From 15-18 August, during four action- packed days, California celebrated the legacy and the future of the automobile, paying homage to its on-going influence on the modern world. Attracting an array of international manufacturers, competitors and spectators, the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance®, the Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion, The Quail, A Motorsports Gathering and the Pebble Beach Tour d’Elegance® presented by Rolex, showcased beautiful, pioneering and innovative vehicles. As part of its almost 85- year association with motor sport, Rolex has supported classic car events since 1997, highlighting the Swiss watch brand’s continued commitment to ground- breaking engineering.

Mark Webber, Rolex Testimonee and multiple Formula 1® race winner, described his visit to the Pacific Coast: “California is synonymous with extraordinary cars and style. Coming here for the first time, I’ve been amazed by the variety of motoring activity. We’ve seen unbelievable cars from all around the world at The Quail and at the Concours, while at the race track it was great to see the cars being pushed to the limit.” Emphasizing the level of excellence on display, Webber continued: “It has been staggering to see the passion, the patience and the painstaking love that the owners put into getting these cars to this extraordinary level. Both Rolex and classic car events reflect the meticulous precision it takes to make something elegant and robust – something that is timeless and forever.”

As the sun set on this week of motoring activities, it was the 1931 Bentley 8 Litre Gurney Nutting Sports Tourer that was crowned ‘Best of Show’ at the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance®. Embodying style and authenticity, it was only fitting that in Bentley’s centenary year one of the brand’s cars took top honours. Following the prize giving ceremony, owner Sir Michael Kadoorie said: “I feel very privileged to be the recipient of the ‘Best of Show’ and it is extra special as Bentley is celebrating 100 years. Reaching such a milestone says a lot about the people who have put in a great deal of effort to enrich the Bentley name. To win a Rolex watch, thanks to this wonderful car, is a great pleasure.”

The event began when the cars rolled onto the 18th fairway at Pebble Beach Golf Links® during Dawn Patrol. As the fog lifted, the cars on show, all of varying provenances, eras and designers, were judged in their respective classes by over 100 technical judges, before the ‘Best in Class’ winners and subsequently the ‘Best of Show’ were announced. Away from the 18th hole, leading car manufacturers revealed highly anticipated new models while the concept lawn exhibited pioneering inventions.

The acclaimed WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca played host to the four-day Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion as racing cars spanning a century – from 1910 to 2013 – took to the track across 14 categories. Spectators were enthralled by the sights and sounds as these vintage automobiles re-enacted motor sport history. In the paddock, prominent constructors showcased cars from a variety of motor racing disciplines while the visiting public had the chance to meet the drivers and witness the mechanics fine-tune the vehicles. The International Motor Sports Association (IMSA), the featured marque of this year’s event, proudly displayed over 100 of its most successful cars to commemorate the organization’s 50th anniversary. The event encapsulates the spirit of motor racing and Rolex’s enduring support of the sport, as cars from across the decades compete like they were originally built to, around a challenging 11-turn, 3.602 km (2.238 mile) circuit.

The Quail, A Motorsports Gathering hosted 6,000 guests as automobiles and motorcycles competed to reach the Rolex Circle of Champions. The garden party atmosphere, showcasing vintage and futuristic cars, global cuisine and fashion, takes place annually on the greens of The Quail Lodge & Golf Club in Carmel. This year, the launch of the Bugatti Centodieci, the debut of the Acura Type S Concept and the US reveal of the Lotus Evija, made headlines as manufacturers looked to the future. As the day drew to a close, the 1931 Stutz DV 32 Convertible Victoria by Le Baron was honoured as the 2019 ‘Rolex Best of Show’. Gracing the stage with her family to collect the award was Caroline Cassini who reflected on the significance of this week of motoring events: “These festivities promote lots of camaraderie but really it is all about these wonderful works of art – the cars at The Quail are rolling sculptures. This Stutz has been in our family for a while now, and it is definitely a very special car.”

As the sun shone down on Portola Road, a remarkable collection of cars from across the ages lined up for the Pebble Beach Tour d’Elegance® presented by Rolex. Bringing to life the history of the automobile, this exquisite motorcade travelled along portions of the famous 17-Mile Drive and down Highway 1, crossing Bixby Bridge, before returning to Ocean Avenue in Carmel-by-the-Sea for lunch. The diverse line-up of vehicles provided aficionados with a preview of the spectacular field to be shown at the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance®, and was a fitting way to start Rolex’s long weekend of automotive activities in California.

Rolex’s commitment to motoring excellence and timeless style dates back to the 1930s, when Sir Malcolm Campbell broke land speed records with a Rolex timepiece on his wrist. To this day, the Swiss watch brand continues to honour the influential role of the automobile, paying respect to the designs of the past while appreciating the cutting-edge cars of the present and future.