Over 100 vehicles are participating in the 56th Edition of The Statesman Vintage & Classic Car Rally, which will be held in the national capital on January 15.
The 1914 John Morris fire engine, owned by the Rail Museum, and smaller vintage and classic cars will be the centre of attraction of the Rally.
The pre-judging of the participating vehicles to check their originality and restoration among other parameters commenced at Modern School, Barakhamba Road, on Friday.
During the first day of the prejudging session, Rakesh Jain, one of the judges of the Rally, said: “This time 50 per cent smaller vintage and classic cars are participating in the Rally.”
He said that on the final day, that is the day of the Rally, all the participants will be given a particular time speed which they have to follow. Participants from outside Delhi will also be showing their vehicles in the Rally.
“Amarjeet Singh Sodhi with 1964 Morris Minor has come from Chandigarh. The 1964 Morris Minor is a classic car,” Jain said, adding that a total of five Jeeps will also be taking part in the Rally.
During the prejudging session, Aniruddha Mittra, marshal from the panel of judges of the Rally, said: “This year, a total of 123 vehicles are participating in the Rally.”
These vehicles are categorized into vintages, classics, post-war and other categories, Mittra said. There are also women participants in the Rally.
The rally in Delhi will be flagged off from the Statesman House on Barakhamba Road in the heart of the national capital.
On the day of the Rally, the participating vintage and classic cars will head to Noida and return to the National Stadium near the India Gate. The prize distribution ceremony will be held at the National Stadium.
The Statesman has been organizing this prestigious Rally since 1964 in Delhi. On March 6 last year, owing to Covid-19 restrictions, The Statesman held a vintage car ‘display’ instead of a full-fledged car rally.
The Statesman Vintage & Classic Car Rally is an annual event that takes place in Delhi and Kolkata. It’s one of the oldest, continuously-run events in India and the sub-continent. First organised in 1964 in Delhi, the rally was taken to Kolkata in 1968.
Major attractions of the event are assembly of vintage and classic cars, followed by a drive through the city where cars are assessed for originality and performance on the road section, display of period and fancy dress, grand parade and live music.
The owners of the cars eagerly look forward to the rally as it gives them a unique opportunity to drive their well-maintained machines on modern roads.