Tour Auto Optic 2000: let’s go!
The 240 cars in the Tour Auto 2ooo were on display again this year under the superb glass dome of the Grand Palais halfway between Les Invalides and the Champs-Elysées. Before roaring off along the roads of France the competitors went through scrutineering and administrative checks one by one. They made the final adjustments to their “bolides” and the public came to admire these exceptional machines with their meticulously polished bodywork. On Tuesday 30th April at first light the drivers will set off to tackle 2200 kilometres peppered with events on circuits and closed roads. The 28th Tour Auto 2ooo will again provide landscapes as beautiful as they are varied and exceptional fields of historic cars.
The first leg of the 2019 event will be run on Burgundian roads and will end in Dijon. The next day the second one will finish in the historic Rhône-Alpes region. Then it’s off to the Auvergne with a stopover in Vichy. The next challenge for the competitors will be crossing the Centre-Val de Loire region to the town centre in Tours. And finally, the last leg of the Tour Auto will bring the drivers to Deauville on the Normandy coast.
The 28th staging will highlight cars that have marked the history of the race: BMW, Ferrari, Ford GT40, E-Type Jaguar, Lancia Stratos, Ligier JS2, Porsche, Shelby Cobra and other exceptional models produced between 1949 and 1981. It will provide spectators with an opportunity to rediscover vanished English makes like AC Ace Bristol and AC Zephyr, Austin Healey 100/4 M, Frazer Nash Le Mans Coupé, Healey Silverstone, Jowett Jupiter, MGA Twincam, Morris Cooper S, Sunbeam Alpine, Triumph TR2 and TR3 that are honoured this year.
As always Monday brought together competitors, the public, partners and media in the Grand Palais. Thus, a large number of boutiques and activities were laid on among them the photo Optic 2000, the Rebellion pop-up store and the Vicomte A., VL Carré de Soie, Christophe Fenwick and Be Spoke Company boutiques. The visitors also discovered ETAO publications, the Louis Renault strip cartoon, Flippers, Stand 21, ORECA and the Lescot products. Motul’s bus was on show in front of the Grand Palais and from 13:00 onwards there was a Michel Vaillant Exhibition followed by an autograph session.
A party during which competitors, partners and well-known figures talked about their common passion for the motor car brought down the curtain on the first day.
At exactly 06:00 sharp on Tuesday morning the competitors will leave the capital and head for the Vaux-le-Vicomte Château in the Seine et Marne for the official start of the rally, which will be given at 07:00. In the morning they will compete in the first special stage and then go to the Château de Vaux for lunch. The afternoon will be marked by races on the Dijon-Prenois circuit and the leg will finish in the Palais des Sports in the town of Dijon.