Automobiles | RM Sotheby's

Coupe des Alpes: Alpine Views and Vintage Vehicles

By Sotheby's

T he Coupe des Alpes Alpine rally has been an unmissable event since 1988, bringing together participants from more than 15 countries in hundreds of vintage cars. The event offers three days of driving through the spectacular Alps all the way to the Mediterranean. This year's participants included Emmanuel van de Putte, Managing Director of Sotheby's in Brussels and RM car specialist Paul Darvill. 

Read Emmanuel's diary below...

CARS LINING UP AT THE START LINE OF THE COUPE DES ALPES 2017 IN EVIAN, FRANCE. 

Day One

We departed from Evian at 1.30 with our Jaguar XK120 from 1951, the oldest car of the rally bearing number one! There were more than 40 Porsches participating in this rally with 150 cars driven by many international participants. We were part of the Écurie Lyford team, headed by Thomas Seydoux, art dealer and great Porsche collector who gifted the first Porsche 911 to MoMA one month ago.

We were probably the youngest crew with Paul Darvill, our RM car specialist, as driver. We had extremely sunny weather for the first 150km drive through the Haute-Savoie region. Despite the sporty driving skills needed to handle the Jaguar, we arrived after the first quarter of the participants in Megève.

TAKING IN THE SCENERY ALONG THE ROUTE.

Day Two

After double checking the oil pressure and the clutch that had given us some trouble on our first day we were ready to depart for our second day around 9.30am. It was our longest day of driving, and the first time I had driven a classic car and participated in a rally. A few hours in, and we were getting better at handling the car.

The organisers arranged a picnic and the Lyford team found a perfect spot for enjoying it. We had a late arrival at Alpe-d'Huez.

ALL TEAMS STOPPED FOR A PIT-STOP PICNIC IN THE MOUNTAINS

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Day Three

A glance at the map indicated a morning with more than 200km to drive. We started early and enjoyed the fresh morning leaving the Hautes Alpes for the Alpes-Maritimes. After a fun morning we were arrived in the middle of a lavender field for another giant picnic with all of the rally members. We arrived in Cannes at 5pm in the second half of the participants.

OUR 1951 JAGUAR XK120. 

On crossing the finish line in Cannes, Paul and I won the trophy of Elegance at the award ceremony, reserved for the oldest car of the rally. The Écurie Lyford team won three trophies: Lady Driver, Most Elegant Car and the overall prize for best crew. 

 

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