CLASSIC MOTOR SHOW
All the action from the Lancaster Insurance Classic Motor Show at the NEC.
With 71,000 visitors, the 2016 Lancaster Insurance Classic Motor Show at Birmingham’s NEC was the most popular in the event’s 32-year history. And with 2500 classic cars and motorcycles spanning one million square feet, it wasn’t hard to see why. Squeezing it all into a single day is nigh-on impossible.
Our strategy was simple – head for the Mini-centric area in Hall 2, where some of the country’s most prominent Mini clubs were out in force. Making its NEC debut was the Cooper Sport 500/Mini 2000 Register, which included three of the Rover press and publicity LOEplated cars in its line-up. Two were gold Knightsbridge models; Andy Mynott’s car is to Japanese spec, while Oli Neville-Payne’s was built to European spec then switched to right-hand-drive.
Alongside, the impressive British Mini Club stand played host to Paul Moran’s Downton Cooper, Paul Smith’s Super, and - to complete a hat trick of Pauls - Paul Besant’s ex-police MkII Cooper S. Brett Guest’s ‘Dirty Girty’ custom Thirty was a crowd-pleaser, while Trevor and Janet Ripley’s ‘59 Mini was joined by their amazing ice cream van/ Pick-up, recently part of The Mini Story display in Munich.
Also present were The Italian Job, The Mini Moke Club and Mini Cooper Register. Five cars were included on the Register’s display, including Simon Joslin’s replica of the ‘65 Monte winning car, Tanya Field’s 1275 GT and Pete Flanagan’s Janspeed Unipower, celebrating 50 years of the Unipower GT.
Elsewhere, Andy Nash’s beautifully restored 1966 Mini Traveller came through to take the coveted Meguiar’s Club Showcase title for 2016, while close by, tickets were selling well for our Mini in the Park Mini Equinox raffle car. There was also a debut for British Motor Heritage’s MkI shell (see our news pages for more).
And of course, there were the big names. On the Wheeler Dealers Live Stage, host Mike Brewer was joined by fellow TV personalities Edd China, Ant Anstead and Fuzz Townshend. There were also appearances by British Racing icon Sir Stirling Moss, Engine Addicts’ Jimmy De Ville, US reality star Jesse McClure, and Richard Noble OBE. Even rally legend Paddy Hopkirk was present to join in with the fun at what is surely the best classic car event in the UK – one in which the Mini plays a starring role.
Oli Neville-Payne’s rare Knightsbridge.
Paul Moran with his Cooper, and Paul Smith with his Super. There’s a poem in there somewhere...