Dust off and spit and polish those beloved classics
Organisers of the Concours South Africa are expecting an even bigger event in 2018
The third annual Concours South Africa will be held at Sun City from August 10 to 12. Hosted by Concours SA, it is one of a handful of such events in the southern hemisphere.
Concours is not a contest of speed but of elegance, derived from the 17th century French term Concours d’Elegance meaning "competition of elegance". Automobiles are judged on the quality of presentation, historical accuracy, technical merit and style.
The oldest still-existent Concours, the Concours d’Eleganza Villa d’Este, first held in September 1929, is held annually at Villa d’Este on Lake Como in Italy. The first concours in North America was held in 1950 at the Pebble Beach Golf Links in Monterey, California, in conjunction with the first Pebble Beach Road Race. The honour for the longest-running event belongs to the Hillsborough Concours d’Elegance, running since 1956 in California.
The concours event strives to honour the artistry and craftsmanship of bygone eras, says Ross Crichton, co-founder of the Concours SA.
Limited to 150 vehicles, on display are expected to be the finest rare, collectible, classic cars from pre-war vintage to the modern era, all models dating from 1990 and prior.
Judges are drawn from the automotive and design industries. In 2017 more than 80 cars were entered in the various categories and organisers say they expect entries will swell to about 100 cars in 2018.
"We are gratified that there has been so much interest in Concours SA — with the actual competition still five months away this bodes well for another brilliant event," says co-founder Paul Kennard.
The 2017 event was won by a 1989 Ferrari F40 belonging to Johannesburg collector Keith Rivers. Victory in the first Concours SA, hosted in 2016, was awarded to a 1985 De Tomaso Pantera GT5 owned by the De Abreu family from Gaborone.
The growth of competitors’ submissions can be attributed to the distinctive formula and combination of glamour, exotic machinery and judging standards comparable to any international level, say organisers.
The 2018 event kicked off with a launch at the Inanda Club, Sandton, where a number of vehicles were on display. They included a 2001 Ferrari 550 Barchetta Pininfarina, a 1974 Porsche 911L, a 1976 Ferrari 308 GTB, a 1973 Ferrari 365 GTB/4 Daytona, 1913 Buick Model 24, a 1963 Maserati 3500 GT as well as a 1988 Ferrari F40.
"We look forward to hosting an event where enthusiasts can enjoy great cars in a relaxed setting," says Concours SA organiser Greg Marucchi.
The weekend programme will include a Parade De Voitures, a welcome function and an auction by international classic car auctioneers Coys of Kensington on August 10.
August 11 will be a full day of judging competition cars, with the final prize-giving ceremony on August 12.