These were our best images from 2017, Part 2

And just like that, another year is over. Over the course of 2017, our photographers have travelled the world to capture the most magical automotive moments for Classic Driver. These are our finest images from 2017 and the fascinating stories behind them…

Always a summer staple on our calendars, the Goodwood Festival of Speed is nothing if not an overload of the senses. This was the 2017 event

As was the case at almost all events in 2017, Ferrari’s 70th birthday was celebrated in fine fashion at Goodwood with a gathering of Prancing Horses beneath the central sculpture, complete with speeches, flag waving, fireworks, and the Italian national anthem. 

Since 2015, Alfa Romeo’s sensational collection of heritage cars has been housed in a new museum truly befitting of their majesty. We paid a visit to the so-called ‘time machine’ in Arese, near Milan.

Unbeknownst to many, the classic car scene in Belgium is thriving, thanks to such specialists as Albion Motorcars. We couldn’t resist a trip over the channel. 

Look a little closer at a Facel Vega and it’s easy to understand why the glamorous French saloons were reserved for ‘the few who own the finest’. 

In the late 1960s and early ’70s, Sir Paul Vestey joined the European travelling motorsport circus and raced as a privateer in what is now considered the most golden of eras. We joined him and one of his fabulous old Prancing Horses for a bit of lunch. 

The world’s biggest historic motorsport festival, the Silverstone Classic bore witness to over 1,000 racing cars in 2017. 

This wind-cheating Fiat-Abarth claimed nine endurance speed records, earning it the nickname ‘La Principessa’. We arranged a rendezvous atop Fiat’s former Lingotto plant… 

When we finally met ‘La Principessa’, it had already starred in the Villa d’Este Concorso d’Eleganza earlier in the year and was set to take its moment in the Californian sunshine at Pebble Beach. 

The sprawling Goodwood estate is so much more than just the home of the Members’ Meeting and Revival. We took a plucky British sports car to the new Farmer, Butcher, Chef restaurant to prove that Goodwood is a destination all year round.

A leisurely summer road trip across Europe, sampling three British motoring icons from Jaguar Land Rover Classic’s incredible Heritage Collection — well, that’s what was supposed to happen.

Coldplay’s bassist Guy Berryman has a burning passion for classic cars. On the eve of his band’s 2017 American tour, we learned the extent of it.

Close your eyes and picture the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance, but for boats. Now open them and revel in Rémi Dargegen’s stunning gallery from the 2017 Lake Tahoe Concours.

In addition to seeing countless million-dollar classics stretching their legs on the open roads, the annual Pebble Beach Tour d’Elegance provides a first look at who’s in the running for some silverware at the prestigious Concours d’Elegance…

If you want to see automotive elegance exemplified, then be sure to head straight to the links of Pebble Beach next summer for the world’s most important concours d’elegance

Perhaps the most prestigious prize in the classic car world, Best of Show at this year’s Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance was awarded to Bruce R. McCaw’s 1929 Mercedes-Benz S Barker Tourer

Seeing the world’s finest classic cars lining the fairways of a golf course is one thing, but witnessing them at full-chat around a circuit as history-steeped as Laguna Seca is another thing entirely…  

RM Sotheby’s grossed 132.8m US dollars at its 2017 Monterey sale, 22.5m dollars of which was earned by the ex-Stirling Moss Aston Martin DBR1… 

Meanwhile, Gooding & Company’s star car proved to be the ex-Le Mans Porsche 917K, which garnered 14.08m dollars, smashing the marque world record. 

Between them, David and James Cottingham of DK Engineering have raced this exquisite Ferrari 500 TRC over 150 times in the last 37 years, during which it involuntarily became the proud family workhorse. We paid the car a visit ahead of its appearance at the Goodwood Revival…

‘Start ’em young’, that’s what we say. Always a highlight of the Goodwood Revival, the Settrington Cup for pedal-powered Austin J40s inspires as much competition from the parents as it does the children driving them… 

A once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, we rode shotgun in an Ecurie Ecosse Jaguar XK120 in a cavalcade of the great Scottish racing team’s Flag Metallic Blue beauties… 

As always, racing legends turned out in droves to experience the magic of the Goodwood Revival… 

Who better to ask for some pearls of racing wisdom than Credit Suisse ambassadors — and certified racing legends — Alain de Cadenet, Jochen Mass, and Derek Bell? 

