Kuwait has arrived – it's now hosting a world-class event. That was the combined view of the crowds and participants who joined the 2012 Concours d'Elegance at Kuwait's exclusive Marina area. For its third running, the event was bigger and better than before, and had attracted some of the world's best cars.
Held during a national holiday, the event attracted far more visitors than ever before - with many people driving from the wider Saudi region, as well as flying in from all over the world. They came from as far and wide as Argentina and Japan to see the cars, soak in the atmosphere, and watch a star-studded judging panel choose the best cars of the event.
As we reported on our daily updates, the opening night saw the Kuwaiti emir appear as the guest of honour, where he was shown around the cars. He - and his massive following scrum of journalists, bodyguards and advisors - took time to closely look at every car on the event (and there were a lot), with the accompanying Leonardo Fioravanti (Ferrari Daytona designer, among others) explaining their finer points.
As well as the concours field, there were cars shown around the marina - including two factory Zagato prototypes and Grand Prix cars driven by John Cooper and Ayrton Senna - as well as the surrounding grounds. Want to see the Ferrari 250GT Breadvan or a Maserati Birdcage? They were here, with plenty more besides. Including an excellent collection of muscle cars. It was a fitting beginning to what proved to be a larger than life concours, which as well as attracting the crowds, saw a number of owners' clubs display their cars (and motorcycles) in the parking area alongside.
On Friday and Saturday, the judging took place, and was a serious affair. In the end, Chip Connor's amazing Talbot Lago took Best in Show (see panel for full results). Zakaria Dhashti, Communication Director
Historical, Vintage & Classic Cars Museum, said it was 'the best concours Kuwait has held.' Organiser, Paul Goldsmith, echoed that view saying, 'it's been incredibly busy, but the event has stepped up a gear in 2012.'
Full a full report, see Octane magazine, May 2012, on sale, 25 March.
ALL THE WINNERS
BEST of SHOW
1938 Talbot Lago T150C SS Figoni & Falaschi Teardrop Coupe Chip Connor Hong Kong
Class-A : 1910 - 1930
1st A5 1924 Rolls-Royce Silver Ghost Abdulkarim Chhapra Pakistan
2nd A8 1929 Cord L29 Cabriolet Rene Verbiest Belgium
3rd A9 1929 Hupmobile Abdulkarim Chhapra Pakistan
Class-B : 1931 - 1945
1st B9 1938 Talbot Lago T150C SS Figoni & Falaschi Teardrop Coupe Chip Connor Hong Kong
2nd B6 1937 Alfa Romeo 6C 2300 B Pescara Berlinetta Pietro Navone Spain
3rd B2 1932 Invicta S-Type Low Chassis Alan Chandler UK
Class-C : 1946 - 1960
1st C4 1951 Maserati A6G 2000 Vignale Body Shigeru Hoshino Japan
2nd C13 1955 Aston Martin DB2/4 Mark I Ali Mustafa Makhseed Kuwait
3rd C13 1948 Delahaya 135 MS Convertible coachwork by Saoutchik Jean Claude Marmier France
Class-D : 1961 - 1975
1st D6 1966 Aston Martin DB6 Volante short chassis Mohammed Rezam AlRoumi Kuwait
2nd D8 1966 Lamborghini 350GT Albert & Rita Spiess Switzerland
3rd D3 1963 Aston Martin DB4GT Zagato William Loughran UK
1st M17 1972 Oldsmobile 442 Convertible Stanley Kryla USA
2nd M8 1967 Shelby Mustang GT500 Abdulla AlQadibi Kuwait
3rd M12 1970 Plymouth Cuda 340 Historical, Vintage & Classic Car Museum Kuwait
1st R5 1953 Ferrari 375MM Spyder Helmut Ebrlein - Representing the owner Germany
2nd R8 1955 Maserati 250F Bill Pope UK
3rd R3 1927 Salmson Type GSC San Sebastian Camille Bourges France
Most Elegant Open Car
1955 Siata 208S Jim Utaski USA
Most Elegant Closed Cars
1955 Bugatti 57S Atalante Chip Connor Hong Kong
Most Elegance Racing Car
1953 Jaguar C-Type Margaret Jackson & Neil Hadfield UK
Best European Car
1963 Aston Martin DB4GT Zagato William Loughran UK
Best American Car
1954 Plymouth Explorer 195 Coupe by Ghia Petersen Museum USA
Best Preserved Car
1966 Lamborghini 350GT Albert & Rita Spiess Switzerland
Best Restored Car
1937 Alfa Romeo 6C 2300 B Pescara Berlinetta Pietro Navone Spain
Most Innovative Italian Car - Trophy Awarded by ACI - Automobile Club of Italy (Selected by Kuwait Concours Judges)
1971 Lamborghini Miura SV Khalid Abdulrahem Bahrain
1964 Rolls-Royce Silver Cloud III Continantal Mulliner Park Ward Sheikh Ahmad Bin Ali Al-Khalifa Bahrai