January 16, 2023
NEW DELHI – The wait to catch a glimpse of the yesteryear cars was over as the 56th Edition of The Statesman Vintage & Classic Car Rally was held in the national capital on January 15 and Delhi’s pride owners of vintage cars and fans attended the rally to make it a gala event.
The 56th Edition of The Statesman Vintage & Classic Car Rally was jointly flagged off by Indian Oil Corporation Chairman-cum-Managing Director Shrikant Madhav Vaidya, New Delhi Municipal Council (NDMC) Chairman Amit Yadav, Delhi Police Commissioner Sanjay Arora, and Israel’s Ambassador to India Naor Gilon at The Statesman House.
Chairman of The Statesman R P Gupta and Editor and Managing Director of The Statesman Ravindra Kumar were among the prominent those who also graced the occasion.
In his opening remarks, Editor and Managing Director of The Statesman Ravindra Kumar expressed thanks to the owners of the motoring beauties for having preserved their vehicles with so much affection and care.
He also thanked all those who came to view these cars.
Talking to The Statesman after the flagging off ceremony of the rally, Israel’s Ambassador to India Naor Gilon said: “I have a passion for vintage and classic cars.”
“I have an emotional connection with The Statesman Vintage & Classic Car Rally….,” said Gilon.
The Israeli Envoy said that he has an emotional connection with The Statesman Vintage & Classic Car Rally as his year of birth coincides with the date on which the Rally was organised for the first time in 1964 in Delhi.
Lauding The Statesman Vintage & Classic Car Rally, NDMC Chairman Amit Yadav said that it is the event which has been going on for decades and this time this rally was organised on the theme of G-20 Presidency.
“It was a great experience indeed to see the people’s passion and care for their vintage and classic cars,” he said.
Soon after the flagging off ceremony, the participating vintage and classic cars headed to JP Hospital, Greater Noida via Mahamaya overbridge and then took a U-turn to reach Major Dhyan Chand National Stadium near India Gate at 12 pm.
Addressing the audience ahead of the prize distribution ceremony, Indian Oil Corporation Chairman-cum-Managing Director Shrikant Madhav Vaidya hailed The Statesman for organising this prestigious rally.
Vaidya said that Indian Oil Corporation is in the business of mobility whether it is conventional fuels like petrol, diesel or any other forms of energy.
“Indian Oil will remain market leader in all mobility forms,” he added
The prize distribution ceremony was held at the Major Dhyan Chand National Stadium at 3 pm.
NDMC Secretary Vikram Singh Malik was also among prominent dignitaries who attended the prize distribution ceremony. He said that it was a nice experience to attend the rally.
Former Prime Minister Lal Bahadur Shastri-owned 1964 Fiat, which was participating for the first time, was one of the centres of attraction of the Rally.
The 1914 John Morris fire engine, owned by the Rail Museum, smaller vintage and classic cars and outstation cars, were among other highlights of the event.
Over 75 vehicles participated in the 56th Edition of The Statesman Vintage & Classic Car Rally. The major attraction of the event was the assembly of vintage and classic cars, followed by a drive through the city where cars were assessed for originality and performance on the road section, display of period and fancy dress, grand parade and live music.
The Statesman has been organising this prestigious rally since 1964 in Delhi. On March 6 last year, owing to Covid-19 pandemic restrictions, The Statesman held the 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 and continuously-run events in India and the sub-continent. First organised in 1964 in Delhi, the rally was taken to Kolkata in 1968.
Aniruddha Mittra, marshal from the panel of judges of the Rally, said that these vehicles are categorised into vintages, classics, post-war ones and others. There were also women participants in the Rally.