The inaugural Concours South Africa took place at Sun City from Friday 9 to Sunday 11 September 2016.The lawns of Sun City became the show piece for some of the most prized and collectible cars in South Africa. The setting and venue definitely did justice for the cars on display and the ones that had entered the Concours. It was with great excitement that we arrived Mid-Morning on Saturday, I was really looking forward to the Event which was last held back in the early 90’s at the Old Kyalami Race Track. I remember those days so clearly as my Dad entered an Austin Healy back then and won overall a couple of times when Stirling Moss was the guest of Honour.
From the Information provided before the event took place and my understanding there were basically going to be two main categories the Concours De Elegance and the Show and Shine Category. However there were a couple of hiccups for the organizers as Sun City had taken up some of the space allocated to the event to start erecting Grand Stands ect for the Big Golf Tournament.
Not to be deterred a compromise was found and all the cars that had entered were on display in 5 different cordoned off areas. There is that old saying that quality is definitely better than quantity and this was definitely the case at this Event. The cars were of pristine, original and immaculate condition. The variety was also top notch as the cars ranged from a Ford 1600 Sport to a Classic Mercedes 190SL to some 90’s Super Cars such as Lamborghini Diablo’s , Ferrari Testarossa to an exceptional De Tomaso Pantera. There were some Muscle Car Mustangs and some old time favourites such as an Alfa GT 1600 Junior all in impeccable condition thrown in the mix.
We started with a brief walk around to find our bearings and bumped into many old friends involved in the Classic Car Industry and some of the Cars owners who had entered the event. We just generally got a feel for the layout and what to expect. Every car had a piece of paper on the dash with an allocated time when it would be judged. The judging went like clockwork with the panel of judges who were allocated 15 minutes per car, the owner had to be in attendance to answer any queries they might have had and to start the vehicle. Once they had moved onto the next vehicle the public announcer would then interview the owner “a very unique concept that I think worked brilliantly as we the public got to hear first-hand a brief history of the car. “I soon worked out as there were no information boards displayed in front or behind the cars was to follow the judges around to listen to the interviews to get a better idea of the car and its History and in some cases meet the owners.
The location, venue, setting and the Cars on Display were defiantly of an International Experience. It took us about 5 hours to wonder around and take in all these Magnificent Beauties. I was with two women who albeit are petrol heads for a certain amount of time were also sorry when we headed back to the Big Jozi and were full of chatter on our journey home. A truly magnificent experience and an Absolute Thumbs UP to the Organizers of the Event.
I am sure the organizer have a game plan for next year’s event here are just a couple of observations that I made during the day.
- A display board accompanying each car giving a brief history of the vehicle such as model, year and some specifications.
- The Category of the Competition that the Car was entered into.
- Cars displayed in the same demarcated areas pertinent to the category entered.
- Not sure why the lack of participation from the various Car Clubs but there needs to be more buy in from these Guys.