Grand Prix: each car has its own story

The (delicate) art of restoration

When Idronnai’s Benoit Cracchi dug up this Renault 5 Alpine Coupe, the car was almost a wreck. Only after …

The (delicate) art of restoration

When Idronnai’s Benoit Cracchi unveiled this Renault 5 Alpine Coupe, the car was almost a wreck. It was only after extensive restoration work that this little marvel from the late 1970s was able to regain all its splendor. A rebirth that will also be a baptism of fire this weekend for its pilot, for whom it is a first time in the streets of the royal city. He drives in the category Historic Touring Car Champion (HTCC).


Tuner Luis Quintino (left) and driver Benoît Cracchi have made this Renault 5 Alpine Coupe a marvel.

Kevin Estrade

It rolls for MG

Opposite the Palais Beaumont, Michel Lablanche exhibits for the first time his 1961 MG 1600 MK II. “It was made for the United States, with disc brakes in front, the first for the time being,” explains the proud owner who brought this little gem from the United States. “You have to roll it, at least once a week,” he says.

At the Palais Beaumont, Michel Lablanche exhibits his 1961 MG.


At the Palais Beaumont, Michel Lablanche exhibits his 1961 MG.

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“It’s a childhood dream,” smiles Benoit Cracci, whose ambition will first be to “have fun.” He can also count on the experience of his coach, Luis Quintino, an old hand in Pau, as he already prepared the R5 Alpine Coupes in the 80s during the Grand Prix. The circle is complete.

Pau, “the last phase”

Swiss driver Cédric Torres came to the Grand Prix with his family. This enthusiast, who lives between Geneva and Lausanne, could not miss the trip to Pau, his third in his career and the second in the Ferdinand Cup. “Pau is the last stage for me. Motorsport, we get stuck quickly, we first start driving on the track, then we run races. There we are already in something incredible, and then we discover the circuit in Pau. And it increases the emotions. It is true that there is a little risk with the rails, but the game is worth the effort “, the driver insists.

Cédric Torres can count on his first supporter: his son.


Cédric Torres can count on his first supporter: his son.

Kevin Estrade

To accurately prove all his love for the Pau route, Cédric Torres has pasted a giant sticker on the roof of his Porsche that reads “Thank you Pau”. “It should look good”, the pilot smiles delighted at his small effect. To perpetuate his visit to Pau, the Swiss has planned everything since his field trips are broadcast live on Twitch. It is found under the name: Ferdinand_cup_92.

A hard-working Renault

This is a utility that looks good and stays that way. Below the Sernam Hall, the 1956 Renault Juvaquatre (manufactured in 138,000 units between 1938 and 1956) shows its owner on the page: “Domaine de Sarros, Jurançon, Organic Wines”. For this beautiful 4 CV has – almost always – worked.

The 1956 Juvaquatre was used by a carpenter before being used for deliveries to Sarro's estate.


The 1956 Juvaquatre was used by a carpenter before being used for deliveries to Sarro’s estate.

“It belonged to a carpenter from Tarbes,” says winemaker Hugues Chapal, who does not let others drive the car. “It was his workshop, he used it with the back seats down, more like a van than a station wagon. He had all his tools in it. When he stopped his activity, “she stayed in a corner of the garden and became a wreck. It was bought by a mechanic from Mont-de-Marsan, who completely renovated it, he found its original color, this capri blue”.

Hugues Chapal therefore bought the shiny car 3 years ago, it was his first vintage car, even though he dreamed of being able to afford another. With him, Juvaquatre returns to work. He takes it to markets to sell his wine and uses it for deliveries. “Customers are happy to have their wine brought to them in this car. And when people turn their heads when they see it, it can bring us new ones!”

Fast as lightning

Around the grandstand in Beaumont Park, a 1966 Jaguar is attracting attention. It was produced in 30,000 units and was the “fastest in the world” luxury sedan in 1966 with a top speed of 200 km / h. Enough to force him to have good brakes to take the Poeymirau hairpin.

This Jaguar was the fastest luxury sedan in the world in 1966.


This Jaguar was the fastest luxury sedan in the world in 1966.

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A dream comes alive

Its yellow color sets it apart from the thousands, giving it an extra je-ne-sais-quoi that would make it almost more beautiful than all the others. She is the Alexis Mk 18 Formula Ford that Christophe Vidal will drive all weekend in the category of the same name. A small work of art that he pampers with his mechanic, Frédéric, and which he shows for the first time in Pau.

Christophe Vidal (left) and his mechanic, Frédéric, drive for the first time in Pau.


Christophe Vidal (left) and his mechanic, Frédéric, drive for the first time in Pau.

Kevin Estrade

“For me, driving in Pau Ville is a dream. I came with my father to watch the races when I was a child, ”this Lannemezan resident remembers with a touch of emotion. Despite only 74.1 kilometers between his city and the turn at the station, it will be a first for him between the Pau tracks. The first tests have clearly won him: “It’s super nice to drive here”.

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