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Palm Beach, 27th of January

The 2013 Cavallino Classic is history, the 22nd edition of this annual Ferrari meeting came to an end today with the multi-marque concours at the exclusive Mar-a-Lago club of real estate tycoon Donald Trump. Although officially a concours with judges and awards this is more a relaxed meeting in the gardens of the club where the cars could be admired by the spectators and owners. After a more serious event the day before the ambition of most owners and restorers were satisfied and the judges did not need to go so deep into details as many cars (at least the Ferraris) were known from the day before or earlier displays.

Compared to the last year more classic Ferrari from the concours at the Breakers came over to the club as most of the cars of the upper lawn were present, the number of cars required a closer parking than in previous years as the Ferrari were lined up in three rows on the highest point of the terrain. As the cars were parked as they came in rather than by plan, by chance a very illustrious trio of former celebrity owned Ferrari were lined up side by side. The two cars from the former King Leopold of Belgium and his wife were joined by the 375 America of the late Italian automotive king Gianni Agnelli that was placed the day before at the Pinin Farina special display. Again two of the 250 GT LWB TdF were displayed (0903GT and 1321GT) along the Ferrari 375 MM (0382AM). Furthermore the 212 Export Vignale Spyder (0090E) and the matching Touring Berlinetta (0108E) were joined today by the 212 Inter Pinin Farina Cabriolet (0235EU) that was displayed the day before at the Ferrari Classiche tent.

But this gathering is not just for Ferrari as several other cars are displayed as well. After a strong Aston Martin year in 2012 this year just a few British sports cars with the winged badge were present in the year of the centenary of the traditional marque. The so-called reunion of Rolls-Royce featured several models ranging from the Phantom II to the new Ghost.

The Bugatti armada that was “banned” the day before in a corner of the lower lawn was prominently displayed pool-side along the other pre-war cars. Two Bugatti T57 joined in, a Coupé bodied by Paul Née and a wonderful two-toned Stelvio brought over from its nearby home in West Palm Beach. Just a few days ago we reported on an earlier visit to the Simeone Collection that features a rare DuPont Le Mans Speedster, another model of this type was present at Palm Beach today. The most beautiful duo of this class was an Talbot-Lago and a Lancia demonstrating the different design philosophies of Italy and France. Whereas the Figoni&Falaschi bodied Talbot-Lago featured flamboyant lines with a very dominant grill the Pinin Farina design of the Lancia Astura was far less thrilling but not less elegant, this was also underlined by the two-tone metallic colour combination of the Talbot compared to the subtle grey on the Lancia. Both cars were favourites of the visitors and the Talbot-Lago was awarded Best of Show at the end of the day by the Jury.

More sportive were the genes of the trio of Alfa Romeo. The two 8C (a Touring and a Zagato Spyder) seen the days before on the race track and at the Breakers were joined by a very low lined 6C 1750 SS, the car was rebodied in 1936 by an unknown coachbuilder and kept this body to the present day, today finished in black with purple upholstery, its design was certainly influenced by the racing 8-cylinder Alfas of that period.

Just around the corner was a duo of Maserati was displayed, both A6 with a Fantuzzi Spyder body and a Zagato Coupé, the later with the double bubble that is usually not seen on the “normal” A6 Zagato Coupés but on many other cars of this coachbuilder.

As rare was the duo of Fiat 8V on show, the one was one of the Supersonic cars displayed in Pebble Beach 2 years ago in the preservation class, the other a one-off Vignale Coupé.
After a glass of champagne in the morning and the judging the award were presented after the dinner in the ball room of the club, a lot of silverware was given to the proud owners in the different classes. In typical American style the event ended early as by 3pm all of the cars already left the lawn leaving the owners and spectators time to enjoy the afternoon of this sunny weekend elsewhere.

After 4 days of this year's event the conclusion is a very positive one. After the track days with the expected small entry list the two following days were among the finest the classic car scene has to offer, especially when considering the weather further north of the USA or in Europe at this time of the year with coldness and snow the visit at Palm Beach was very well worth the trip. Looking at the number of visitors we were not alone with this impression as the concours but also the receptions in the evening seemed more crowded than the years before showing that the “lean years” seem to be over as people start to spend money again.

For today we have put together a small preview of the display of the Classic Sports Sunday with a more intensive look back on all parts of the Cavallino Classic following the next days showing most of the cars on display. Some of the cars might be seen again at the next Concours in Amelia Island doing the tour in the Concours Circuit, others might be locked away again in a private garage for the next years as they were the last years.

Text & images ... Peter Singhof www.ClassicCarPhotography.de