Cavallino Classic 27
Tour of Palm Beach

Knotty Nawadhinsukh Words by Knotty Nawadhinsukh
Getting ready for the Tour of Palm Beach (Photo: Author's own)

January of 2018 may have come and gone but without doubt it was a great month. This was because we finally got to attend the Palm Beach Cavallino Classic 27, one of the most anticipated motoring events of the year—and one of our favourites.

Glorious detail of the Ferrari 250 GT SWB Competizione in Ecurie Francorchamps war paint

Although we were met with sunshine as we arrived at Miami International Airport at the early part of the last January week, it was the blustery winds (which turned out to be prevalent throughout the remaining days) that welcomed us as we reached The Breakers in Palm Beach for registration prior to the event. Sizeable waves pounded the famous rocks ferociously as we revisited the panoramic sea view at the back of this majestic hotel in order to first soak in the atmosphere like we did the year before. But no gale force wind or even a hurricane was going to dampen our eagerness to see hundreds or so Ferraris which will be congregating for these next few days (including a special guest appearance from Mercedes-Benz as the featured marque on Sunday). We came far too long a way to get to here to be deterred –and were well prepared with plenty of hair care and grooming products strong enough to withstand any adverse effects from the gusty condition!

Mean F40 in Nero
Graffitied F430 Challenge (Photo: Author's own)

While a number of both vintage and contemporary Ferraris (both racing and GTs) were getting themselves ready for practice and qualifying at the Palm Beach International Raceway in preparation for the track day on the following Friday, the first day of the Cavallino Classic 27 centered on the Tour of Palm Beach.

Elegant 365 GT 2+2 came to take part

Slated as a new activity in place of the Jet Aviation “La Bella Macchina” party at nearby Palm Beach International Airport like in previous years, the tour allowed more chances for the local residents to get a glimpse of many rarely seen (even by Palm Beach standard) Ferrari models driven around on the streets. All participating owners and their steeds were invited to begin at the Breakers, before each then get sent out one-by-one in intervals according to the designated route that would take them to stop at a series of notable checkpoints that dotted around this famous glitzy South Florida town.

Tour line-up in front of the imposing Breakers Hotel
THIS is how you get ready for grand touring around Palm Beach

For those such as us who followed the tour, the day began in style with a nice sumptuous lunch on the front lawn of The Breakers along with the participants prior to the start—exactly right where the Concorso d’Eleganza will be taking place on the Saturday. Once we finished our meals, we headed swiftly to the car park where an eclectic mix of Ferraris from different eras was getting ready.

Thorough look at the 250 GT SWB California Spider AND the Berlinetta
Beautiful 375 America by Pinin Farina receiving final instructions

The main focus when we got there may have been immediately toward the silver 1961 250 GT SWB Berlinetta Competizione, serial number 2445 GT, sporting the Belgian yellow Ecurie Francorchamps team colour across the bonnet (and with the same number “59” when it was raced in the 1962 Le Mans 24 Hours), but the F430 Challenge “Art Car” next to it also caught our attention. This is a well-known car from the Art Basel in Miami Beach a couple of years ago, in which it was painted graffiti-style at the show—live. On the opposite side stood Phil Trigiani’s manacing-looking F40 in black, which for a time before Phil took ownership was adorned in a living room somewhere in Japan! Also in black came the splendid 365 GT 2+2 as it passed by a pair of 250 GT SWBs, one a California Spider with a luscious combination of dark blue and cinnamon interior and the other a silver Berlinetta.

Mighty 288 GTO begins the journey
Super-rare 1951 212 Export Barchetta by Touring at the picturesque Sailfish Club

Around 2pm a yet another black Ferrari, this time an F355 Berlinetta, kicked off the proceedings by being the first leading the group who had lined up on Breakers Row at checkpoint 1. We noticed after lunch that there were no desserts served, and then it dawned upon us as we arrived following the tour that the second checkpoint, the Sailfish Club, was where they were to be provided instead.

Everybody said yes to desserts...
Stylish checkpoint at Tiffany & Co.

The next checkpoint was the charming Colony Hotel where further treats awaited the participants before they headed onward to Tiffany & Co. on the luxurious Worth Avenue to be lavished with a gift for taking part. The Royal Poinciana Plaza was the next stop before the tour returned “home” to The Breakers as the final checkpoint and where the owners and the guests celebrated at the hotel’s elegant HMF bar.

Even the actual 348 Challenge Show Car preferred Tiffany's

It was a great experience to come along with so many Ferraris not only to see them roaming around on public roads but also for getting to see the splendour of Palm Beach community more than last year. There were moments where we had to take the back roads before the group arrived at each destination and were amazed at the residential areas that we passed that were meticulously lined with rows and rows of hedges of varying heights (we had assumed that the higher the hedges, the bigger that estate would be!).

All Photos by (unless otherwise stated)

Following a California on the back streets of Palm Beach