Spiders, aerobics, tandem and nursery.
a great time we had. Stina and me, Wille R from Sweden talked the
whole way driving back home through Holland and Germany about the
weekend in Limburg. It all started in April when I was chatting on
the Internet with Hans de Kok from the www.alfaspider.com
about a meeting for Roundtail Spiders.
Limburg was his choice and now I know why. We'll
be back next year, that's for sure.
With new engine oil and the -67 Roundtail spider
well tuned, we started through Denmark and passed on the brand new
Belt-bridge, one of the biggest in Europe. What a view, we could
almost see Amsterdam. Since the traffic in the Hamburg area is known
to be hard, we decided to spend the night in Elmshorn. After the
usual procedure with "Schnitzel Ziugeuner art" and some
beer, the next morning we took the ferry from Gluckstadt over the
Elbe, just ten minutes, and we were finally in Holland.
The welcome was terrible, heavy rain and thunder
near Groeningen made us stop under some trees. Well, you could have
a worse time than sitting in the spider with your 'spouse, listening
to good music by Duane Eddy and Jerry Lee Lewis from the tape
As always, things got better and we had a nice
drive on the small roads and passed Leuwarden, Afsluitsdijk and
stayed in Medemblick for the night. I had then noticed that the gas
tank had a minor leak. The problem was, that I was not able to find
any liquid gasket sealant to stop the leak. The smell was terrible
and everybody just stopped and started asking questions whenever the
bonnet was open or even worse, I was under the spider. The people
however were very polite and friendly, but the leak continued.
Friday morning we took the road to Lelystad and passed Harderwijk
and continued on the small and winding roads
through Putten, Ede, Nijmegen and had a good time. Stina and I
realised that we
would never make Limburg on time so we decided to take the motor-way
instead. Suddenly two spiders came along.
What a relief, Cobi and Jan with Dagmar and
Ingmar took us on the fast lane to Valkenburg. It was very fun to
drive in a convoy at a good speed. BTW, since Stina has her opinion
about speed, I had swapped the Jaeger speedometer for another one
which only shows a maximum speed of 120 kph, no matter what the rev.
counter will say. 4.800 rpm still is a nice 120 kph and so is 3.400
rpm. I'll never trade that speedometer.
What a show to see all the spiders and to
meet everybody. There were spiders everywhere and people from
various countries like Holland, Switzerland, France, Belgium,
Luxembourg, Sweden, UK, Germany and Italy of course. Nice to get a
badge with you name on. Then we didn't have to say "that tall
guy" or "the green spiderman", instead we all knew
who we were by name.
Very fortunate, most of the fellas handed over
the accommodation or other details to the females and then we opened
our bonnets and started to tell lies about our Alfa Romeo spiders.
Many interesting thoughts and ideas were penetrated and examined in
the parking lot. Time just flew away for Andreas Rottman, Jacqout
Christopbre and Klaus Mohr. There were also some nice IV-series
spiders, I noticed a black one owned by Christian Spaan, young
Alfista. His father Jan had a Kamm-tailed spider. Lots of Alfas in
that family too.
My tank was still leaking and everybody was most
interested. Nice welcome dinner and after some refill from the hotel
bar, we all had a good night sleep on Friday evening.
Saturday morning the rally started. Roni "Spiderman"
handed out the maps, very impressive in full color print and easy to
read. The Rallybook contained some questions and assignments and a
start list with every spider according to the start number with full
names and license plate numbers. Thanx.
We were supposed to drive and make some assignments which turned out
to be very instructive. Like everyone else, I followed the leader,
i.e. the car in front of you. In my case it was a black Giulia
Spider with a very nice Dutch couple. After a while I followed the
leader and ended in the parking lot. We had to pay to get out from
there and in the meantime we saw the other spiders passing one by
The rally was real fun even with a leaking tank
and Jan Groen's spider looks so nice in the rear mirror, especially
when overtaken! Everywhere we looked, there were Spiders all around.
Fabulous! I had my mind set on the tasks and had prepared myself
real good. I know how to tell the difference between the sound from
a 1300 Jr engine with NKG sparking plugs and a worn clutch release
bearing with Pirelli tyres from a 1750 engine with spin on filter
and ATE valves. I had even rechecked the movies "Police academy
no 14" and "Rocky VII". That's what we do way up
north. But I found it hard to find the border pole but managed
As I run the Alfa Romeo Roundtail Spider register on the web, I was
very happy to see so many Duettos and Veloces in such good shape. I
knew some of them from the Internet already but had never seen the
owners. Suddenly "Cobi.Groen@WXS.nl" and "firstname.lastname@example.org"
got a face and were something else than just a VIN or a chassi no. I
took lots of photos and I was so happy.
