Vintage cars gather at Beamish Museum for test of endurance

VINTAGE car fans revved up for their annual test of endurance across the North East's rural roads.

Vintage and Classic car rally at Beamish Open Air Museum
Vintage and Classic car rally at Beamish Open Air Museum

VINTAGE car fans revved up for their annual test of endurance across the North East's rural roads.

More than 100 drivers gathered at Beamish Museum, in County Durham, to begin their testing 150-mile route around County Durham and North Yorkshire.

Owners showcased their classic cars before setting-off on their journey’s for the 43rd Reliability Run.

The event, which has been running since 1970, involved vehicles stopping at 10 checkpoints, including one at Bowes Museum in Barnard Castle and the now familiar lunchtime hour-long stop on Bainbridge village green, in North Yorkshire.

The run began at 8.15am yesterday morning and was led by Richard Evans, director of Beamish Museum, who embraced the event in his Morris Commercial, a light van dating from 1933.

He was followed at one minute intervals by a procession of lovingly-preserved cars, jeeps and other vans, all dating from before 1956.

Several pre-1960 vintage motorcycles also followed at half-minute gaps.

Organiser George Jolley said most entrants were run regulars, but he was glad to see some new faces tackling the event for the first time.

He said: “Everything went really well. The weather has been reasonable and cooler in some places, which helps a lot of the old cars keep cool and keep going.

“It’s been a bumper day and there were about 148 cars in total. It’s excellent to see so many vintage cars in one place. It’s 150 testing miles.”

The run is traditionally staged on the third Sunday in June, Father’s Day, to ensure maximum daylight conditions.

Spectators gathered at the museum as drivers made their back to the events field to the finish line.

Visitors were also treat to a display of about 40 vehicles from the North East Club for Pre-War Austins.

Meanwhile, cars were not so well preserved at an event in Sunderland, where monster trucks were the king.

The Guinness World Record Holding Monster Truck LIL’ DEVIL, put on a display of car-crushing prowess at the Nissan Extreme Torque Show.

The main event of the one-day stunt and drift racing extravaganza saw 30 of Europe’s best drift cars battle it out to become the 2013 champion.

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