Georgia military academy hosts inaugural Champions and Heroes

The Champions and Heroes Time Trials will highlight the weekend | William Hall
The Champions and Heroes Time Trials will highlight the weekend | William Hall

(Editor’s note: The Riverside Military Academy Champions and Heroes event has been postponed until June 2018 because of massive traffic jams created by the fire and collapse of a section of Interstate 85 in Atlanta.)

Riverside Military Academy in Gainesville, Georgia, will host on June 2 to 4 the inaugural Champions and Heroes, a vintage car weekend consisting of a rally, time trials and concours d’elegance, in the small lakeside town one hour northeast of Atlanta.

The venue on the 206-acre campus of the military prep academy aims to approximate in setting and style the European-estate feel of such events as the Goodwood Festival of Speed in England. Continue reading

Faces at the Races: Vintage motorcycles at Road America

Race bikes, show bikes and plenty of people at the vintage-motorcycle races and show at Road America | William Hall photos
Race bikes, show bikes and plenty of people at the vintage-motorcycle races and show at Road America | William Hall photos

You meet the most interesting people at a racetrack. Here are just a few we encountered during the recent AHRMA Vintage Motorcycle races and Rockerbox Motofest at Road America in Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin. Continue reading

5,000 vintage British motoring photos go online

A Bugatti Type 37 slides through a curve during a 1935 British hill climb | Motoring Picture Library
A Bugatti Type 37 slides through a curve during a 1935 British hill climb | Motoring Picture Library

A vast collection of 5,000 vintage photographs chronicling “the golden age of British motoring” has been added to the Motoring Picture Library’s website for public view and purchase.

The images from the National Motor Museum Trust’s Bill Brunell Photographic Collection are now available at www.motoringpicturelibrary.com. They include many striking images of motorsports competition from the 1920s and 1930s, and are among 24,000 images available for purchase online.

The Austin 7 works team at Brooklands in 1937 | Motoring Picture Library
The Austin 7 works team at Brooklands in 1937 | Motoring Picture Library

Brunell was a professional photographer who regularly competed in rallies and sports car events, and is best known for partnering with Hon. Victor Bruce in 1926 to become the first Englishmen to win the Monte Carlo Rally. Brunell’s daughter, Kitty, took part in many of the motoring events, including the Monte Carlo Rally of 1929 in a Talbot 14/45 for which she designed the body, and is featured in a number of the photographs.

“Brunell’s photography, shot mainly on glass plate in the 1920s and 1930s, is an evocative reminder of the golden age of British motoring, capturing perfectly the mood and spirit of the era,” said Jon Day, manager of the Motoring Picture Library Manager. “From street and social scenes to events, trials and rallies throughout Great Britain and Europe, Brunell’s images are an important historical record with artistic merit in their own right.”

The Beaulieu-based Motoring Picture Library contains an archive of over one million photographic images and is considered one of the most comprehensive sources of motoring photographs. The library supplies pictures  to the enthusiast as well as commercially for publishing, broadcasting and advertising.

Copperstate 1000 ready to rally in Arizona

Sports cars on tour during a past Copperstate 1000 road rally | Copperstate 1000
Sports cars on tour during a past Copperstate 1000 road rally | Copperstate 1000

The 24th annual Copperstate 1000 hits the road April 6 for a four-day, 1,000-mile tour of southern Arizona, featuring a superb contingent of vintage sports, GT and race cars in what has become one of the nation’s premier road rallies.

This year’s Copperstate 1000 route takes ralliers through the scenic and historic southeastern corner of Arizona, visiting the famed Old West town of Tombstone; a stop in Bisbee, the quirky mining town turned artists’ colony; “hill climbs” up the winding mountain roads of Kitt Peak and Mount Lemon; and a tour through the magnificent cactus-studded scenery of Saguaro National Park.

A rare 1965 Lamborghini 3500 GT Zagato will rally this year | Copperstate 1000
A rare 1965 Lamborghini 3500 GT Zagato will rally this year | Copperstate 1000

The event starts Sunday, April 6, with the 86-rally cars spread out for public inspection on the baseball field at Tempe Diablo Stadium during the annual Field of Dreams show. The parking lots around the stadium usually are as interesting as the main show as local hobbyists and collectors drive their special old cars to the stadium to show off.

Field of Dreams concludes with the rally cars being introduced and flagged off one at a time in a European-style sendoff for the first day of driving. The rally runs through April 9.

The 86 entries include exotic ’50s and ’60s sports and racing cars from such makers as Ferrari, Maserati, Jaguar and Aston-Martin; vintage touring cars, such as the oldest vehicle in the rally, a 1924 Bentley; plus Corvettes, Shelbys and a rare Devin SS. There’s a 1955 Studebaker President Speedster and a 1957 Porsche Carrera Speedster.

Some of the cars are truly spectacular.

Unique 1953 Aston-Martin DB2/4 Bertone roadster | Copperstate 1000
Unique 1953 Aston-Martin DB2/4 Bertone roadster | Arizona Concours d’Elegance

“We’re very lucky to have Bill Pope bringing his 1952 Aston-Martin DB2/4 Bertone-bodied roadster,” said Kelly Whitton, spokesperson for the Men’s Arts Council, which organizes the Copperstate 1000 as a benefit for the Phoenix Art Museum. “It’s just phenomenal.”

The Aston-Martin Bertone was featured in January at the inaugural Arizona Concours d’Elegance at the Arizona Biltmore.

“We also have a Lamborghini 3500 GT Zagato, one of two essentially prototype cars ever made,” Whitton added.

The rally is accompanied by a squad of DPS state-police officers on motorcycles, mechanics experienced with vintage cars to handle the inevitable breakdowns, and a support staff made up mainly of volunteers from the Men’s Arts Council.

The large number of road-going participants makes for some logistical challenges, Whitton said, especially for the small towns where the group will be staying in overnight stops.

“We’re pretty much taking over the entire town of Tubac,” Whitton said. “It’s all rented out.”

Tiny, pricey roadster built as classic Aston Martin

The DB Junior’s composite body is made to resemble a classic Aston Martin. (Photo: Nicholas Mee & Co.)
The DB Junior’s composite body resembles an Aston Martin DB5. (Photos: Nicholas Mee & Co.)

 

Searching for just the right premium motorcar to suit the discriminating taste of your 10 year old?

Well, look no further, for a British classic car dealer is offering a tiny but functional automobile styled after a vintage Aston Martin roadster that’s certain to suit the most aristocratic of youngsters.

Price tag for the DB Junior approaches $26,000 US. (Photo: Nicholas Mee & Co.)
Price tag for the DB Junior approaches $26,000 U.S.

With the styling of a classic Aston Martin DB5 drophead from the 1960s, the DB Junior is a half-size single seater powered by a 110cc four-stroke engine, three-speed semi-automatic transmission and hydraulic disc brakes. Top speed (which can be adjusted downward by concerned parents) is an impressive 46 mph.

Just the thing for a young lord to tour the grounds of Downton Abbey. Or for an imaginary James Bond adventure in miniature.

The price tag is nearly $26,000 U.S., which would buy a real-life vehicle for most folks.

The little cars are being marketed by Nicholas Mee & Co., Aston Martin Heritage Dealer in West London. A spokesman for the dealer noted that they are built by a British-owned company in Asia and are not in any way associated with the Aston Martin car company of Gaydon, England, the legendary automaker that builds the genuine article.

“When we first saw the DB Junior we couldn’t stop smiling,” said Nicholas Mee, managing director of the dealership. “We then realized that these scaled-down 1960s convertibles would complement full-sized offerings here in our showrooms.”