For the first time, Motor Presse Stuttgart is organizing a classic car rally in Luxembourg. It is the fourth after Paul Pietsch, Silvretta and Sachsen Classic. A team in a red Alfa Romeo won. Even Walter Röhrl was surprised by the routes.
The Luxembourg Classic got off to a perfect start: the new Classic Rally in the Grand Duchy inspired the 108 teams and thus a total of over 200 participants. A surprising number of people got to know the small European country for the first time thanks to the rally: "The landscape is varied and even has mountainous areas," says Michael Pitsch from Hamburg, describing his impressions.
The enthusiasm motivates him and his co-driver Malte Klarczyk to do their best. The North Germans win the 1st Luxembourg Classic in a 1960 Alfa Romeo Giulietta Spider. "In the end, it always takes a bit of luck," says Michael Pitsch modestly. He affectionately calls his Giulietta "my red affair". His love for this Italian spider has lasted for a good twelve years. "It is above all the shape of the body that excites me so much about the car," says the tall man from Hamburg.
Premiere for the vintage car rally
The bright red of his open two-seater fits perfectly with the auto motor und sport logo. The magazine celebrates its 75th anniversary at the Luxembourg Classic. The route with many winding passages in an impressive landscape is reminiscent of routes in the Black Forest, the home of founding publisher Paul Pietsch. He would certainly have liked the Luxembourg Classic. Especially since the Bugatti 35 Grand Prix de Lyon was a racing sports car that led the field, with which he began his racing career in 1931.
Goy Feltes is at the wheel of an early example of this successful series. With his jockey figure, the classic car collector is perfect for the narrow cockpit of the two-seater from 1924. Almost everyone in his homeland knows the Luxembourger: the jovial Bugatti pilot used to be chief pilot for the airline Luxair. Despite the drizzle at the beginning of the second day, he didn't let it spoil his mood in the open car. With the typical sound of the Bugatti eight-cylinder, the regularity test on the Goodyear test track in Colmar-Berg.
Walter Röhrl in the 911 Clubsport
But the weather changes soon: The Moselle region in the border triangle of Luxembourg, Germany and France welcomed the teams with bright sunshine, so that they can enjoy the route through the vineyards and along the picturesque border river could. When fulfilling countless requests for autographs during the lunch stop at the 100-year-old winegrowers' cooperative Domaines Vinsmoselle, Walter Röhrl says: "You think Luxembourg is just such a small country. But the roads here are great and there is hardly any traffic. These routes are predestined for rally driving."
The two-time world rally champion is driving a rarity from the Porsche Museum. It is a pre-series car of the 911 Carrera 3.2 Clubsport, a lightweight version of the 911 that has only been manufactured 189 times since 1987. Walter Röhrl is on the road together with his co-driver Christian Geistdörfer. On the snow-white body The logos of 75 years of auto motor und sport shine on her 911: "Even as a child I leafed through my older brother's notebooks," remembers Walter Röhrl.
Luxembourg is like a second home for what is probably Germany's most popular driver. "Here there is the only Walter Röhrl fan club in the world", he notes. That explains why he is given a particularly warm welcome here together with Christian Geistdörfer.
Destination at the Palais Grand Ducal
On a tour through Luxembourg, a detour is allowed Don't miss Schengen.The small town in the border triangle is famous for the agreement named after it.After a small loop through France, it leads rt the way back to Luxembourg. At the finish line, the Grand Duchy does the honors and opens the square in front of the Palais Grand Ducal, the city residence of the Grand Ducal family with a magnificent Renaissance façade. After around 460 kilometers, Deputy Prime Minister Francois Bausch welcomes the teams.
When passing the minister, the overall winners Michael Pitsch and Malte Klarczyk probably already suspect that their long way from the Hanseatic city with the "red affair" can lead them to the top. But all participants take the special experience of the 1st Luxembourg Classic home with them. The premiere with the discovery of a beautiful European country will certainly be remembered for a long time.
Walter Röhrl has probably covered as many kilometers in his car in his life as all the participants combined. He knows many roads around the world. Even he was surprised and enthusiastic about the great route, the landscape and the buildings. Can there be any greater praise? He said what many participants thought: the small neighboring country in the EU showed itself from its best side on these two days. With the premiere of the Luxembourg Classic, the Grand Duchy established itself as a constant in the classic car scene.