Tour De Cebu historic rally returns on Sept 29, 2022

Many may have missed the golden era of motorsports in the 60s and 70s, featuring some of the most iconic vehicle designs and some brands that are now just shadows of their former selves. However, it’s not too late to experience or witness it in the present day and on Philippine shores.

Once a year, the Tour de Cebu gathers some of the country’s most well-maintained classic sports cars for an epic road rally across the Visayan islands.

Last held in 2019, the Tour De Cebu is back has returned and hopes to continue the historic car rally it has come to be known as, spanning some 1,000 kilometers. The official announcement was made at the Manila Polo Club where some of the actual participating cars from Manila were also displayed.

The rally will be held from September 29 to October 3, 2022. The event is organized by the Performance and Classics Enthusiasts (PACE) of Cebu and the Manila Sports Car Club (MSCC). It highlights the beautiful roads and highways as well as the many scenic spots that the Visayan islands have to offer.

Inspired by Italy’s Mille Miglia (1,000 miles) event, the Tour de Cebu is a time-speed-distance (TSD) rally. Rather than racing to checkpoints at the fastest possible time, TSD rallies require participants to reach checkpoints at a pre-defined time. Typically, it requires driving within the speed limit, with penalty points given to those who arrive too early or late at the said checkpoints. The winner will be the team with the lowest penalty score. It may sound boring, but arriving at a pre-defined time is harder than driving flat out. It also gives cars with smaller engines equal footing against those with larger engines or more cylinders. In addition, it guarantees safety for the competitors, the priceless classic cars, and other road users.

From left: Michal Lhuillier, Chris Tio, and Kenneth Cobonpue.

The Tour de Cebu was conceptualized as a celebration of a decade of friendship among the members or PACE. The anniversary fun run entailed a drive through truly iconic roads and the sheer fun of the event is what turned it into the safe, picturesque, and unique event and driver for road tourism it has come to be known as today.

A Morgan 3-wheeler, one of the historic cars that will be participating in Tour de Cebu.

Though organized by two of the country’s most exclusive car clubs, the Tour de Cebu is open to all eager participants with sports cars manufactured in 1972 or earlier. Essentially, any vehicle that has historically participated in Mille Miglia is allowed. This means classic cars like Porsche 356, Alfa Romeo Giulia, Mercedes Benz SLs, Ferrari Dino 246s, and the like are allowed. However, even cars that did not participate in Mille Miglia but have sporting heritage like a Chevrolet Corvette (C2) 427 Stingray, Datsun 240Z, or even Morgan 3-wheeler are more than welcome.

Eligible sports cars are based on the official list compiled by the Manila Sports Car Club. However, PACE grants limited exceptions for classic cars that pose high historic value or unique provenance in the country as well as run-on sports car models, or cars that had their manufacturing periods extend beyond the 1972 cut-off date. Visit the Tour de Cebu Facebook page for more details.

Tour de Cebu is sponsored by Petron Blaze 100 Euro 6, Vintage Grail, BE Resort, NUSTAR Resort and Casino, FASTCAT, Johnny Air Cargo, 103.5 Retro Cebu, Nature Spring, Span Asia Carriers, ERUF, Cinco Automotive, Nice Day Carwash, and Toyota Team Cebu.