Credit Suisse ‘by Invitation Only’ at the 2011 Pebble Beach weekend

“Committed in body and soul” is how racing-driver-turned-TV-commentator Alain de Cadenet describes Credit Suisse’s involvement with the world of classic cars. Over four days last weekend, clients were treated to that promise at the year’s most high-profile car meeting: the 61st Pebble Beach Concours

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‘Pebble Beach’ is, of course, a collective name for nearly a week of car-related activities on the Monterey Peninsula. For passionate car enthusiasts – an accurate description for the Credit Suisse Classic Car Program team, its clients, and of course de Cadenet – there’s an event every day to satisfy the most discerning and experienced.

Credit Suisse’s Pebble programme starts early in the week when it supports the Quail Rally. Described as “a good drive, with good friends, for a good cause”, the relaxed, private event is an opportunity for owners to discover the dramatic scenery of Monterey County and its characteristic Pacific scenery. The perfect way to start a trip to Monterey week – and a terrific fundraiser, for which Credit Suisse is the charity sponsor.

On Thursday, it’s an early start at Collins Field, on Stevenson Drive at Pebble Beach, where participants in the Pebble Beach Tour d'Elegance assemble to start a spirited tour along 17-Mile Drive, down Highway 1 to Big Sur, stopping over in Carmel-by-the-Sea for lunch, before returning to base for a champagne reception.

Credit Suisse ‘by Invitation Only’ at the 2011 Pebble Beach weekend

In motion, be they a snarling ex-Le Mans Ferrari 250 GTO or a timelessly classic pre-War Delahaye, Alfa Romeo or Talbot-Lago, the Tour cars seem more flowing, even further streamlined and – what else can one say? – elegant.

Participation in the Pebble Beach Tour d'Elegance is optional for concours entries. However, should two cars tie on the Sunday, it’s the one that entered the Tour that will win.

Credit Suisse ‘by Invitation Only’ at the 2011 Pebble Beach weekend Credit Suisse ‘by Invitation Only’ at the 2011 Pebble Beach weekend

Naturally enough, entry to such a super-exclusive event is highly sought after, and normally comes only with ownership of an accepted classic car and a place on the 18th Fairway on Sunday. As an Official Sponsor of the Tour d'Elegance, though, Credit Suisse can offer clients the priceless opportunity of completing the Tour in an AMG Mercedes-Benz.

Truly, then, a ‘money can’t buy’ experience, and one that shows the Credit Suisse Classic Car Program’s commitment to achieving the most for its guests.

Friday’s activities are at nearby Quail Lodge in Carmel Valley, where ‘The Quail – A Motorsports Gathering’ takes place; tickets for the event are in such high demand that they sell out online within hours. Here, the Credit Suisse team is on hand to show clients the finer points of some of the rare collectibles stylishly set out on the manicured lawns of Quail Lodge – with experts of the calibre of Alain de Cadenet on hand to explain the relative merits of pre-War Alfas, ‘Gullwing’ Mercedes or Porsches. He has, after all, owned or raced many of them.

Credit Suisse ‘by Invitation Only’ at the 2011 Pebble Beach weekend

And racing was very much the subject the following day, at the Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion at nearby Laguna Seca. Guests were treated to the amazing spectacle of a multi-Ferrari 250 GTO race, together with hard-driving Shelby Cobras, pre-War Alfa 8Cs, ex-Le Mans cars and much more, all battling for honours on the rolling track, set in the sandy woods just a few miles away from Monterey. With pit-row suite hospitality, and the always-present expert knowledge, Credit Suisse clients enjoyed their Saturday action at ‘the track’ in some style.

‘Style’, indeed, which brings us to Sunday, on the famous 18th Fairway by The Lodge at Pebble Beach. As a sponsor, Credit Suisse was once again able to give its guests an exclusive vantage of the show from its hospitality suite, along with behind-the-ropes access, and the inside line on precisely what makes a Best of Show.

Credit Suisse ‘by Invitation Only’ at the 2011 Pebble Beach weekend

For a few days mid-August, the whole collectors’ car world had congregated on the Monterey Peninsula. And, in the heart of it, providing the finest, most exclusive services every day for its clients was Credit Suisse, once again demonstrating a passion for the enduring, and a sense of tradition that is the international classic car scene.

Next stop the Goodwood Revival from 16-18 September, where Credit Suisse is an official partner of the event.

Further information on the Credit Suisse Classic Car Program can be found at: www.credit-suisse.com/classiccars

Unless otherwise specified, the term ‘Credit Suisse’ is the global marketing brand name for the investment banking, asset management and private banking services offered by Credit Suisse Group subsidiaries and affiliates worldwide. This document is not intended as an offer or solicitation of an offer to sell or to buy or subscribe for securities or other financial instruments or products.

Text: Classic Driver on behalf of Credit Suisse
Photos: Credit Suisse / Classic Driver / Cathy Dubuisson