Classic Cars

Timeless Machines: Grand Prix Historique de Monaco

‘Racing is life’. Or is it more of a lifestyle? At the ‘Grand Prix Historique de Monaco’, these boundaries are blurred in the best possible constellation. This is precisely why the event is regarded as a season highlight for historic motorsport - both in sporting and visual terms.

  • Text & Photos
    Marko Knab • ramp.pictures

He who rests, rusts, they say. But the best way to avoid this is to keep moving. This applies to people as well as cars. Does it have to be one of the most challenging racetracks in the world for a joint workout? Quite clearly: ‘Yes!’ Otherwise, the 14th Grand Prix Historique de Monaco last weekend would have been just another event in the calendar of the historic motorsport scene. But it is not. It was the highlight - for fans and drivers alike. Why should you make the trip for the next edition in 2026? We give you five good reasons.

The ambience

Monaco is Monaco. Which actually says it all. But in a little more detail, it sounds like this: palm trees, pure luxury and that incomparable flair of the French-Italian Riviera, the ‘Art de Vivre’ that is cultivated here - there is simply no other place like the Principality. Then there is the legendary harbour, which is a sightseeing spot in its own right. Enriched by motorsport, this creates something very, very special.

The cars & the sound

The Grand Prix Historique is a giant time machine. In just three days, it takes you from the 1950s to the 1980s. It's these four decades that people talk about today with a clear conscience:

»When sex was safe and motor racing bloody dangerous.«
This is synonymous with a sensational engine sound that is reflected and amplified by the urban canyons. Ignited by the McLaren of James Hunt and the Ferrari of Niki Lauda - or other racing car legends.

Unique opportunities

Want to shake hands with Ayrton Senna's nephew Bruno Senna after driving his uncle's McLaren? No problem. Want to finally see Patrick Dempsey off the screen? If it's nothing else. An autograph from legendary racing car designer Adrian Newey, who himself drives in the Grand Prix - a matter of course. Nowhere else can you get closer to the stars and perhaps even meet one or two of your childhood idols. By the way, numerous auctions in the area also offer the chance to buy some very special vehicles if you have enough small change.

The racing & the approachability

There are show rides and demo laps in the programme. And some drivers who take a more Olympic approach - taking part is everything. But most drivers take the event very seriously. So much so that there is sometimes material wear and tear in the battle for positions. Or a major crash. If you never push the limit, you don't know where it is. Nelson Piquet described driving at Monaco as akin to “riding a bicycle around your living room” A very special highlight: the paddock on the edge of the harbour, where you can also talk to drivers and mechanics and take a close look at the cars.

The people

The cars, the atmosphere, the racing - it's all great. But the best thing is the people you meet here. We're not talking about the superstars here. We mean all the enthusiasts, mechanics and motivated team members. Anyone who comes here has a good reason for doing so - namely genuine passion. You can feel that. And that creates a particularly pleasant, relaxed and hospitable atmosphere.

Marko Knab

Marko Knab

Journalist & Photographer
Life writes the best stories - and Marko Knab tells them in text and picture form. His focus: people & their very own stories and cars, motorsports and travel stories. He already worked for Motorsport-Total.com while completing his Bachelor's degree in German Language, followed by a brief stint at a local daily newspaper and a Master's degree in literature and cultural theory - and ramp.

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