As the sales director for the Bugatti Automobiles of the Americas, John Hill considers himself the luckiest guy in the world. Part of his “job” involved driving the 2011 Veyron Grand Sport, the fastest street production car in the world, in the inaugural American Bugatti Club Rally, a two-day tour that started Friday and made a stop at Peconic Bay Winery in Cutchogue.
The Veyron is capable of reaching 253 miles per hour, has 16 cylinders, four turbo chargers and features an iPod connection and heated seats.
"I feel like the king of the world driving this car," Hill (above) said. "I've gone as fast as 200 miles per hour in this car. When it reaches about 137 miles per hour, the back wing comes up, which helps to make the car feel stable."
The event featured 20 Bugattis, most from the 1920s and 1930s. American Bugatti Club Rally hosts Jane Scott and her husband, Jeff Becker, of Southampton, were thrilled to showcase the coveted cars. The couple wanted to follow in the footsteps of fellow Bugatti Club member Peter Williamson, who died several years ago.
"He [Williamson] ran his rally in New Hampshire, and we wanted to keep it going out here on Long Island. My husband and I are Long Islanders and we wanted to show off the beauty of Long Island. We wanted the drivers get to see the beautiful places along the North Fork," Scott said. The drivers who participated in the rally came from all over the country and as far away as England and Australia.
One of the drivers, Tom Clifford, of Holliston, Mass., said he was delighted with the North Fork scenery.
"It's very impressive,” he said. “The homes out here are quite beautiful, and it's fun to drive these cars with everyone else."
James Silver, general manager for the Peconic Bay Winery, said he was honored to have the cars make a stop there.
"This is a terrific venue for an automobile display,” Silver said. “There is nothing on the planet like a Bugatti. They are the most beautiful cars in the world."