The Scottsdale auctions are a bit like the Superbowl: the US audience wets themselves with excitement and the rest of the world looks on, slightly bemused. For us Brits, a classic car auction is often a rather stately affair: a man with a posh accent and a tweed jacket takes the bids, and after a while the gavel comes down. If there has been a particularly excessive bid, a surprised murmur may spread around the hall.
Scottsdale isn't like this at all. Imagine that the NEC double-booked, and that WWE somehow got all mixed up with the classic car show. Bright lights, TV cameras, shouty people everywhere... now you're getting close.
Then take a look at the figures: last week, a total of 3,486 classic vehicles were sold, with a combined value of $259.8m (£208m). Some absolutely phenomenal prices were achieved: the 1963 Jaguar E-Type Lightweight pictured above, one of the 12 originals, sold for $7.37m (£5.9m) and a 1939 Mercedes-Benz 540K Special Roadster changed hands for $6.6m (£5.27m).
So the US market is buoyant, right? Well- yes, Looking at the Scottsdale results, it looks pretty healthy. The only area of the market that saw a fall from 2016 was the $250,000 to $1m bracket, down 12%. Everywhere else, the figures were up.
But that's there, and we're here- will this uplift continue on our side of the Atlantic? In a few weeks I'll be at Retromobile in Paris, traditionally the event that sets the tone for the European market. This will give us market watchers our first glimpse of the emerging trends for 2017; I can't wait.
All figures and pictures were kindly supplied by Hagerty Classic Car Insurance. www.hagertyinsurance.co.uk/Classic-Car-Insurance/Car-Insurance-Overview