Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Arosa Classic Car 2009 - one of the most challenging hillclimbs

Four days of exciting cars to watch, four days of challenging hillclimbing, what an event, the 2009 Arosa Classic Car.

Impressive cars
Again, and similar to the years before (this was the fifth Arosa hillclimb already) a number of impressive cars have been pulled together. I really appreciated the Alfa-Romeo 8C (brought by Vögele, see picture below), the A.S.A with Ford Falcon engine (piloted by Stefan Vitelli, see picture below), the two Lancia Stratos (see picture below), the Lancia 037 Rally Stradale (see picture below), the Grand Prix Maserati (piloted again by George Kaufmann, until he had a transmission failure), the Lotus 23 (Hayoz), the ex Graham Hill Lotus Cortina (driven by Klaus Wildbolz) vintage cars like the Lagonda Rapier, American-La France, MG K3 and MG K1 monoposto, powerful AC Cobras and Ford Mustangs, as well as the really fast Ford Escort Rallye car. There are too many to mention. The full starter list is here. People also seemed to like the JWF Milano GT a lot with its slick design and impressive noise. Pictures of the cars and the event have been posted by the official photographer here.

A challenging Race Track
It's probably quite unique in Europe, a 7.8 km long hill climb. climbing 1'800 m up (and partially down) with 78 curves. The fastest cars (actually the Ford Escort RS Rallye car was the fastest) master this track in 4:30 minutes, resulting in an average speed of roughly 105 km/h. Cars like the JWF Milano GT still do it with an average speed of 85 km/h. From a driver's perspective there's not much else than an endless series of curves and hairpins. Even after having done it six times you still can't remember the full track. To get an impression on how it's like to master this 7.8 km track, have a look at the onboard video posted here.

People and location
Classic car events are not just a series of races, but also a social gathering of people loving cars. So a lot of the time is spent in either watching cars passing by, drivers preparing for start, fixing problems or just talking to each other and hear news and interesting stories.

Efficient organization

Compared to last year the organization improved a lot and it can only be said that it worked out with almost perfect Swiss precision. Few delays happened, few smaller accidents and food/drinks were extremely well organized. Also the track was very well prepared and for the type of track quite safe. So, the organizers really did a good job. Congratulation!


John L said...

Wow! Love the Alfa! (Can't help myself). Neat little Milano too of course.

Bruno von Rotz said...

one of my favorites is the (red) A.S.A, such a nice alluminium body!

John L said...

I'm not familiar with the A.S.A. but it looks nice. To show my own bias, I've got to say the Pantera would be good to see (and hear). And I like the Itala as well (used to have a 1922 Itala when I was very young, it was very slow though despite being red).