The 2019 Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance
The racing cars of the great Belgian ace Jacky Ickx, remembering two decades of dominance of the Porsche 962, applauding the immortal 250 GT SWB, Jaguar XK 120 and many more: varied and interesting cars once again on the fairways of another brilliant Amelia Island concours.
Few do it better. This year, Bill Warner and his team were blessed with perfect weather – although the clocks going forward one hour that very day made photography at a murky eight o’clock in the morning a challenge…
Whatever, it was another terrific show. A bearded Ickx (pictured, above, with wife Burundian singer Khadja Nin and Bill Warner) was the honouree of the event. He opened proceedings by driving his Martini Racing Porsche 936 from the arena to the dedicated display by the lake. It joined other well-known cars in the life of the brilliant driver, including two Ferrari 312 PBs, the 1969 Le Mans-winning Gulf GT40 and rarely seen gems such as Ickx’s 1977 IROC Camaro.
As usual, the show field was split into two: American pre-War classics lined one side, more modern sports and racing cars the other. Sub-classes included dragsters and funny cars from the NHRA (National Hot Rod Association), Posies custom hot rods and limousines favoured by heads of state.
Fifty years of the finest-ever all-round competition GT – Ferrari’s gorgeous 250 GT SWB – were celebrated by a seven-car line-up (with a LWB ‘Interim’) that included Bertone-bodied ‘1739 GT’ and Bruce Meyer’s well-known SEFAC Hot Rod ‘2689 GT’. The latter deservedly won the ‘Ferrari Excellence Award’ for the most historically significant 250 SWB Berlinetta.
At the end of the day, two cars came out on top: ‘Best in Show, Concours de Sport’ went to Brian Ross’s 1957 Ferrari 335 S (ex-Bardinon, sold by Artcurial in 2016). Collector of note Arturo Keller scooped ‘Best in Show, Concours d’Elegance’ with his 1938 Mercedes-Benz 540K Autobahn-Kurier, one of the most famous and valuable classic cars in the world.
It’s not always the easiest venue to get to, but once again Amelia Island proved the effort was worth it. Roll on 2020.
To read the K500 overview of the Amelia Island auctions – with full results listed by make and model – click HERE.