Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion
The origins of the week can be traced back to 1950 when a group of sports car owners decided to create a road race and concours at Pebble Beach. The first winner of the road race was Phil Hill, who would go on to become a three-time winner of the 24 Hours of le Mans and the first American-born winner of the Formula 1 World Drivers Championship. Over the succeeding 60 or so years, the event has grown in size, shape and stature, attracting an array of cars and spectators from around the world.
The now traditional third Sunday in August became a calendar fixture for the Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance in 1972. During the day, around 200 of the most prized collector cars will take pride of place on the famous eighteenth fairway at Pebble Beach. Rolex has been Official Timepiece of the Concours and partner of The Lodge at Pebble Beach since 1997.
PEBBLE BEACH CONCOURS D’ELEGANCE
Pebble Beach Golf Links has witnessed many memorable triumphs in its history, including U.S. Open wins for Rolex Testimonees Jack Nicklaus and Tiger Woods. The Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance is a very different affair to the climax of a “Major”, but it too is a triumph worth experiencing.
The gathering of prized collectors’ cars on the 18th fairway overlooking the Pacific Ocean has earned a reputation as one of the world’s finest car exhibitions. Launched in 1950 as a small social event with an accompanying road race designed to showcase the most avant-garde vehicles of the period, the event has evolved into a globally renowned tribute to automotive splendor.
The Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance is not a contest of speed. The judges assess historical and technical accuracy, along with style and refinement. The aim is to recognize and thereby encourage the proper preservation of the world’s most significant automobiles. Attention to detail and commitment to excellence are key values for Rolex, which has been the Official Timepiece of the Concours and partner to The Lodge at Pebble Beach since 1997.
PEBBLE BEACH TOUR D’ELEGANCE PRESENTED BY ROLEX
In 1998, the idea of pairing an on-road element with the Concours was reintroduced.
The Pebble Beach Tour d’Elegance has been presented by Rolex since 2007, and is a chance to take pleasure in the automobile in motion, taking full advantage of the Monterey Peninsula’s scenic roads. Scheduled for the Thursday before the Concours, participating vehicles gather at Pebble Beach in the morning, before departing on a drive to the crescent-shaped bay of Carmel-by-the-Sea. On the route, the cars pass through pine and cypress forests, and along dramatic coastal cliff roads. Once at their destination, the participants enjoy a gourmet lunch as their reward, while passionate enthusiasts are treated to a visual feast with the entered cars lined up on Ocean Avenue for public viewing. In the afternoon, the cars return to Pebble Beach for a champagne reception.
The Pebble Beach Tour d’Elegance presented by Rolex and the Concours are directly linked: if two vehicles tie in competition at the Concours, the vehicle that successfully completed the Tour will take the prize.
THE QUAIL, A MOTORSPORTS GATHERING
The Quail, A Motorsports Gathering is among the most exclusive of the reunions during Monterey Classic Car Week. Taking place on the Friday between the Pebble Beach Tour and the Concours d’Elegance, and celebrating its 11th anniversary this year, The Quail combines landmark automobiles with a true culinary experience in a sophisticated and genteel atmosphere.
The Quail welcomes over 100 examples of automotive poetry, including a special selection from those racing at the Rolex Monterey Motorsport Reunion – which participate in The Quail Run from Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca to The Quail Lodge.
A variety of awards are presented using a peer-based judging system special to the event. The top prize is the Rolex Best in Show, awarded to the vehicle determined by other entrants to have distinguished itself through exceptional design, technical interest and accurate restoration. Rolex has been the Official Timekeeper of The Quail, A Motorsports Gathering since its inception in 2003.
ROLEX MONTEREY MOTORSPORTS REUNION
Established in 1957, the track is as demanding for drivers as it is thrilling for spectators.
The 3.602km, 11-turn road course is highlighted by over 90 meters in elevation changes and a notorious 18 meter drop experienced in the infamous Corkscrew turn. Racing is over four days, and competing vehicles are selected from over 800 applicants for their historical significance, authenticity and adherence to their period. A hallmark of the Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion is the recognition of a featured marque or individual. This year it honors the Chevrolet Corvette, long considered America’s definitive sports car and celebrating its 60th anniversary in 2013.
Participating cars are divided into race groups based on type, engine size and era.
Competition is fierce, as the drivers speed around the racetrack in highly valued, often irreplaceable vehicles. Rolex rewards all group winners for their endeavors, but only one will receive a highly prized Rolex timepiece and the ultimate accolade: the Rolex Award of Excellence, presented to the driver who excels in the spirit of the weekend. Rolex has been Title Sponsor of the Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion since it was renamed in 2010. (From 2001-2009, Rolex sponsored the Rolex Monterey Historic Automobile Races, which originally began in 1974, at this venue.)
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