At Lime Rock Park’s 32nd “Sunday in the Park Concours d’ Elegance presented by Bentley,” 224 vehicles, in 29 classes, were presented and judged. Under the watchful eyes of organizers Kent Bain and Murray Smith—with Lady Susie and Sir Stirling Moss alongside—when the results were tabulated, a 1933 Alfa Romeo 8C 2300 owned by Peter Sachs of Stamford, Conn., was awarded Best of Show. The stellar cream yellow car had been entered in Class 3, “Risky but Racy, competition machines of merit pre-1945.” This car was delivered to Tazio Nuvolari, for the 1933 24 Hours of Le Mans—Alfa Romeo teamed Nuvolari with Raymond Sommer (who didn’t trust Nuvolari with the car!). In the race, they built a two-lap lead but had to pit due to a fuel leak, which is said to have been plugged with chewing gum. Nuvolari broke the lap record nine times and went on to win the race by about a quarter-mile.
The Class 3 winner was a 1934 MG K3 Magnette, presented by the Collier Collection’s “Revs Institute,” which sent four other cars to Lime Rock: a 1964 and a 1970 Abarth, an OSCA MT-4, and the 1935 MG PA-PB Leonidis, winner of Class 1, “Out in the Elements, open vehicles of distinction pre-1945.”
Virgil Exner’s stunning one-off dream car, the 1960 Plymouth XNR, was entered into Class 23, “America’s Finest, Post-WWII.” Up against a phalanx of Lincolns and Cadillacs, the XNR took home the trophy. Early in his career, Exner had a stint with famed industrial designer Raymond Loewy, who drew up all the designs for Lime Rock’s buildings, pit lane and training facilities in 1956. Regrettably, the track’s investors ran out of money before anything of Loewy’s could be built.
The People’s Choice went to an imposing but still approachable 1926 Kissel Speedster, owned by Andrew Benenson. Benenson also owns the 1951 Cisitalia C 202 that won Class 17, “The Other Italians,” while elsewhere, Joe Freeman entered his 1947 HRG 1100 Roadster and won Class 8, “For Road & Track, the cars the boys brought home, sports cars 1945-1955.