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A quartet of rare, head-turning star cars has joined the programme for the Concours of Elegance, which returns to Hampton Court Palace on 2-4 September.
And one of these is an exclusive example of the McLaren F1, a model which is celebrating its 30th anniversary this year.
The car coming to the concours is a GTR ‘Long Tail’, one of 10 built for the 1997 season. It was raced around the world in period and sealed victory at Silverstone in the British GT championship in ’97, piloted by future McLaren test driver Chris Goodwin.
It has since been converted for road use.
The first Ferrari road car with a mid-mounted V12 will also be on show at the 10th-anniversary Concours of Elegance, the 365P Berlinetta Speciale prototype displayed at the Paris show in 1966.
Known as the ‘Tre Posti’ because, like the McLaren F1, it has three seats, this Pininfarina-bodied rarity with a 4.4-litre V12 behind the central driver’s seat travelled the world as Ferrari’s show car.
It would be unique had Fiat boss Gianni Agnelli not been so enamoured with it that he commissioned his own.
A slightly earlier Ferrari will be in attendance, too, the 500TRC sports racer of 1957.
Just 17 of these were built, powered by 2-litre, four-cylinder engines, and the car coming to Hampton Court Palace finished 12th overall and third in class in what would turn out to be the final Mille Miglia, in 1957.
It’s recently undergone a three-year restoration by Ferrari Classiche, so will be perfectly presented in September.
The fourth car to be revealed at this time is a pre-war supercar, a Bugatti Type 57C Cabriolet, with straight-eight power and bodywork by French-Swiss coachbuilders Gangloff, and it is one of 96 produced.
This example was ordered new from Bugatti’s Nice showroom by Commander HRA Kidston who kept it for many years, before selling it on.
It has since been reunited with the Kidston family, bought back by Commander Kidston’s son, well-known collector car aficionado, Simon, and will surely look at home in the majestic grounds of Hampton Court Palace when it joins the Concours of Elegance in September.