The Festival of Motoring celebrated at the “new” Kyalami on the 31 August to September 4.From all the press releases it promised to be the country’s Premier new motoring show with an added new key element of 4,5km freshly laid new tarmac available for all the top SA brands to put their new models to the test on the high speed circuit. The Festival had been designed to emulate the Goodwood Festival in the UK.
BMW had their brand new M6 GT3 Racer, Mercedes Benz their AMG GT3 car which replaced the SLS GT3, Nissan had an array of GTR’s for the fans, and Mustang had their new range on hand with all the other manufactures having demo models with their latest offerings.
I started my journey down in the pit complex where every manufacture had been allocated a pit. All the pits had been set up if this was a genuine race day environment where the cars could be refuelled tyre pressure checked ect. They all had entertainment areas at the back where one could sign up as a passenger or as a driver to experience the Car of their choice or just the Brand New Kyalami Circuit. The longest queues were definitely for the Mustangs and Nissan GTR’S.
At the back of the pit complex there were many stores selling their wares, the one that caught my attention was definitely Tylers Transport Museum Store and Museum this was definitely a walk in the past. I sat and had a long chat to Shawn Tyler and will definitely be heading out there in the next couple of weeks.
After visiting and chatting to Shawn, I wandered upstairs to see what was in store there. I was almost immediately blown back by a Ferrari GTB, a Silver Mercedes 300SL and then the partially restored Mercedes Benz 300SL took the cake! The professional way the car was displayed in its restoration project state is the best ever seen. I know Kobus who is doing the restoration and the guy knows his way around a car. I recently sold a Rolls Royce Silver Cloud III and when I had a few issues that need taking care of Kobus went out of his way to get the car sorted and even finding a couple more irregularities that he sorted out. When the Mercedes is finally ready to present to us dreamers I honestly believe it would be a Pebble Beach Contender. Good luck Franco and Kobus with the rest of your project.
After the 300SL I had to go and have a drink!!! And wondered off to the Classic Car display upstairs in the open lot. The first car that caught my attention was the immaculate Volvo P1800S owned by Vic Campher ,I have known these guys for many years and raced with them in Off-road Racing , travelled with them to a couple of Formula One GP’s and there is not one more enthusiastic about the Volvo Brand.
The blare from the Band and bumping to a couple of mates steered us to the beer garden for a late afternoon sundowner, there is so much more that I saw and could write about , if you were not there you missed out on a truly South African Goodwood Experience and should be licking your wounds.