Sunday, June 16, 2013
Cholmondeley Pageant of Power 2013
It’s that wonderful time of year when the sun tries its best to break through the cloud, scores of mouthwatering motors emerge from hibernation, and enterprising petrolheads bring them all together in fields and parks across the north west. It is, if you’re really into wandering around looking at automotive exotica, entirely possible to end up at a car show every single weekend because there’s so many of them across the north west, to the point where you have to start being picky about which ones you go to!
The Cholmondeley Pageant of Power, however, is one I’ll always put down in my diary, because it’s a bombardment to the automotive senses. If you haven’t been – and you should, because it’s only an hour away in the car, in the greener bits of deepest Cheshire – then you’re missing out on a treat. In a nutshell, it involves taking over the grounds of a stately home, turning it into a sort of improvised racetrack and then setting off some of the world’s most exciting cars around it to see how fast they can go. Not only can you get up close to Ferraris and Bugattis and scary Group B rally cars, but you can watch them burning rubber and going flat out too.
I tried totting up the value of the various bits of automotive exotica parked up in the paddock but I lost count when I got to the trio of Le Mans-winning Bentleys – and instead just immersed myself in how stunning these bits of motoring beauty were. I’d try and listen to the loudspeakers for more information for the commentators, but every 30 seconds or so he’d be drowned out by the sound of a Ford GT40 roaring past. Then, if you trapsed past the food stalls and hunted down the rally sections, you could decide whether you’d prefer a Ford Escort RS1800 or a Group B Audi Quattro in your dream garage!
The spectacle of seeing, hearing and even smelling these incredible machines makes the Pageant of Power of what it is, and it was great that thousand of people were enjoying it alongside me, even when it was chucking it down with rain. If you managed to make it to Cholmondeley last weekend, you’ll know why I rate it as one of the best motoring events not just in the north west, but in the whole country. If you didn’t, make sure you jot the dates of next year’s event down in your diary.
It really is that good.
For more pictures and a full report from the event, check out Classic Car Weekly on Wednesday, June 19.