WORDS: ELLIOTT HUGHES | PHOTOS: BONHAMS
Bonhams auction house has signed a partnership agreement with Formula 1 to become the official auction partner of the series’ Paddock Club with immediate effect.
The partnership was announced on November 21, 2022, and will see Bonhams hold sales at select Grands Prix from 2023 onwards. It has already been confirmed that Bonhams will host a season-ending sale of cars and luxury items at the 2023 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix on November 24-26, in what is also the company’s inaugural auction in the Middle East.
Bonhams’ Abu Dhabi Grand Prix sale will be held on the starting grid of the Yas Marina Circuit on the evening before the race, with the auction rostrum and cars showcased in front of the trackside grandstands.
Further sales will be announced in due course as the two brands look to develop their collaboration further.
The selection of Bonhams as Formula 1’s official auction partner is apt, because the auction house has previously sold several significant F1 cars including the ex-Fangio 1954 Mercedes-Benz W196 that crossed the block in 2013 at the Goodwood Festival of Speed.
Fangio’s W196 achieved a remarkable £19.6m ($29.6m), making it the most valuable F1 car ever sold at auction – a record it still holds almost ten years later.
More recent challengers consigned through Bonhams include the 1993 McLaren MP4/8A driven to victory at the Monaco Grand Prix by Ayrton Senna, and ‘Red Five’, the championship-winning Williams FW14B driven by Nigel Mansell in 1992.
“Formula 1 is the greatest racing spectacle on Earth, and we are delighted to become its official auction partner. Sharing Bonhams’ unrivalled passion for cars on the biggest stage possible is a tantalising prospect,” said Bonhams Collector Cars managing director Maarten ten Holder.
Brandon Snow, managing director of Formula 1, added: “Everyone at Formula 1, along with our global community of fans, has a strong passion for cars, old and new. The Bonhams name stands for heritage and history, which makes it the perfect auction partner for our Paddock Club platform, with the sales highlighting the beauty of classic cars alongside the world’s most technologically advanced machinery.”
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