Richard Mille And Arts & Elégance Chantilly: Now This Is Stylish
Richard Mille is an extreme automobile enthusiast. That is not a secret. In fact, you could almost say that Mille’s brand has been built around his love of automobiles and racing.
Therefore, it was a natural fit for the brand to partner with car event specialist Peter Auto in reviving an entertaining French tradition from the 1920s that had disappeared.
The result is the Chantilly Arts & Elégance, an event produced with all the panache you would expect from Richard Mille.
On September 6, 2015, a sizable crowd of more than 13,000 gathered at the Château de Chantilly, just outside of Paris, to celebrate the second edition of the Chantilly Arts & Elégance.
This number represents a 35 percent increase in visitors over the 2014 edition – and it is a number that illustrates France’s fondness for this event.
The captivating weekend commenced with a polo tournament organized by Richard Mille ambassador Pablo Mac Donough at the Polo Club de Chantilly. The 10-goal Argentinian is one of the world’s best polo players (see Polo: The Sport Of Kings, And Thanks To Richard Mille, Yours Truly).
But the biggest draw of the event is the showing of some of the world’s finest automobiles, allowing visitors to rediscover the elegance of the cars of yesteryear with bodywork sculpted by some of the greatest names in automotive design.
A panel of nearly 40 renowned experts judged three automobile competitions taking place during the Sunday: the Concours d’Elégance, the Concours d’Etat, and the Concours des Clubs.
The Richard Mille “Best of Show” prize went to Evert Louwman’s 1936 Mercedes 500 K Special Roadster, which was released on loan from the Louwman Museum for this event.
BRM P 115 H16 from 1967
But perhaps for us watch fans, the most interesting car of the event belonged to none other than Richard Mille himself.
Mille has a known penchant for 1960s and ‘70s Formula 1 cars. So it comes as little surprise that Mille had the chance of winning a prize at the event with one of his own.
He was, in fact, awarded the Alain Figaret prize for finest Formula 1 car: his BRM P 115 H16 lightweight chassis 01 from 1967, a unique model, attracted the most positive attention of the jury. Its 16-cylinder, H-formation, 3.0-liter engine is considered to be one of the most complex car engines ever created.
But perhaps even more interesting is its history. This car was built by British Racing Motors in 1967. It was entered into the last five Grand Prix races of 1967 and the first one of 1968. In those 1967 races, none other than Sir Jackie Stewart was the driver, while Mike Spence drove it in the 1968 race.
Though it finished none of the races it was entered into due to various engine and transmission failures, the car – whose monocoque chassis comprises a magnesium alloy – is a bona fide piece of racing history.
For a real feel for the weekend’s aesthetically pleasing events, watch this video by The Watches TV. And mark your calendar for the third edition of the Chantilly Arts & Elégance, which is set to take place on September 4, 2016.