Blenheim Palace Classic & Supercar

September arrived and it was time for a new event for me.. having seen the calibre of cars on show at Blenheim Palace in previous years I knew I had to make an effort to get there in 2018

Sunday morning and the sun had made an appearance again after the awful weather we'd been having after the recent heatwave. Headed off down the M6 to pick up my friend Arron and set off for Blenheim.

We arrived a little later than expected with the traffic on the way and a stop for breakfast of course! We got ourselves parked up, eventually found the press marquee and then went to explore the show.

First up was the brand new Aventador SVJ making its UK debut, the track focussed hardcore final version of the legendary Aventador was a stunning looking thing. Opinions have been divided on the launch colour but personally I thought it looked stunning!

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After a good look around the SVJ we decided we had waited long enough to explore the main courtyard area where all the really special machines were displayed. They were set out in eight main areas, ranging from hypercars to purely McLaren, the evolution of the supercar and of course with it being Porsche's 70th anniversary two sections for open top 911s and 911 GT cars!

You can probably guess where I headed first.. of course it was the hypercar section and it certainly didnt disappoint. Some incredible machines on display from the Brabham BT62 track car to the Bugatti Chiron and not one but two Pagani Zondas!

These sections were roped off so getting any frontal shots was difficult with the crowds around the cars, thankfully I was able to get behind the ropes and shoot the cars from the rear avoiding the crowds and capturing the stunning backdrop of Blenheim Palace, the birthplace of none other than Winston Churchill!

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Even though it was around midday by now there were still some additional cars showing up and of course the most special had to be displayed in the courtyard no matter what time they arrived. Possibly the star of the show for me was the Ferrari F12 TDF in a lovely dark blue that looked stunning in the bright sunshine of the day. 

Even though the 812 Superfast has come along I still think the TDF is Ferrari's most desirable car on the road at the moment. Sad to see no LaFerrari on show but the TDF more than made up for that!

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After a good look around the main courtyard we headed off to grab a coffee and have a look around some of the club and dealership stands. Even over there the calibre of cars was incredible, two Enzo's, Veyron, Zagato Aston Martin and a Ferrari F40 to name but a few.

As it was Porsche's anniversary year lots of clubs were in attendance with over 400 Porsches on display in total. A stand out one was this crazy Turbo with what looked like two wings on the back! The noise from this thing was incredible and it nearly cooked me alive standing directly behind the exhausts as the owner revved the engine for the waiting crowds and their smartphones!


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Having explored all the cars on display we took a stroll around the formal gardens at the rear of the palace. Sadly a lot of this area was out of bounds due to the marquees being dismantled from Salon Prive that was held on the lawns in the days before classic and supercar. 

The view of the rear of the palace is superb from the garden area and made even better by the beautiful blue skies we were lucky to have that day!

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After a look around the gardens it was almost time for the drivers parades and the trophy presentations for various categories like best in class and the peoples choice.

Headed over to the display area and after a bit of jostling for position with the other photographers I managed to capture most of the shots I was hoping for.

This stunning McLaren 675LT spider was the winner of the peoples choice award and was certainly a worthy winner. Most cars exited down the main driveway with some looping back around for a great photo opportunity in front of the palace. You've probably guessed this is the feature photo for this blog! The LT caused quite a stir with the crowds on its way back to the courtyard as you can see from the crowds lining the route!

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The next big award was the Best in Show award from Pirelli, the main sponsor of the event and this was a tough one to call. How do you choose between the amazing line up of truly special cars.

The well deserved winner was none other than the Pagani Zonda Oliver Edition! This is not just any Zonda but a one off car that is owned by an 8 year old child!!! The car was specially commissioned for the 8 year old even after the Zonda production had long finished. Being based on the 760RS model the owner then hired the services of a GT champion race driver to develop the incredible rear wing that has become the cars signature feature!

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All the trophies had now been presented and the crowds treated to seeing some of these amazing cars on the move down the main driveway to the palace so we headed off back to the main courtyard. Most of the spectators had left now and the show was at an end. I had wondered why the Chiron wasnt part of the parade and it became clear that the driver hadn't returned to his car! Quite strange to see the Bugatti sat all alone after the hordes of crowds that had surrounded it all day!

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So that was that, all finished and the final cars were led out of the courtyard when their drivers returned. Hearing the mighty BT62 fire up and roll out was a nice stroke of luck being in the right place at the right time. 

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What an event it had been. I had heard a few people mentioning the cars were not quite to the level they were in 2017 but this being my first year at Blenheim I was very impressed and will certainly be a permanent on my calendar in the future!

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