Monday, 25 September 2017

Motoclassic Wrocław 18 - 20 August 2017

 Click on photos to enlarge - far superior on a larger screen

According to Alexander Duncker, a German publisher, bookseller and writer who issued a list of rural manors, palaces and residences of the Prussian nobility in 1857-1883, a fortified tower with living quarters was built by the Templars in order to ensure the safety of the merchants and their assets. This was what is now known as Topacz Castle. Its excellent present appearance is due to the fact that during World War II none of the buildings suffered any structural damage. In 2002 a Mr. and Mrs. Kurzewscy transformed the building into a luxurious hotel and conference centre.

MotoClassic Wrocław is an assembly of classic cars manufactured between 1886-1990 organized annually at this castle which is situated near Wrocław (formerly Breslau) in Poland. This year the seventh event took place from 18 - 20 August 2017. The CCC was allocated a prestigious position in front of the castle.

Friday 18 August included registration, prelude and inauguration of the event. A column of classic cars, including some of those from the CCC, took part in an exceptional parade that crossed the city of Wrocław in broiling sun and high temperatures. There was a particularly interesting and large contingent of rare Bugattis that had driven from Austria and Holland.

There were also Russian, Czech and Polish classic cars rarely seen in the West. The Polish Army also had a meticulously restored set of trucks, jeeps, guns, dispatch motorbikes, field pieces and soup kitchens. Adjacent to the CCC exhibition of cars, the RREC Polish Section also had a stand.

The Polish Mercedes Benz 'Pagoda' Club also fielded an array of superbly restored motors. 

The designer of the Mercedes_Benz  'Pagoda' Paul Bracq who gave a fascinating lecture on the evolution of the final masterpiece

We were promised a police escort that only materialized at disconnected moments and many cars overheated in the summer heat as a result of being delayed at the many traffic lights. However good humour prevailed! The cars were displayed at the historical Centrum Historii Zajezdnia (Deport History Centre) and Plac Solny. We then crossed the city once again to the revitalized Stadion Olimpijski (Olympic Stadium) where we were given an exciting demonstration of speedway bikes by the Speedway Club WTS Sparta Wrocław.

On the following morning (a public day) Saturday 19 August, there was a presentation of vehicles in the Elegance Contest. Tessa van Arkel, one of the most 'periodly stylish' CCC members, appeared in her special replica-bodied 1933 Bentley 3½ Litre and won an elegance prize. This was presented on the Courtyard Stage with suitable commentary and television coverage by CCC fashion and car photographer Błazej Żuławski. 

Standing beside my 1974 Rolls-Royce Silver Shadow on the same stage I gave an entertaining, even dramatic account, of my participation in 1993 in the exciting first rally around independent Poland since 1912. In this very car I accidentally broke the left bank manifold on a protruding rock whilst crossing a river bed. The skillful repair, hospitality and improvisational skills showed the Poles at their very best.

At Topacz in the afternoon there were many other activities, not especially involving the CCC, which took place in the castle grounds and beyond. In the evening most of us attended the amusing and entertaining Commander's Ball and charity auction.

Sunday 20 August was a rather quieter day open to the public. In the  124 acres of grounds surrounding Topacz Castle some 300 'classic' vehicles had been displayed. To sum up, in rather a short time the CCC has established itself as a strong presence on the classic car scene in Poland.

And an excellent couple of days were enjoyed by the few CCC members who attended and were lyrically rewarded for their efforts. Much thanks to Paul and Tessa van Arkel for their Herculean efforts to get this show on the road!

                                                                                                   Michael Moran (Chairman)

Members who attended:

Paul van Arkel    1965 Aston Martin DB 6
Michael Moran   1974 Rolls-Royce Silver Shadow
Jerzy Bylica          1955 Austin Healey 100/4 BN 1
Tessa van Arkel   1933 Bentley 3½ Litre Special
Błazej  Żuławski

Iain Batty fearlessly lent his Jensen Interceptor to the CCC stand