Over 13,500 guests joined Richard Mille at Domaine de Chantilly for a weekend of art in September – both automotive and otherwise. The event opened on a Saturday with a classic car rally, a tradition of Chantilly Arts & Elegance, followed by a second rally, which this year was devoted exclusively to high-performance cars from the 1980s. During the latter, 25 fortunate gentlemen drivers attempted the Pondron hill climb and took to the track on the Mortefontaine testing circuit, in between leisurely cruising around the Chantilly countryside.
Together with event partner Patrick Peter, founder of Peter Auto, Richard Mille welcomed visitors to the 155 hectares of parks and gardens. The luminaries who were present included Jean Todt and Tan Sri Michelle Yeoh, renowned street artist Cyril Kongo, and acclaimed actor, producer and director John Malkovich.
Guests were suitably charmed, admiring highlights of automotive engineering past, present and, in some instances, the future. Custom bodywork from world-renowned design houses sat alongside motor racing classics and contemporary creations. The famed coachbuilder Zagato unveiled a motorbike for Italian two-wheeled manufacturer MV Agusta for the first time.
Todt, who is president of the Federation Internationale de l’Automobile, was further honoured by celebrations of his 50th career anniversary. The former architect of Scuderia Ferrari’s revival as a Formula One superpower was reunited with racing cars from past motorsport exploits: the Scuderia F1, the Peugeot 205T16 and the 504 Rallye Group 4 – which won first prize in the category devoted to his career.
While most of the weekend saw attendees enjoying the rolling lawns of the property, in the shade of a quintessential French chateau, the three automobile competitions were a tense scene given the quality of metal present. A jury of 40, including Todt, passed judgement on three categories: Concours d’Elegance to distinguish constructors and their avant-garde vehicles, Concours d’Etat for collectors of owners of classic cars, and Grand Prix de Clubs for clubs that demonstrated exemplary commitment to preserving the history of the automobile.
In Grand Prix des Clubs, Club Amicale Tricyclecariste de France were rewarded for its mise-en-scene and presentation. For the coveted single entrant competitions, a 1938 Alfa Romeo 8C 2900B with Touring bodywork took home Best of Show in Concours d’Etat, while a DS E-Tense received top honours from the assembly for Concours d’Elegance.
Meanwhile, in the Jeu de Paume hall, the ‘Grand Conde, rival of the Sun King?’ exhibition displayed over 120 works, including prestigious loans from some of the most important museums in the world, and historical documents.