In Summary
  • Gayling is a founder member of the Alfa Romeo Club; he has regularly won his class, and usually finishes in the overall top 10.
  • The gates open at 9am at the Nairobi Racecourse down the Ngong Road. The judging starts at 10.15am.
  • And the fun goes on to the Grand Finale performance at 5.30pm. On the day, tickets are Sh1,400 for adults and Sh700 for children.

Yes, it’s Concours time again.

Next Sunday will see the running of, to give its full name, the CBA Africa Concours d’Elegance.

It will be the 49th time that this classiest of Kenya’s motoring events has been organised by the Alfa Romeo Owners’ Club.

From a very low-key and modest beginning, the Concours has grown to be one of the country’s favourite annual entertainments.

It has become much more than a beauty contest for classic cars and motor cycles.

It is an exhibition for Kenya’s motor trade and an opportunity for spectators to show off the latest fashions.

It has the variety of a grand English garden fete — with all manner of stalls, children’s games, fly pasts, parachute jumps, eating and drinking places. But, unlike an English garden fete, the sun usually shines.

NEWCOMER

A few weeks ago, when I went to my car to drive home from the office, I found a leaflet pinned to the windscreen.

“This is a magnificent machine,” it said. “Why not enter it in the CBA Africa Concours d’Elegance on 29 September.”

Now, I enjoy driving; I appreciate the compliments I often get for my black short-wheelbase Defender with maridadi work done on it by Rainald Schuhmacher — but I don’t fancy putting in the work that must go into preparing a vehicle for the Concours.

So I went to talk with a couple who have done just that — one a regular entrant and the other a newcomer.

Gayling May has competed in the Concours for the last 10 years or so. He is entering his Alfa Romeo 2600 Sprint.

On the day, when in the paddock, the burgundy red car will display a brief bio: 'manufactured in early 1967; one of only 700 rhd models produced in Milan, Italy, between 1962 and 1969. 2.6 litre all alloy engine, with twin overhead camshafts and three twin-choke carburettors, producing 165bhp at 5,900rpm….’

Good idea — one that could be recommended for all competitors.

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