The legendary Ace Cafe’s themed evenings continue right throughout the year, but for understandable reasons, attendance diminishes more than somewhat in the cold and dark winter months. With the clocks now adjusted for British Summer Time, and the promise of daylight until around 8pm, there was much to look forward to from my first visit to Ace in 2012, for Italian Night. Although the weather seemed to throw everything (in the case of the hail stones, quite literally) at us for random periods of time during the day, it did stay dry all evening, allowing full appreciation of the cars and bikes that turned up. A combination of unpredictable weather and Easter/School holidays probably did deter or preclude some from attending, as the main car park area never got completely full, and it was probably 7pm before the majority of people arrived. However, patience was rewarded with variety and some rare and unusual cars.
As usual, Abarth dominated, with a strong presence from the Abarthisti. Many of the regulars were joined by a couple of new owners and yet one more well known face from distant parts managed to fit in a visit (albeit sans her own car) thanks to work taking her to London. This was the first time I was able to see Oli’s green wheels which occasioned much comment when he got them….. draw your own conclusions!
There was a sizeable gathering of Italian bikes as well. Star attraction was this brand new Ducati 1199 Panigale S Tricolore. The proud owner had collected it in Manchester that day, and because of the weather had actually trailered it down, so had only ridden 12 miles on it. I do have to point out that this is a £25,000 machine!