Brim­ming with el­e­gance

WITH THE FIRST-EVER GULF CONCOURS HAV­ING JUST WRAPPED UP IN THE UAE, IT AP­PEARS THAT THE MID­DLE EAST IS FIND­ING MORE AND MORE TO LIKE ABOUT CLAS­SIC MA­CHIN­ERY

Virtuozity - - In Depth -

only events often set in lush, pri­vate gar­dens of cas­tles or on large es­tates.

With the com­mer­cial re­al­i­ties of mod­ern times, how­ever, the largest events such as the Con­courso d’el­e­ganza held at the Ville d’este es­tate on the banks of Lake Como in Italy and the Peb­ble Beach Concours in Mon­teray, Cal­i­for­nia are open to the pub­lic, though for a pre­mium price, as ex­clu­siv­ity is a cor­ner­stone to the suc­cess of the Concours tra­di­tion.

While Ville d’este is the world’s long­est con­tin­u­ously run­ning Concours, hav­ing been held since 1929, and the Peb­ble Beach Golf Club in­tro­duced North Amer­ica to the event in 1950, ar­guably the most pres­ti­gious to date is held in Eng­land at Wind­sor Cas­tle with the per­mis­sion of Queen El­iz­a­beth II.

The Concours of El­e­gance be­gan at Wind­sor Cas­tle in 2012 be­fore mov­ing to St James’s Palace in 2013, Hamp­ton Court Palace in 2014 and last year at Her Majesty The Queen’s of­fi­cial res­i­dence in Scot­land, the Palace of Holy­rood­house in Edinburgh.

This year it re­turned to Wind­sor Cas­tle in Septem­ber and was or­gan­ised by the same com­mit­tee that staged the first Concours of its kind in the UAE.

Over 2,000 in­vi­ta­tion-only guests gar­dens.

Among the many shin­ing lights from the likes of Bent­ley, Mclaren, Rolls-royce and As­ton Martin was the world’s most ex­pen­sive car, a 1962 Fer­rari 250 GTO, val­ued at more than $60 mil­lion and owned by Talacrest, the lead­ing clas­sic Fer­rari spe­cial­ist.

Judg­ing was car­ried out over two days with the “Best Be­spoke Limited Edi­tion” and “Best Mod­ern Be­spoke” awards com­pleted on Fri­day and the “Best Clas­sic De­sign” and “Best Clas­sic” cars also go­ing un­der the mi­cro­scope dur­ing Satur­day’s cer­e­mony.

Dur­ing Satur­day’s award cer­e­mony, the best car in the “Best Clas­sic De­sign” cat­e­gory was the 1970 Citroen DS21 IE, fol­lowed by the “Best Clas­sic” win­ner, the 1954 Fer­rari 250 GT Com­pe­ti­tion Spe­ciale owned by Al Yemni Fam­ily.

That said, the event wasn’t en­tirely ded­i­cated to clas­sic cars, with the Gulf Concours pay­ing homage to the fact that the Mid­dle East is a re­gion where new metal is very much ap­pre­ci­ated. Ef­fec­tively rewrit­ing the rule book for a Concours

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