The end of the automotive season is a tough time for all of us. At dawn of winter, we obviously had to be sick for the Zoute Grand Prix, set in Knokke, in Belgium. Waking up at 5 AM was actually the hardest part : as being sick and a late riser, I can’t describe how I found the strength to get out of my bed. After an hour and a half on the road, we knew we were getting closer to Knokke, by all the car dealers on the road : Bentley, Ford, Audi and many others. Then, many recent sports cars showed up : we werein Knokke for the Zoute Grand Prix. Text & Photos: Luca W.©

To start the Zoute Grand Prix, let’s go to the beach

The sun was enlightening sand grains and the beautiful car bodies, ready to be driven for the Zoute Rally. Cars, tents, music, people were filling the promenade with life already at 8’o’clock. The atmosphere of the Zoute Grand Prix is kind of unique : being the biggest classic car event in Belgium, close to the sea, attracts people and owners from all Europe.

The Belgian coast

The Belgian coast, compared to Italy or other Mediterranean countries, is unattractive : the water is, most of the time, like the sky, grey. But we have to admit that with more than 150 cars, an automotive event in this place is, well, graceful.

In reality, we just have had a quick look around there : we couldn’t wait to see the Zoute Concours d’Elegance car lineup. Nevertheless, we’ve shot some rally starts of magnificent classics and random parked cars.

Yes, as you may have seen, there were many many many women drivers. Don’t imagine how surprised we were. It is really uncommon to cross paths with women petrolheads, and we simply thought we had to marry all of them.

Then, we decided to have a walk in Knokke. It is like the Belgian Miami, and has its own atmosphere. For the event that the Zoute Grand Prix is, the streets were decorated with all automotive objects : flags, tyres, hay bales (like Goodwood). But the main “deco” were cars. Yes, cars. Almost every glorious car maker exposed at least two of their actual cars.

My morning walk was memorable, as I was standing all alone, here, in the streets of Knokke.

The streets of Knokke

Let’s play some golf

There was an extra time in our walk. We’ve come across a lot of cars and eye-catching ones.

Finally, we arrived at the Concours d’Elegance, which took place in a golf course. The place was quite empty and the cause was morning. We’ve decided to take it as an advantage so we could see and hear the cars coming. Yet, there still were several cars that couldn’t be ignored.

The Mercedes-Benz 500K Roadster

We only had eyes for this magnificent 1936 Mercedes-Benz 500K Roadster (only 58 produced), with its particular engine : a 5 litre straight-eight. The car won the prize of the most exciting design.

Its neighbour was a 1933 Rolls-Royce Phantom II Limousine. We can’t deny the fact it won the most elegant interior : it’s equipped with a saloon.

The Rolls-Royce Phantom II Limousine

We continued our walk around the course and, as it happens, we found ourselves face to … whatever of a Miura.

Lamborghini Miura

Then, we’ve crossed an Alfa Romeo 8C 2900A Botticella Spider, designed by the monstrous Vittorio Jano. Yes, it was racing under Scuderia Ferrari’s colours. The car won the engineering award.

The Alfa Romeo 8C 2900A Botticella Spider

Then, a very, very unusual car came by

We ereshocked, almost like everyone and we think it was the owner’s goal : bring a car in restoration in a Concours. The thing is, it’s not a “random” Concours car. It’s the kind of car they don’t make anymore, the kind of car that has a very uncommon and original story. It’s a Ferrari engineer car, it’s a Bizzarrini. More particularly, an ISO A3C.


All of a sudden, the Zoute Grand Prix got better

The most beautiful spyder ever

Yep… What do you want us to say? A Ferrari 250 GT LWB California Spyder. Surprise Bertrand! Even now, we can’t say or write anything about it. Do you want technical features? We don’t. We just want to look at it for the whole night, even in our dreams. One of the most beautiful cars ever was in front of us, being driven by surely a gentleman who took care of wearing “old timer” clothes, like in Goodwood Revival.

Let’s calm down a bit… You know what? No.

And now the most beautiful race car ever

1956 Maserati 250 SI ‘RUINART TROPHY’… The Zoute Concours d’Elegance organizers wanted me to cry I guess. But I didn’t and took some pictures instead. The car won the race class – the most valuable price according to me – and the owner is no one else than Marc Devis.

These were the cars that drawed our attention. Do not misunderstand: there were other great cars