The 60 motor cars on display in the quadrangle inside the keep of Windsor Castle, the favourite home of Her Majesty the Queen, were absolute perfection.
To celebrate Her Majesty’s Diamond Jubilee, the concours cars were granted special access to the Castle offering this unique spectacle. One noted American collector said, ‘This is the best automobile concours I have ever been to. It is amazing that in its first year, the Windsor Castle Concours of Elegance is now the best in the world.’
The central display consisted of four royal motor cars: Her Majesty the Queen’s 1949 Rolls-Royce Phantom IV and 1977 Phantom VI; HRH The Prince of Wales’ 1969 Aston Martin DB6 Volante as well as the Duke of Edinburgh’s 1961 Alvis TD21 and two Ascot Landaus.
At the Concours there was no actual judging for the twelve classes as each car was a winner in its own right, having been selected to attend this magnificent event. But a ‘Best of Show’ trophy was awarded, as voted for by all the entrants. This large and striking John Elwell trophy, the Pullman Trophy, was donated by Simon Khachadourian of the Pullman Gallery in London. The popular recipient was the impossibly elegant and graceful 1938 Alfa Romeo 8C 2900B Touring Berlinetta owned by Jon and Mary Shirley from the United States of America. It is a previous ‘Best of Show’ winner at Pebble Beach in 2008 and at Villa D’Este in 2009 and it won the first Watkins Glen race in 1948.
Of the cars entered, half came from abroad with almost 20 from America. Collector Chip Connor summed it all up by saying, ‘The fairy tale drive along the Long Walk and up to Windsor Castle was incredible. The setting is impossible to beat. A truly amazing experience.’
Read the full report in issue 113 of Octane, on newsstands on 27 September.