Sure enough, it’s an eerie place. Thanks to the wonders of modern technology we were able to bring up videos of Moss, Fangio et al thundering past these once packed grandstands, which have lain dormant for far too long, as we wandered among them. You can still walk through many of them, climbing the steps to the top of the pit buildings, imagining the crowds and crews cheering on their heroes through this incredible setting.
But it remains silent today. With a pit-lane marked out to separate those wishing to visit the remaining structures from the rushing traffic. Into this still, the quiet Passat arrived, unphased by its near-thousand-mile journey of the last few hours. We, its occupants, were still relatively relaxed, despite an early start the long journey. Even with the rain the Passat’s excellent climate control and heated seats soon removed the damp from our near-dripping clothes.
Off we went for the rest of our journey, still marvelling at the sheer size of what remains at Reims, imagining being in those grandstands to watch the legends of yesteryear attack those roads muscling their state-of-the-art machines round while becoming increasingly hot, filthy and sweaty. Meanwhile, the Passat churned away the miles without any kind of sweat being broken, happily eating up the tarmac on its way to warmer climbs, touring its way through France in the grandest of styles.
MPG this week: 43.4.