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Motoring’s finest fellowships: The world’s most elite car clubs

PA Motoring logoPA Motoring 07/11/2018 Adam Weller
a group of people around a track: Ferrari XX © Ferrari Ferrari XX

For car enthusiasts, joining a club of like-minded individuals makes a lot of sense. You get to make new friends, take part in meet-ups and talk about your car without restraint – and there’s no risk of being left behind at the bar as a result.

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But some cars – and, indeed, some drivers – demand something special from their car clubs.

Here are eight of the greatest membership cards in motoring.

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Goodwood Road Racing Club

a group of people standing in front of a car © Provided by The Press Association (PA Motoring) While events such as the Breakfast Club meets are open to all, there are plenty of perks to being a member of the Goodwood Road Racing Club, aka the GRRC.

For one, there are several incentives built around the Festival of Speed and the Revival, plus there’s exclusive access to the season-opening Members’ Meeting, which sees cars from more recent times take to the famed Goodwood circuit.

There are also many exciting opportunities for visits to other motoring locales, as well as access to club track days and events.

Ascari Club

a view of a city with a mountain in the background © Provided by The Press Association (PA Motoring) Run by Dutch billionaire and championship-winning racing driver Klaas Zwart, the Ascari Race Resort is a bespoke complex of villas set in the heart of rural Malaga.

As an added extra, there’s even a fully fledged racing circuit in the back garden!

The layout is inspired by Zwart’s favourite circuits and built for the most powerful cars on the planet. The Dutchman owns a fleet of racing cars, some of which are available for members of the Ascari Club to drive.

Whether you want to drive something of your own in anger, borrow from the fleet or just soak in the sun, this resort ticks all the boxes.

Ferrari XX Programme

a car parked on the side of a road © Provided by The Press Association (PA Motoring) Part of the globe-trotting Corse Clienti tour, Ferrari’s XX Programme is the opportunity for the super-rich owners of the FXX, 599 XX and FXXK to take to numerous world-class Formula One-level circuits.

Ferrari looks after the fleet of track-only hypercars, and regularly implements updates, ensuring that its clients are treated to the very apex of performance.

Ferrari F1 Clienti

a red fire truck driving down a road © Provided by The Press Association (PA Motoring) Running alongside the XX Programme, the F1 Clienti scheme allows the world’s elite to buy Ferrari Formula One cars from across the decades.

Much like its sibling setup, the owners don’t have to worry about upkeep or preparation. They also receive the benefit of coaching from a variety of Ferrari-contracted professional racing drivers, who make sure they can handle their fire-breathing beasts.

Classic Car Club Manhattan

a car parked in front of a building © Provided by The Press Association (PA Motoring) Deep in the hustle and bustle of New York, you’ll find Classic Car Club Manhattan.

The location certainly plays up to the club element of its name, with a full food menu, happy hour sessions at the bar and even a racing simulator said to be the most sophisticated in the United States.

That’s not to say the fleet of cars available to members isn’t the main attraction, though. Among the modern supercar elite such as the Porsche 911 GT3 and the Aston Martin Vantage, you’ll also find classics such as the BMW M3 E30, the original Acura NSX and its younger sibling, a 1966 Ford GT40 in Gulf colours, as well as a Porsche 550 Spyder.

A 3,200 sq ft clubhouse overlooking the Hudson River is currently being built for members.

Pure McLaren

a car parked on the side of a road © Provided by The Press Association (PA Motoring) Serving as McLaren’s answer to the Ferrari Corse Clienti package, Pure McLaren is an opportunity for owners to drive their cars in anger on leading race circuits.

As well as track sessions for road cars and track monsters like the P1 GTR, the Pure events also host the McLaren-GT Series, which sees drivers go head to head in identical McLaren 570S GT4s.

The Pure McLaren package is good for those who don’t want dented egos. Unlike the Ferrari equivalent, the public aren’t granted entry when McLaren is in town.

106 Drivers Club

a car parked in a parking lot © Provided by The Press Association (PA Motoring) Before there was Pure McLaren, there was the McLaren F1 Owners’ Club, operated and founded by racer Ray Bellm, who achieved much of his success behind the wheel of an F1 GTR.

In an accidental homage to a small Peugeot, the collective has now been rebranded the 106 Drivers Club, signifying the number of F1 road cars produced and the expected production number of the upcoming Speedtail.

With the rebranding, the club has opened itself up to McLaren’s modern Super Series line-up and often organises continental tours for its members.

Global Endurance Legends

a car parked in the grass © Provided by The Press Association (PA Motoring) The Global Endurance Legends package is run by classic car specialist Jarrah Venables, catering for owners of Le Mans cars from the ’90s through to the early 2010s.

The club visits tracks such as Le Mans and Spa and is often at capacity, with the number of cars exceeding 60 on some occasions.

With numerous owners of historic racing cars not wanting to take part in proper races, the non-racing format operated by Global Endurance Legends suits many. As such, the events often see some of the most valuable, significant cars of the era joining the fray rather than sitting dormant in private collections.

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