2019 Pebble Beach Concours: Best of Show Winner

© Rod Hatfield, Automotive Content ExperienceBest of Show
It was an absolutely beautiful day on Carmel Bay at the 69th Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance — the world’s preeminent collector car competition — where the gorgeous 1931 Bentley 8 Litre Gurney Nutting Sports Tourer of the Hon. Sir Michael Kadoorie won the coveted Best of Show trophy. This win carries special meaning, since Bentley was one of the featured marques at this year’s concours in celebration of the brand’s 100th anniversary.

© Rod Hatfield, Automotive Content ExperienceFirst Pebble Beach Win
When asked what it feels like to win the top prize at this celebration of elegance, and among such stiff competition, Kadoorie — a billionaire Hong Kong businessman and hotel owner — exclaimed with a big smile on his face, “I’ll tell you tomorrow, I’m still at a high that I’ve not reached before.” Kadoorie has entered many vehicles at Pebble Beach in previous years, but this was the first time one of his cars has ever received the Best of Show trophy.

© Rod Hatfield, Automotive Content Experience100 MPH Car
The 1931 Bentley and its 8.0-liter engine was designed to go head-to-head with the Rolls-Royce Phantom II which was also new at the time. When he launched the new 8-liter luxury car, W. O. Bentley wrote, “I have always wanted to produce a completely silent, 100 mph car, and now I think we have done it.” In fact, the company guaranteed that the car would be capable of speeds exceeding 100 mph — an impressive claim in 1931.

Only Surviving Copy
This particular Bentley Sports Tourer with its dual cowl and detachable rear windscreen is one of two short-chassis 8 Litres built with this particular Gurney Nutting body style. It is the only surviving copy.

© Rod Hatfield, Automotive Content ExperienceEnjoyable to Drive
Kadoorie took possession of the Bentley in 2010; the car’s complete restoration took about two years. Telling us more about his prize-winning car, Kadoorie enthused: “I’ve done about 2,000 miles in it and I thoroughly enjoy driving it. And you’ll probably see the seat is elevated so I can see out, and that I can reach the pedals.” He went on to exclaim that “the 8 Litre was the ultimate Bentley [at the time],” and that “this [car] is probably W.O.’s best and highest achievement.”

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceWin for Bentley
Surprisingly, a Bentley has not been named Best of Show at the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance since 1965, when a 1927 Bentley 4 ½ liter Vanden Plas Tourer owned by Christopher Coburn took the top honor. It seems fitting and timely that Kadoorie’s win comes in the year that Bentley celebrates its centennial.

© Rod Hatfield, Automotive Content ExperienceHappy Anniversary to Bentley
When asked if the Bentley anniversary made his Best of Show victory even sweeter, Kadoorie reflected, “I think all over the world everybody is celebrating the 100th anniversary of Bentley, and what better place to do this than right here at Pebble Beach. It’s a great moment for the car, a great moment for Bentley, and a great moment for all of us here who can enjoy it.”

© Rod Hatfield, Automotive Content ExperiencePebble Beach Concours Best of Show
1931 Bentley 8 Litre Gurney Nutting Sports Tourer

© Rod Hatfield, Automotive Content ExperiencePebble Beach Concours Best of Show
1931 Bentley 8 Litre Gurney Nutting Sports Tourer

© Rod Hatfield, Automotive Content ExperiencePebble Beach Concours Best of Show
1931 Bentley 8 Litre Gurney Nutting Sports Tourer

© Rod Hatfield, Automotive Content ExperiencePebble Beach Concours Best of Show
1931 Bentley 8 Litre Gurney Nutting Sports Tourer

© Rod Hatfield, Automotive Content ExperiencePebble Beach Concours Best of Show
1931 Bentley 8 Litre Gurney Nutting Sports Tourer

© Rod Hatfield, Automotive Content ExperiencePebble Beach Concours Best of Show
1931 Bentley 8 Litre Gurney Nutting Sports Tourer

© Rod Hatfield, Automotive Content ExperiencePebble Beach Concours Best of Show
1931 Bentley 8 Litre Gurney Nutting Sports Tourer

© Rod Hatfield, Automotive Content ExperiencePebble Beach Concours Best of Show
1931 Bentley 8 Litre Gurney Nutting Sports Tourer

© Rod Hatfield, Automotive Content ExperiencePebble Beach Concours Best of Show
1931 Bentley 8 Litre Gurney Nutting Sports Tourer

© Rod Hatfield, Automotive Content ExperiencePebble Beach Concours Best of Show
1931 Bentley 8 Litre Gurney Nutting Sports Tourer

© Rod Hatfield, Automotive Content ExperiencePebble Beach Concours Best of Show
1931 Bentley 8 Litre Gurney Nutting Sports Tourer

© Rod Hatfield, Automotive Content ExperiencePebble Beach Concours Best of Show
1931 Bentley 8 Litre Gurney Nutting Sports Tourer

© Rod Hatfield, Automotive Content ExperiencePebble Beach Concours Best of Show
1931 Bentley 8 Litre Gurney Nutting Sports Tourer

© Rod Hatfield, Automotive Content ExperiencePebble Beach Concours Best of Show
1931 Bentley 8 Litre Gurney Nutting Sports Tourer

© Rod Hatfield, Automotive Content ExperiencePebble Beach Concours Best of Show
Best of Show Trophy

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