New magazine rates the most influential people in collector car world

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Goodwood Festival of Speed is a garden party with cars on a 12,000-acre estate | Goodwood photo

Several of them organize events. Some operate museums. A few are dealers. Some run auction companies. One is a Duke. One and a half of them are women. And according to the new quarterly magazine, Magneto, they are the most influential people in the collector car world.

Duke of Richmond

We’re not going to hold you in suspense. Topping the magazine’s ratings is the Duke of Richmond, AKA Charles Gordon-Lennox and formerly the Earl of March, who each year hosts the Goodwood Festival of Speed, Goodwood Revival and other collector car events on his family’s 12,000-acre British estate.

OK, and while we’re at it, we’ll share the news that Nos. 2, 3, 4 and 5 on the Magneto list of influence are Americans, in order — Jay Leno, McKeel Hagerty, Craig Jackson and Peter Mullin.

No. 8 in the rankings is Sandra Button, chair of the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance and one of only two women included; the other is Sylviane Peter, who with her husband, Patrick, shares 10th place on the list because of the various vintage races and rallies they operate.

The listings are interesting not only for who is included (among them Luftgekuhlt Porsche show founders Patrick Long and Howie Idelson at No. 43), but for the text that explains why the magazine’s editors included each in the places they are ranked. 

Jay Leno

For example, of Leno: “If there’s a ‘man of the people’ who’s directly championed the collector car world to the masses more than any other, it’s Jay Leno.”

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Most of the names on the list are familiar, though Guian Zong (No. 38) was new to me but is a name to note — officially he’s the vice-president of the Classic Vehicle Union of China and, we learn, among those working to open the world’s largest country to classic car imports. 

And while I knew Rob Dickson (No. 46) was the founder of Singer Vehicle Design, I didn’t know he had been vocalist for the rock band Catherine Wheel, or that he’s the cousin of Iron Maiden’s Bruce Dickinson.

Magneto ranks most influential
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A former daily newspaper sports editor, Larry Edsall spent a dozen years as an editor at AutoWeek magazine before making the transition to writing for the web and becoming the author of more than 15 automotive books. In addition to being founding editor at ClassicCars.com, Larry has written for The New York Times and The Detroit News and was an adjunct honors professor at the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University.

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