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14 May 2017

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Ride-Out to Chelsea Autolegends 27/06/2011


Two-wheel hero Phil Read leads AutoLegends motorcycle cavalcade

 Sunday 4th September

Depart Ace Cafe 10.45am


Calling all riders: Britain’s eight times World Motorcycle Champion, Phil Read MBE, needs your help.

 Read, multi-champion in 125cc, 250cc, 500cc and 750cc classes in the 1960s and ’70s, is masterminding a cavalcade of classic motorbikes between two iconic London landmarks – the Ace Cafe on the North Circular Road and the rather more stately surroundings of the Royal Hospital, Chelsea, home of the Chelsea Pensioners.
The run is part of Chelsea AutoLegends, a celebration of motoring and motor racing on two and four wheels. Dubbed London’s greatest show on wheels, it is to be held on Sunday, September 4.

 “As well as being a great opportunity for the biking fraternity to gather together and swap stories over a great breakfast at the Ace before heading out on our bikes, the run will be an opportunity for us all to humbly salute the brave and noble soldiers who fought for our freedom,” said Read, who in 2002 was awarded ‘Legend’ status by the FIM, the worldwide governing body of motorcycle racing.

 The idea is for motorcyclists – especially those with classic or interesting machines – to meet at the Ace Cafe for breakfast on the Sunday morning from about 9.30. Ace MD Mark Wilsmore will launch the ride-out from 10.45 and the run itself will be headed by Read and members of the Royal British Legion Riders Branch (RBLRB).

 “As its name suggests, the RBLRB is predominately an association of ex-military riders and their involvement is perfect given where we will be riding to,” added Read.

 Once at the Royal Hospital, riders will be able to use a dedicated parking zone within the show. Bike parking tickets (£10) and admission tickets are available now from the event website at or from the ticket hotline on 0844 581 0760.

 Read won’t be the only motorsport personality at the event. He will be joined by Sir Stirling Moss, OBE, who is Patron of Chelsea AutoLegends, with other great names to be announced over the coming weeks.

 But the cars and bikes will be the real stars. More than 30 classic Le Mans racers will be on display alongside countless other important historic machines. There’ll be displays of the brutal Group B rally cars of the 1980s, classic motorcycles and the ten most significant road cars of all times as well as 50th birthday celebrations for the two most iconic British cars of the 1960s, the E-type Jaguar and the Mini-Cooper.

 There will be a supercar cavalcade to rival the Ace bikers, other themed displays including one by Ace Cafe London and a special tribute to some of the British ‘Patrons’, the private race team entrants of the Fifties and Sixties, who took on the factory teams… and often won.

 Eric Verdon-Roe, chairman of Chelsea AutoLegends, said: “With support from the RBLRB, Ace Cafe London and, of course, Phil Read we are confident that the ride-out could be one of the largest gatherings of two-wheeled machines this side of the TT! It should be a real spectacle.”

 Last year’s inaugural event attracted more than 6,000 visitors, all of whom were bowled over by the cars, the garden party atmosphere and the setting. For 2011, the aim is to double that number and raise even more money for the Chelsea Pensioners.

 Tickets for this year’s Chelsea AutoLegends are now on sale either via the event’s new website ( or from the ticket hotline on 0844 581 0760. Those pre-booking can take advantage of considerable savings with adult tickets priced at £15 in advance rather than £20 on the gate. Underlining the event’s family entertainment values, accompanied children aged under 12 will be admitted free of charge. 

 Chelsea AutoLegends – patron Sir Stirling Moss – is staged on the South Grounds of the Royal Hospital, Chelsea, on Sunday 4 September 2011. This year’s Chelsea AutoLegends builds on the huge success of last year’s inaugural show and once again will centre around a display of iconic cars that have contested the Le Mans 24 Hours, the world’s most famous motor race.

 Adding to the celebrations there will be a special focus on the much-loved cars of the Swinging Sixties – a decade when Chelsea’s groovy Kings Road was the hub of global fashion, design and pop music. Chelsea AutoLegends also raises funds for Chelsea Pensioners, residents of the Royal Hospital.