Syon Park, London, 3rd - 5th of September, 2014
After a long and exhausting classic car season with more events
than ever before the last beautiful weekends of the year are taken
by several events at the same time. Since three years now the
first weekend of September became the days of the different
concours both on the island and the continental Europe with the
Salon PrivĂ© and the Hampton Court Concours in London and new
the Chantilly Concours in France before the final race meetings at
Goodwood, Spa and Paul Ricard.
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For the 9th year the Salon PrivĂ© opened its doors in London after a
start in the Hurlingham Club to be held in the Syon Park for the last
years. Unlike the other concours this is much more a garden party
with programme for three days than the usual one day concours as
known from the US or the Villa DÂ´Este. With the judging taking part at
the first day this leaves enough time to enjoy the beautiful settings
both for the owners and the visitors on the following days. With a
changed timetable at Hampton Court compared to its predecessors
in Windsor and St. James it is possible again to visit the Salon PrivĂ©
on the Boodles Ladies day. Being one of the sponsors (Chubb
Insurance is the main sponsor) of the event the jeweller Boodles
donates a prize for the best dressed woman at the event and so this
is one of the highlight days with a lot of elegant woman walking
between the exhibited cars, drinking champagne or enjoying the
traditional lobster during the lunch time. Unfortunately the weather
was not as good as in the last days with the tour and the prize-giving
as the sun was rarely seen this day but despite dark clouds in the
morning it stayed dry so none of the ladies had to worry about their
dresses and extensive hats.
But certainly not just the ladies drew attention but a great selection of
cars in different classes. As at almost every event this year Salon
PrivĂ© had a Maserati Class for the centenary with cars ranging from
an early Tipo 26 to the post-war street cars like the 3500 GT, the
Ghibli or the Khamsin.
Also another pair of anniversaries were anniversary was celebrated
by the Ferrari 275 GTB/GTS that became 50! this year with a nice
line-up including alloy competition versions and the Spyder. 10 years
older is the Jaguar D-Type with its innovative monocoque structure
and its disc brakes being a revolution in long distance racing.
Introduced in 1954 the D-Type became Jaguars most successful Le
Mans racers with no less than 3 successive wins at La Sarthe.
Highlight in this class and even Best of Show at the end of the day
became the 1954 factory team car driven by Duncan Hamilton and
Tony Rolt to a second place in its debut behind the winning Ferrari.
Certainly Ferrari played again a big role on the field and most
interesting was the line-up of the Gran Turismo class were two
models with successive chassis number were standing side-by-side
for the first time in years, the 250 GT LWB California Spyder (0923GT)
and its racing cousin, the Tour de France (0925GT).
Apart from these a lot more cars could be admired on the show field
but not just classic cars are shown but also modern supercars
attracting the visitors to the Salon PrivĂ©. Several local dealers from the
capitol of the high finance showed cars like the new LaFerrari,
Koenigsegg or Pagani alongside special customized Range Rovers
and others. These will be also the theme of the last day of the
meeting as Friday is known as the Supercars Friday.
Tomorrow the Hampton Court Concours will join in to this London
Concours weekend before we head over the channel for the first
Chantilly concours just north of Paris.
In the next days there will be a more detailed review on these events
with all the interesting cars and impressions in detail.
Report & Images ... Peter Singhof