Tourists choosing the post-peak season period to visit this vacation destination got something to write home about, thanks to a Vintage Car Rally which provided a touch of class to the ongoing Summer Festival here.

Organised on Monday by the Nilgiris Vintage and Classic Car Association, the rally thrilled a large number of persons including many tourists who lined the route from the Boat House in one end of the town to Breeks Open Air Stadium on the other to get a glimpse of the vehicles of yore.

Heavy traffic

The rally was flagged off by the Nilgiris Collector, Archana Patnaik.

The heavy traffic and crowded roads notwithstanding the procession of vehicles passed off without a hitch.

A common comment enroute and at the Breek's Stadium where the vehicles were displayed was: “the rally is getting better by the year.”

Pointing out that when the event was introduced about four years ago, the number of entries was only around 20 the organisers told The Hindu that it had steadily increased and this year it had featured 50 vehicles, including jeeps.

There were also a good number of old motorcycles and scooters.

Among the participants were members of the 17-year-old Vintage and Classic Vehicles Foundation of India.

Its founder- president Shankar Dev of Chennai said that such rallies not only keep alive the saying, “Old is Gold” but also underscore the need to accord the highest priority to heritage in all spheres.

He added that the conditions in Ooty are ideal for organising such events.

A participant Geetha Pillai who owns a 63-year-old Morris 8 said that more importance should be given to events like the Vintage Car Rally because they reflect the ethos of the Blue Mountains.

Another participant Sanjay Narayanan said, “I look forward to this event every year.”

Many tourists described it as a “rare opportunity.”

Among the vehicles which caught one's eye were a Vauxhall Wyvern, a Woolsley, a Morris Cowley, an Austin and a sleek black Plymouth belonging to the Defence Services Staff College.

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