Around 240 collector vehicles will gather April 29 in The Grand Palais in Paris for the start of the 2019 Tour Auto Optic 2000, a rally that includes competition on the Dijon-Prenois, Magny-Cours, Charade and Le Mans racing tracks, as well as 10 special stages.
The event is open to vehicles produced between 1901 and 1961. It is inspired by the historic Tour de France Automobile, is organized by Peter Auto and ends May 4 in Deauville.
One feature of the event is the “mini tour” that puts children ages 7-12 into the passenger’s seat of some of the cars. In the past 8 years, more than 7,000 children have taken part in the on-board educational experience.
‘Roof of the World’ adventure continues
As the Tour Auto Optic gets underway, another road rally, the “Roof of the World” Trans-Himalayan Adventure that began April 20 continues until May 10.
Twenty teams are taking part in the drive through China, Tibet, Nepal and India being staged by Rally Round Ventures.
“We first visited the region in 2015 with the Thunder Dragon Rally but we are reaching new heights on this event,” said rally director Liz Wenman. “We have kept the entries limited due to the intense nature of the terrain as we head for the plateau of the Himalayas.”
Vehicles competing include 1925, 1937 and 1938 Rolls-Royces, a 1925 Bentley, 1927 Nash, as well as a 1952 Studebaker Champion. The event began in Chengdu in the Sichuan region of China with an official finish line in Kathmandu, Nepal. However, from there, the cars will continue on to Varanasi, India.
“While other events have travelled along the southern foothills of the Himalayas, we will be crossing the range from north to south,” Wenman said.
“Our route is not for the faint-hearted – crews will drive at high altitude and tackle astonishing roads and mountain tracks as they visit the magical city of Lhasa, the lost Western Tibetan Kingdom of Guge, sacred Mount Kailash and Everest Base Camp.”
Salon Prive announces GT Tour
In its 14th year, Salon Prive, a concours d’elegance, is adding the Salon Prive GT Tour, a 2-day, 200-mile drive in southern England for 80 sports, GT and supercars on September 7-8. The route includes visits to the historic Brooklands racing circuit.
The event ends September 8 at Blenheim Palace, site of the new Salon Prive Classic & Supercar show.
For more information, visit the GT Tour website.
AACA tour calendar
Closer to home, the Antique Automobile Club of America has several upcoming tours for vintage vehicles, including the Southeastern Divisional Tour, April 29-May 1 in Wilmington, North Carolina; the 66th Texas Tour, scheduled for May 16-19 in Texas’ Hill Country; The Founders Tour, June 2-7 at Seward, Nebraska; the Eastern Spring Nationals Tour, June 26-29 at Parsippany, New Jersey; the National Vintage Tour, August 4-8 at Kinston, Ontario; and the 74th Revival AAA Glidden Tour, September 22-27 at Rock Hill, South Carolina.