob wanted to finish off the trilogy and find a sweet '71. Since less that 400 of these rides were made, he figured this would be the hardest of them all. He checked the local websites and want ads for the next few months. In December 2002, he placed an ad on a GTO forum and was quickly contacted by the owner of the first car that would become part of his Lucerne Blue Judges pair—the vinyl-top four-speed car.
Lucy No. 1 was built with options that made it very desirable back in the day. An M-22 tra
The rear spoiler (standard issue on all Judges) adds some needed rear down-force and a who
Lucy No. 2 is a much more spartan ride, built with a Turbo 400 automatic and few creature