THE FINEST COACHWORKS AT THE PREMIER CONCOURS SUISSE – 3

Finally the great day had arrived. On Sunday the endeavour began seriously, as my friend and I were cleaning his Hispano before the judges started their work. I was looking at these wonderful cars gathered in the yard of the Coppet Castle, one of the most significant Swiss castles.  More than fifty automobiles were participating in this event, divided into twelve classes, defined by Chief Judge Adolfo Orsi and Honorary and Chief Judge Ed Gilbertson, the great Ferrari expert. Twelve prizes plus five special ones, such as Best Line Award, Miura’s 50th Anniversary prize, etc., were going to be… Continue reading

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THE FINEST COACHWORKS AT THE PREMIER CONCOURS SUISSE – 2

The sight of all these automotive jewels coming from the past, with the beautiful XVIIIth century castle as  a backdrop, was incredible. I allowed myself to have a nice walk among all these beauties, admiring their wonderful shapes handcrafted by the best craftsmen from the 1930-1960 era. The Pourtout bodied Talbot Lago was so sporty and elegant and at the same time la crème de la crème of Pourtout styling, while the unusual Thrupp & Maberly bodied Hispano H6C was looking perfect in all aspects.

A bit further there was a Swiss UFO, a 1920 PIC PIC R2 which has retained its original Parisian torpedo body. This car is powered by a patented sleeve valve engine and fitted with a 14 disc clutch (yes 14!), anyway it’s exotic specifications is too complex to cite here. Next to the Pic Pic, Jaap Braam Ruben‘s early… Continue reading

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THE FINEST COACHWORKS AT THE PREMIER CONCOURS SUISSE – 1

A while ago the organizer of the Swiss Concours d’Elegance, Mathias Doutreleau, contacted me (thanks to Rosemarijn Atalante) to ask if I was interested to become part of the organizing staff of his new Concours, as a contributor as well as Master of Ceremony. What a great honor, being part of such an important event and furthermore being among so many famous connoisseurs. It was like a dream come true.

Mathias Doutreleau is really a very enthusiastic and dynamic organizer. Many people know him as member of staff of very important concours and race meetings, such as the Quail Lodge, Le Tour de France Automobile and many others. He immediately saw great potential for his Geneva event. With the help of many important sponsors, such as Zenith watches, Watchonista and Rolls-Royce, this first edition of the Swiss Concours d’Elegance was surely to become a success…. Continue reading

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SOME MORE CONCOURS DANDIES

I have showed you the muddy part, so now we head over to the luxurious part of het Loo, the iconic palace were most jewels were parked. I think next time the awards ceremony should be here again instead of the stage on the muddy field. My walk around the Palace was at the end of the concours, so thats why is looks a bit abandoned with not all cars present anymore… Look at that De Tomaso, 2000GT, Regal Underslung Racer, Daytona prototype, Bentley 3 liter and Amilcar with a secret under the hood… It has… Continue reading

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THIS YEARS BEST CONCOURS DANDIES OF HET LOO

As promised a nice overview of all the award winning cars of this years Concours d’Elegance Palace het Loo. The Best of show winner together with the 2000GT were for me deserved winners, but obviously it is always hard to choose between so many great cars. Since the 2000GT did not win an award, today I give the 2000GT the award for best designed car!

Sadly there was not price for the most dirty car of the event, because that would have been my award… Continue reading

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CHEEKY TRIAL RUINED THE GARDENS OF PALACE HET LOO-2

The latest report was all about Amillion and its cheeky performance at the Concours Palace Het Loo, but of course there was much more to admire! Sadly I have not had enough time to see much, but still enough highlights to mention. The gardens of Palace Het Loo are royal, so plenty of choice for everyone, from American bad boys to the most elegant and classy dandies. I guess the most brutal beasts were the RR Merlin V12 Spitfire 27 litre Bentley special, the blue Renault Nervasport des Records (record car) and the little robot car… Sadly I have not seen the little car, which was said to have more personality than Amillion. I heard it was flying and opening its doors and interacting with people, but… Continue reading

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CHEEKY TRIAL RUINED THE GARDENS OF PALACE HET LOO-1

Two days before we were still busy testing and fixing Amillion, but just in time the job was done with the help of the magic hands of a Bugattist. Time to pack my CHAPAL helmet and goggles, because the Concours d’Elegance was waiting for a very cheeky and special little sportscar, which planned not to leave the concours before it had given its own show… Before arriving I drove the last 40 km in Amillion on wonderful country roads, after we had left the motorway and dropped her off the trailer. The horses underneath the bonnet of Amillion were excited and restless. The little race monster did it… As I was playing a bit with the throttle the tachometer did not stay at its usual maximum speed of 90 km/h (the Amilcar kind of 90 km/h is in reality not more than 75-80). Usually at a speed of ’90 km/h’ the engine starts to scream a bit and I calm her down, but this time that was not the case. From ’90’ the needle went up to ‘115 km/h’… Continue reading

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GET READY FOR CONCOURS D’ELEGANCE CHANTILLY ARTS & ELEGANCE RICHARD MILLE!

For the CHB readers who will also come to Chantilly, click here for a very extended impression of previous year’s edition in the fantastic grounds of Chateau Chantilly. What an event! This is classic car history at its finest and even more!

Chantilly is also famous for its equestrian events and for the participants the organization had staged last year a wonderful evening show with horses. I really look forward to the 6th of September and hope to meet you there!

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GRANDIOSE PEBBLE BEACH CONCOURS D’ELEGANCE 2015

Miura has to wait another day, because today the results of the Pebble Beach Concours are revealed! So, sit back and enjoy!

The weather was fine, the people were great and of course the cars, or better say automobiles, were grandiose… as always! The judges have chosen their Best of Show, Best of Show Nominees, Most Elegant Awards Winners, Special Awards Winners and Class Winners.

Best of Show this year was again one of those great European marques from the past, Isotta Fraschini, with the grand 1924 Tipo 8A with coachwork by F. Ramseier & Cie of Worblaufen, Switzerland.

When this automobile was sold at the Artcurial auction at Retromobile in February 2014 and bought by parties which included Rob Myers, chairman and founder of RM, it was obvious that… Continue readinghttp://crankhandleblog.com

WAS THE FIRST CONCEPT CAR EVER THE BROOKE SWAN CAR?

This extraordinary ‘Swan Car’ – a 1910 Brooke 25/30 HP – is just all about madness! A bizarre peace of art with its very special and FUN gadgets! Possibly the first concept car in the world! The car was built by JW Brooke and company in Lowestoft, England. It was a combination of both car and boat, which was what the Brooke’s manufactured. By the way it must have cost more than three times a Rolls-Royce Silver Ghost…! By now it’s just priceless!

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The special one-off vehicle was commissioned by the wealthy ‘mad hatter’ (Alice in Wonderland term) Robert Nicholl Matthewson from Scotland. The genius wasn’t bored when he placed the order for the swan car, but wanted to… Continue reading