The Rake visits Dubai’s Gulf Historic GP
Racing through time with The Rake, a journey into the heart of Dubai's nostalgic Motorsport Gala.
Dubai, UAE. Still exhausted from our overnight flight, myself and Brandon Hinton, Creative Director of The Rake, jumped in a cool, air conditioned taxi and told our driver to journey South. Our destination was the Dubai Autodrome, a race track nestled in the Arabian desert and away from the glittering and futuristic landscape of the city.
Roaring V8’s prickled my ears as we approached our destination and I wound my window down to take in the sounds that pierced the hot and humid air. We collected our press passes, and beyond the gates were greeted by the scent of petrol and the melodies of engines long past. The Gulf Historic is no ordinary car show; it’s a celebration of automative nostalgia. An ode to the golden age of motoring and surrounding us were its masterpieces. The sultry curves of a Ferrari 250 GTB, a meticulously preserved mint green 1972 Porsche 911 Targa and my personal favourite, a cherry red Ford GT40 with white racing stripes. Each vehicle, meticulously restored to its former glory, stood as a testament to the passion of the collectors and the enduring allure of craftsmanship.
At around midday, the track was graced with presence of past F1 icons such as Alain Prost’s Marlboro red Ferrari 643 and the Brabham BT60 that had given Damon Hill his start in racing, for the first of the days qualifiers; the F1 90’s race. I stood as close to track as the marshals would allow and watched as these marvels of engineering raced around in the desert heat. The deafening and thunderous sound of their naturally aspirated V12’s vibrating painfully against my ear drums and I wished, along with everyone else there, that F1 cars still sounded like that today.
We made our way back to the media tent to send footage over to our man in London to upload to The Rake’s socials and used the opportunity to cool ourselves in the respite provided by tents A/C. Our body temperatures returned to an acceptable level and we stepped out into the heat once again and sauntered around the venue awaiting its climatic event; the Le Mans 60’s race.
The cacophony of vintage engines soon fired up and the roar of a navy blue E-type Jaguar, the purr of a meticulously preserved Porsche 911 and the angry growl of a Ford GT40 gathered the attendees for the qualifiers. The sun dipped below the horizon and cast a cinematic amber glow over the vintage chrome and polished leather as these automotive masterpieces bombed it down the straights, serenading us with a symphony of V8’s.
The sun had set and it was time to call an end to our day. Jet lag and excitement had finally caught up wit us. In the taxi back to our hotel, I wore tired smile on my face. Blessed as a life long petrol head to have witnessed the events of the day and thankful to the organisers of the Gulf Historic. An event that was not just a car show, but a testament to the unbridled passion and eccentricity that fuels the world of vintage racing.