Jacky Ickx left with Derek Bell, reunited with their victorious Porsche 956.
On Thursday 23 February I packed my kit and made my way over to London’s ExCeL’s exhibition centre as the London Classic Car Show and sister show Historic Motorsport International opened their doors for a four-day feast of classic motoring nostalgia.
No fewer than five Le Mans legends – with an incredible 18 wins between them were there to open the event. These photographs I took tell the story of my visit.
The great Belgian, Jacky Ickx - who won 8 Grand Prix, poses next to his beautiful Brabham BT26A which brought him to second place in the 1969 Formula 1 world championship.
Jacky Ickx – London Classic Car Show, Guest of Honour, where he was reunited with a number of cars from his racing past. A special display included his Ferrari 312 B2 and Brabham BT26 Grand Prix winning cars, and the Gulf Mirage GR8 and Porsche 956 that he shared with Derek Bell to claim two of their Le Mans victories.
Jacky Ickx being interviewed about his illustrious motor racing career.
Gulf Mirage GR8.
Jacky Ickx (centre), Derek Bell (right of centre) and Emanuele Pirro (far right) were stars of the opening day’s gala evening celebrations, where they were joined by two more Le Mans winners, Jackie Oliver (far left) and Jürgen Barth (left of centre).
Jacky Ickx shared Le Mans wins with: Jackie Oliver (1969), Jürgen Barth (1977) and Derek Bell (1975, 1981 and 1982).
Jacky Ickx with his Le Mans winning co-driver Jackie Oliver in front of a photograph of them taken in 1969.
Derek Bell with the Porsche 956 he once raced in.
Advice for those looking to buy a classic was available from respected TV expert Quentin Willson.
He was present throughout the show and his latest ‘Smart Buys’ were showcased on the Classic Car magazine stand.
Dario Franchitti with Joe Macari.
Another great racing name, Dario Franchitti (right), opening one of the show’s many highlights, a Ferrari Tribute comprising of 21 iconic Ferrari roads cars together worth an estimated £120 million. This year marks Ferrari’s 70th anniversary and the display, curated by Ferrari specialist dealer Joe Macari, brought together Ferraris old and new, from the early fifties 375MM to the latest hypercar, LaFerrari.
1963 Ferrari 250 GTO once owned by Pink Floyd drummer Nick Mason sold in 2013 for £52 million, making it the world's most expensive car. He bought the car in 1977 for £35,000 - what a great return!
The iconic La Ferrari - On December 3, 2016, a LaFerrari auctioned off for $7 million, making this car the most valuable 21st century automobile ever sold at auction.
This 1961 Ferrari 250 GT SWB California Spyder once owned by actor James Coburn for 25 years.
And at 6:30pm sharp, engines were started as a number of ultra rare classics took to The Grand Avenue, a quarter-mile long highway running through the centre of the show.
On the Grand Avenue this 1937 Alvin 4.3 Lancefield Concealed Hood.
This year’s theme was 'The Perfect 10', putting the spotlight on the best six examples of 10 different body styles which then were paraded on the catwalk allowing enthralled visitors to see – and hear – some of their favourite classics in action.
Dario Franchitti parading a Ferrari F40, named to celebrate Ferrari's fortieth anniversary.
TV Chef and petrol head James Martin, Joe Macari and Quentin Wilson discussing James Martin's love of Ferrari's.
Derek Bell presenting one of racing's greatest all-round drivers, Jacky Ickx, with the London Classic Car Icon Award.
The Icon trophy presented to Jacky Ickx on behalf of the London Classic Car Show.
Dario Franchitti and Jacky Ickx between the Ferrari F40 and Porsche 911 GT3-RS.
Emanuele Pirro, Quentin Wilson, Dario Franchitti, Derek Bell, Jacky Ickx, Jackie Oliver, Jürgen Barth, James Martin and Joe Macari.
I found this years show was bigger and much improved from previous years. I hear there were over 37,000 visitors over the 4 day event. Confirmed dates for next year, 15-18 February 2018 to put in your diary.
Thanks for reading, bye for now.