Pebble Beach Prepares for a British Invasion

Pebble Beach BentleyCarmaker Bentley-now in its centennial year-is set to take center stage at the 2019 Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance.

One glance at the event poster makes it clear-created by renowned modern impressionist Alfredo De la Maria of Argentina, the poster features a 1931 Bentley 8 Litre making its way past the crowd on Concours Sunday.

According to the event, Bentleys will constitute about a quarter of this year’s concours competitors, filling six complete classes with several special groupings. Offerings will range from the earliest surviving 3 Litre to a multitude of racing greats and superlative postwar cars.

The car featured on the poster, a highly coveted 8 Litre, was ordered by pioneering Welsh aviator and Brooklands racer Captain Vivian Hewitt. It is the ultimate sporting machine, pairing a short chassis, lightweight body and massive power, the company noted.

“I can confidently say the Bentleys headed our way on this occasion promise to surpass past displays,” said Sandra Button, Concours chairman.

Walter Owen Bentley, who preferred the simple moniker W.O., founded his namesake company on July 10, 1919. He pioneered the use of alloy metals in automotive and aircraft engines, the company noted, and he served at the helm for a dozen years before the financial stress of the Great Depression forced the company’s sale to rival Rolls-Royce.

In that short time, Bentley forged a legacy that survives to this day-as does the Bentley marque, now part of the Volkswagen Group.

“W.O. made an indelible mark on history,” said Peter Hageman, Concours Selection Committee member. “He created heroic cars that were driven to glory by heroic men and women. Their stories fueled the imaginations and desires of a host of early automotive enthusiasts, and they continue to inspire us today.”

The Bentleys driving onto the 18th fairway of Pebble Beach Golf Links on Aug. 18 will meet at a place marking a centennial of its own. As W.O. was creating his company in England, Pebble Beach Resorts was being carved into the West Coast of the United States under the guidance of Samuel F. B. Morse. For a century now, it has served as home to major competitions and champions.

Bentley last claimed the Best of Show trophy at the Pebble Beach Concours in 1965.

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