The Chantilly Arts & Elégance Richard Mille has definitely found its place among the worldwide exceptional rendezvous devoted to the motor car, especially as it has revived con brio the great tradition of the Concours d’Elégance of the 1920s of which France was the cradle.
The first two Chantilly Arts & Elégance Richard Mille placed the event among the benchmark international Concours d’Elégance, and the third show consolidated the evolution. It was organised on Sunday 4th September and confirmed its status as the elegant rendezvous of the early autumn attracting some 13 500 visitors to the Chantilly domain, a stable figure compared to 2015.
There were eight concept cars in the running for the Concours d’Elégance entered by Aston Martin, BMW, Bugatti, DS Automobiles, Lexus, McLaren, Mercedes-Benz and Rolls-Royce, an increase in the number of car manufacturers associated this year with six Fashion Houses: Balmain, Eymeric François, Giorgio Armani, Jean-Paul Gaultier, Jorgen Simonsen and Timothy Everest.
Four prizes were awarded for the Concours d’Elégance. The Best of Show award went to the DS E-TENSE combined with a creation by Eymeric François. The ‘Prix Public’ crowned the Mercedes-Maybach 6 Vision associated with a dress created by Jean-Paul Gaultier. The prize for the motor car and fashion combination for the most beautiful ensemble went to the 570GT by McLaren Special Operations with a model also dressed by Jean-Paul Gaultier. And a special prize was awarded to the new ‘atelier’ motorbike by Zagato, the work of the master coachbuilder from Milan for the Italian manufacturer MV Augusta, which was given its world premier at Chantilly.
The Concours d’Etat attracted around one hundred exceptional cars from all over the world divided into 21 classes. The jury awarded the Best of Show to the 1938 Alfa Romeo 8C 2900B Lungo Berlinetta with coachwork by Touring belonging to American collector, John Shirley, entered in the class Pre- war beginnings of aerodynamics – Closed road-going cars.
Jean Todt, the president of the FIA (Fédération Interationale de l’Automobile) also awarded several prizes including the one for the class devoted to him in homage to Fifty years of an exceptional career. In it were several cars which he had guided to victory as a co-driver as well as competitions manager at Peugeot and then Ferrari. So he was delighted to award the prize to the Peugeot 504 Rally Group 4 and to Jean Guichet, his driver at the time: they won the 1979 Argentinean rally in this car.
Forty clubs made the trip to Chantilly bringing 800 cars that were on show on the domain.
The Château de Chantilly was home to the princes of Condé, cousins of the kings of France, from the 17th to the 19th centuries. It now houses the Musée Condé. Chantilly is also known for its horse racing track, the Chantilly Racecourse, where prestigious races are held for the prix du Jockey Club and the prix de Diane. Chantilly and the surrounding communities are home to the largest racehorse-training community in France.
Chantilly is also home to the Living Museum of the Horse, with stables built by the Princes of Condé. It is considered one of the more important tourist destinations in the Paris area. Chantilly gave its name to Chantilly cream and to Chantilly lace.