Sun & Supercars: Premier GT brings the noise to Horsham Piazza Italia
They say the early bird catches the worm and if you were present at Premier GT just after sunrise this past bank holiday Monday this statement couldn't have been truer.
After the deluge that was Piazza Italia 2018, the weather decided to treat us to a short but very sweet heatwave and it was under these blue skies and soaring temperatures that saw over 130 cars meet at Premier GT prior to heading up the A24 to the acclaimed Piazza Italia festival in Horsham.
Assembling at Premier GT were the creme de la creme of automotive exotica. Whatever your supercar preferences, you were well catered for as the supercar variety this year ranged from the latest Lamborghini Aventador SVJ, right through to iconic machines such as the legendary Honda NSX. There was also the rare and the unusual in attendance thanks to a beautiful Porsche Speedster and a lesser spotted Renault Sport Spider.
This year was our largest gathering of supercars yet and saw us take over more parts of Horsham than ever before. With cars departing us in three batches there were waves upon waves of supercars for the waiting public to enjoy through the streets of Horsham.
As you can imagine moving vast numbers of supercars in convoy is somewhat of a logistical challenge, however thanks to the effort of the Blood Bikes from SERV Sussex and the eagerness of our drivers to hit the road it wasn’t long before the convoy was filtering onto the A24 in impressive fashion.
Heading up to Horsham it was fantastic to see many people stopped alongside the road to take in this impressive sight. With the latter convoy featuring 80 cars, it certainly was a sight to behold in the rearview mirror of the lead cars as the convoy appeared to stretch into the horizon.
Heading into Piazza Italia under the warm sun and clear blue skies it was a real pleasure to see so many members of the public flanking the streets of Horsham. With a little encouragement from spectators, it was only polite to blip the throttle pedal as the cars arrived, much to the delight of the waiting crowds. With the sounds of V8s, V10s and V12s reverberating off of the town's buildings, the convoy came to its end in the heart of the town at CarFax.
With cameras at the ready, it was a fantastic opportunity for the public to get up close and personal with some fine machines. It was also great for owners to get the opportunity to show off their pride and joy and take a moment to discuss the ins and outs of their supercars.
With the centre of the town being taken over by the Italian contingent, there was also a lot to see for people that had a passion for cars from the rest of the world with the Brits particularly well represented with a number of McLarens joining in the fun alongside several Aston Martins. These cars were to be found in the Premier GT race paddock over at Park Side.
Undoubtedly a major draw for the crowds this year was the hypercar paddock. A showcase of some of the finest machines that are currently, and have recently been, in production, the hypercar paddock was a celebration of automotive engineering at it’s finest.
Friend of Premier GT and self-professed petrolhead, it was a real honour to host Peter Saywell as he brought a selection of his personal collection along to display. Among this selection were the latest creation from Lamborghini, the Aventador SVJ, a La Ferrari, Porsche 918 and Ferrari 812 Superfast.
In addition to these was the presence of Peters Pagani Zonda PS. A complete one-off, the attention to detail on this machine had to be seen to be appreciated and we must thank Peter for his generosity in bringing these incredible machines along.
Alongside this contemporary metal, there were also a number of classic vehicles to admire and the highlights of these included a variety of immaculately presented historic Fords.
In a recent episode of The Grand Tour, Clarkson, Hammond and May took a look back at the Ford back catalogue and fans of the show would have been pleased to see the stars of that episode were represented at this year's Piazza Italia. This collection included the likes of the Lotus Cortina, Ford Capri, Ford Escort 1600 and the now iconic Ford Cosworth RS500.
In addition to the road legal machines, there was much to admire from a motorsport perspective with a race prepared Jaguar Mark II, Porche Boxster and a Ginetta race car all in attendance.
With the sun shining overhead and a range of entertainment from across the rest of the Piazza Italia festival entertaining the crowds, this year's event was a real sight to behold. An event that was arguably at its largest this year, it was great chatting to the public and the cars owners throughout the day.
An event of this scale requires a significant amount of planning and we couldn’t have done it without the support of all the supercar owners who signed up to show their cars and who also gave up their bank holiday Monday to thrill Horsham. It was a real pleasure to host everyone and meet new and old faces alike.
In addition, we’d like to thank the general public for their enthusiasm and for helping to make the event what it is. Furthermore, special mentions must go to all of those at SERV Sussex who generously assisted the convoy with their blood bikes. We must also thank the team at MotoFx for applying all the Piazza Italia decals onto every single convoy vehicle, we couldn’t have done it without you all.
Thank you Piazza Italia, that was a blast!