The Best of the Best award goes to the collector car chosen from the winners of the world's most prestigious Concours from the previous year.
The 2021 title goes to Brian Ross' beautiful 1956 Ferrari 250 GT Berlinetta Competizione.
The car competed in the Mille Miglia and the Tour de France.
You can just imagine a room full of wealthy car guys all sitting around arguing about which of the great Concours winners that year was really the greatest. That may or may not have been the impetus for the Peninsula Classics’ Best of the Best Award: take the winners of the world’s most prestigious Concours from the previous year and from that rarified content pick just one, The Best of the Best.
The Concours are, indeed, pretty impressive: Villa d'Este, Pebble Beach, Cavallino Classic, The Quail, The Amelia, Hampton Court Palace, and Goodwood. To win any one of those would be enough to retire, rest on your laurels, and start every conversation from that day forward with, “Yeah, well when I won Best of Show at…” This award goes beyond even such distinction, even though few people outside an elite group of collectors know about it.
The Best of the Best award for 2021 goes to a truly beautiful 1956 Ferrari 250 GT Berlinetta Competizione owned by collector Brian Ross. His Ferrari beat out: a 1957 Ferrari 250 GT Berlinetta Tour de France, a 1974 Lancia Stratos HF Stradale, and three variants of the 1938 Mercedes-Benz 540 K.
Other nominees were a 1926 Hispano Suiza H6B Cabriolet and a 1934 Avions Voisin Type C27 Aerosport Coupe. Any one of those could have garnered the honor of Best of the Best after judging by a distinguished panel that included everyone from car designer Fabio Filippini, the Chief Creative Officer for Genesis Design and Brand Luc Donckerwolke, Pink Floyd drummer Nick Mason, previous Chief Designer for General Motors and Senior Designer for Porsche AG Ken Okuyama, fashion designer Ralph Lauren, Ford Motor Company Board of Directors member Henry Ford III, former Design Director for Rolls-Royce Motor Cars Ian Cameron, comedian and television host Jay Leno, and others. Among the “others,” we are told, is Concours d’LeMons founder Alan Galbraith. Still awaiting confirmation on that.
The car itself has a long and distinguished history. One of nine 250 GT Berlinetta Competiziones ever built, the 1956 Ferrari raced in the Mille Miglia, the 1959 Tour de France and several hill climbs. During its racing career, it was modernized by Carrozzeria Scaglietti and fitted with the first prototype of Ferrari’s 12B V12 engine.
After its competition days were done it was sold to Danish collector Claus Ahlefeld, then to Pebble winners Sam and Emily Mann, then to current owner Brian Ross.
“Winning the Best of the Best Award is a great achievement and a true honor,” said Ross. “It is a magnificent recognition of the multiple years spent trying to get my hands on this 250 GT and the hard work that went into the years-long restoration process. All of the other nominees have fantastic vehicles so I am incredibly humbled to be selected by the acclaimed judges for this award. Winning Best of the Best is a true dream."