We met the man behind the magical Nürburgring pit lane recreation at this year’s Revival, complete with period signage, accurate lighting, appropriately miserable weather, and an assembly of racing cars that actually raced at the ’Ring in 1957… 

There’s no other event on the calendar where looking good is as important as coming first on the track. These were the best styles from the 2017 Revival

With over 280 acres of land, there was plenty of room to roam around the gardens of Chantilly Domaine at the 2017 Arts & Elegance, searching for your own favourite Big Five mechanical animals.

’Twas the night before the inaugural Lamborghini concours in Neuchâtel, and deep beneath a hotel, a dream space for Raging Bulls became a reality. Rémi Dargegen caught the moment… 

At the first Lamborghini Concorso d’Eleganza in Neuchâtel, Switzerland, the boundaries between design, architecture, and art were consistently blurred. Even the star of the show seemed to have flown in from a completely different world.

Two milestone feats of design, the Aston Martin DB4 and the Concorde, came together at Brooklands for an interview with Historics at Brooklands’ director Edward J. Bridger-Stille. 

The history-steeped banking of the Autodrome de Linas-Montlhéry reverberated with the sound of horsepower once again in 2017, as a mouth-watering selection of historic and modern competition cars took to the temple of speed for Les Grandes Heures Automobiles.

Of all the concept cars designed by Marcello Gandini on behalf of Bertone, the Lancia Sibilo from 1978 is probably the oddest creature. Owner and collector Corrado Lopresto invited us for a test-flight.

After driving this fabulous Audi RS2 earlier this year, about the only thing we could liken it to was Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde’s long-lost brother. 

While Marcello Gandini’s Lamborghini Bravo concept was revealed in 1974, it took three decades for this baby bull to finally become a success. 

The last of the line of the ‘proper’ coach-built Aston Martins, the Vantage Le Mans was an entirely unnecessary, yet wonderfully ridiculous, last hurrah for the 30-year-old V8 range of models.

There were feelings that Paul Newman’s Rolex Daytona might make a record price at Phillips’ New York sale in October, but no one could have anticipated that it would sell for 17.8m US dollars. 

In what was just another day at the office for Sam Hancock, we joined him in his fabulous dark green Ferrari 456 on the way to Rockingham, where he was due to shake down a monstrous Aston Martin DBR9. 

With the temperature dropping and the nights drawing in, we arranged a thunderous rendezvous with a full-fat and ferociously fast Ford GT40. Like the horns of Jericho, let’s just say the residents of sleepy Hampshire could hear us coming.

Skinny-dipping in the Arctic Ocean, yoga in an igloo — there are many ways to winterize your immune system. For Classic Driver Editor-in-Chief Jan Baedeker, he tried a late autumn ride in McLaren’s new 570S Spider — and caught a serious cold.

Vauxhall has never been known for its flamboyant design. But at the London Motor Show in 1970, the British company suddenly broke from its shackles with a highly unusual concept car — the Wayne Cherry-designed SRV.

The Brandoli name is revered in Ferrari circles — for if your precious Prancing Horse has seen better days and is in need of some tender-loving care, there’s no better place to take it than this Modena-based workshop.

Visit the quaint market town of Olney and you’ll find the sleepy streets are littered with Aston Martins. But no one bats an eye, because one resident, Desmond J. Smail, has lived there for 50 years and just so happens to be one of the world’s foremost experts on the marque.

Archivist Ronald Stern is perhaps the ultimate ‘tifoso’ — who better, then, to show us around the new Ferrari: Under the Skin exhibition at the London Design Museum?

London’s most iconic cars per square metre can be found at Fiskens’ mews.

The explosive popularity of Singer Vehicle Design’s exquisitely restored Porsche 911s has led founder Rob Dickinson to team up with watch designer Marco Borraccino to radically reimagine an iconic 1970s sports chronograph.

The Danish family behind Lego, the popular plastic brick, is one consumed by cars. We spent the day with Anders Kirk Johansen, grandson of Lego’s founder, and a special Mercedes-Benz.

Art dealer Kenny Schachter doesn’t differentiate between the pieces he trades and the classic cars he collects. We spent a day in London ogling the exquisite automotive and artistic gems in his Kensington office, before hopping in his Renault 5 Turbo and heading to Mayfair for lunch.

Tim Bent’s cottage in the woods is what fairy tales are made of: rustic charm, blankets of fallen leaves, a wall of woods, magical animals — African water buffalo, anyone? And this fable wouldn’t be complete without an unlikely hero — enter the Land Rover Defender.

Photos: Tom Shaxson / Rémi Dargegen / Alex Lawrence / Mathieu Bonnevie / Robert Cooper / Amy Shore / Peter Aylward / Alexander Schlosser

You can find Part 1 of our ‘Best images of 2017’ feature here