ZOUTE GRAND PRIX® 2014.
However, it is more than just the special surroundings that attract thousands of visitors year after year, when classic vehicles from several generations come together in Het Zoute. The festival has no less than six different events to offer, each of them worth a visit in their own right. The main attraction is without doubt the ZOUTE RALLY®, in which 170 vehicles dating from 1920 to 1965 absolve a reliability trial through the breathtaking polder landscape of Flanders. The participants depart from Knokke Het Zoute to cover 250 kilometres of picturesque country roads. The way is the goal on this rally, but the classic cars are still put through their paces. The time is recorded regularly to produce a ranking. It is a journey through time in which leisurely progress must be reconciled with speed.
Apart from a shorter route covering 150 kilometres, a quarter-mile race is held in Knokke-Heist for the particularly powerful cars. Spectators are able to follow the event at close quarters. Motor racing celebrities such as the former Formula 1 driver Jochen Mass make a point of attending this Belgian event.
Jochen Mass joins the starting line-up in Europe, in a Mercedes-Benz 300 SL Panamerica from the early 1950s. 60 years on, this racing car which successfully crossed South America in 1952 makes a no less spectacular appearance on the roads of Flanders.
Rarities on the fairway.
In addition to the rally, this weekend in October also offers visitors the ZOUTE CONCOURS D’ELEGANCE® by Bank Degroof, where selected automotive treasures are displayed on the local golf course to be admired. Among these extraordinary rarities is the Mercedes-Benz 540 K Streamliner.
The freshly restored 540 K with its streamlined body displayed on the green of the fairway. The futuristic 1938 design of this car is still impressive today.
A meeting of the likeminded.
However, it is not just classic automobiles that can be admired at the ZOUTE GRAND PRIX®. In the ZOUTE TOP MARQUES®, for example, leading automobile manufacturers present their latest models. And in the front rank: the current model series from Mercedes-Benz, forming an impressive line-up along the beachfront. These exclusive cars from Mercedes-Benz fit perfectly into the cosmopolitan image of Knokke-Heist and the automotive festival.
As the sun dips into the cool waters of the North Sea on the horizon, things are coming to radiant life on land at the after-show party.