Earlier this year I took the Bugatti Veyron over to Chantilly in France for the concours, at the invitation of its maker. It seemed a fine opportunity to put some miles under a brand new set of Michelin Pilot Super Sports…
It’s always inspiring when somebody is bonkers enough to drive a car like this on the road!
The WCS team and I were taking a stroll through the town after dinner when we came across the Auberge du Jeu de Paume, situated behind The Great Stables on the charming cobbled street which runs through Chantilly. Parked outside on the pavement was a late Range Rover Sport and in front of that a Corvette Z06. Nothing unusual there.
Then we noticed the McLaren P1 GTR. The ‘Lanzante’ markings on it and the presence of a British registration mark – not to mention the tell-tale signs of a 500 mile road trip – revealing that not only was this one of the road-going GTRs converted by the Hampshire firm, but that it had likely been driven there.
Sadly the owner wasn’t in sight, so we reflected on how much fun it would have been to have encountered it on the way down in the Bugatti, and then feverishly retrieved our video gear.
As an immensely exotic track toy, the P1 GTR is a showcase for some phenomenal racing technology even though it was never designed to compete. It’s always inspiring when somebody is bonkers enough to drive a car like this on the road though, and reminds me of my great grandfather Arthur Tate with his amazing road-going Mercedes GP car.