There were two absolutely immaculate Swiss white Duettos. They
looked even better than brand new and in fact, they were. Andreas
Rottman and Hans-Peter Krebs had done a marvellous job restoring
them. I decided to park my roundtail far away from them to avoid any
comparison. Some of us talked about pouring used engine oil over the
white cars to make ours look better, but we never did. They Swiss
were very nice people and of course Kodak must have made a fortune
since everybody was taking pictures.
There are more pictures in the Limburg
Andrea from Italy had a red Giulia GT with some engine noise. Jan
Groen took command and was very happy to have something to lay his
hands on, since Cobi was organising the event together with Jaques
and Roni. Nice work Jan, to get the Giulia quiet again and I know
that Andrea Piecarini will not have to do anything about that engine
for a while.
The organisation had arranged another assignment
too. Roni "Spiderman" asked some question about what Italy
was famous for. I was the only one who shouted "amore" but
that was wrong. It was tandem bicycles instead. We all had to ride
on the bike some 5 kilometres, that's what it felt like. Stina and I
had an interesting style on the bike, a mix of Michael
Williams in Sacramento, Eddie Merckx, King-Kong after the shower
and Quasiomodo break-dancing but managed. Afterwards we found out
that we had taken the long run, the rest of the gang only did 50???
Prices and food, glorious food, Alfisti
In the evening we had an absolute marvellous four-course dinner and
wine. Stina and I had made friends with Klaus and Hildegard from
Cologne and the evening went very fast, too fast. The Swiss Duettos
got awards too. First price was a lot of engine oil. Their Spider
did not consume any oil, as far as I could see. Perhaps the blue-oil
flame Spider that drove in front of me for a while would have better
use of the oil. Now I know that he who says "there is no smoke
without fire" has never been driving behind an Alfa with worn
I got a nice price too, a very big bottle of the Dutch Genever. That
was a good compensation for my leaking gas tank. The price was
however not for the cleanest Spider, but for the 1.500 km we had to
go to get to Valkenburg. Thanx a bunch.
That evening it started to rain, but what the
heck. Can you have a better time than together with other Alfisti,
good eating, lots of drinks and nice girls and Spiders. That was a
time to remember.
Another excellent breakfast and we were all ready to go. During
Saturday and Sunday there were some more Spiders arriving to take
part in the event. There was a Belgian 1750 Veloce -68 with French
license plates that had been in a museum in France for almost 25
years. Still original painting, never re-sprayed and with the engine
never opened. Congratulations to Luc Colemont, proud owner of this
beauty. Luc runs the Alfa
Finally, off we went in a long convoy, Cobi was
leading and Roni was taking care of the end. What a glorious sight
to be in the middle with Alfas as far as you could see, both ahead
and in the rear mirror.
The clouds were looking as way back in Scandinavia, i.e. rain ahead,
but nobody seemed to mind. That's when the aerobic exercises
started. The sky started to weep and almost everybody turned 45
degrees backwards, grabbed the hood and pulled it up.
Some Alfisti used umbrellas instead, I had never
thought of that. After a few minutes, the reverse operation, top
down. Moving again, shifting gears, revving and then again. Turn
your body back, grab the hood and lift. Away we went and then again,
top down. This operation went on for some time, but after a while
almost everybody had enough and the tops stayed down. That was the
Jane Fonda aerobic exercise Alfa Spider style. Some of us are not
used to twist our bodies that much and we still can feel it after a
week. Luc Colemont is here assisted by a Dutch Duetto owner with
In the meantime, Mieke and some other nice ladies
jumped out from the woods with a nice lunch bag and made my day. It
sure tasted fine. I think the local inhabitants were impressed by
us. I remember when they let us all pass. They had obviously no idea
that we were that many. The line of cars waiting was growing all the
time, but the didn't seem to mind. There can never be too many
Alfas, can there?
Finally, we got the Texas-style restaurant Arizona. The organisation
had a nice meal ready for us, spare-ribs. I liked that and even got
an extra plate. Stina got a nice glass and Brunette and I got Alfa
beer with a special designed glass. Roni and Jacques sure knew how
to get a party going. Very impressive.
Time to say goodbye and everybody was saying
"see you next year". I personally was getting kinda
sentimental. We had such a great time together and we will be back
again. Thanx a bunch.
Little Dagmar had an overhaul on a Spider and got new dipers. I
liked that, well done Cobi. What will become of little Dagmar, she's
already used to the Spider, just wait 'til she gets her driving
license. It is really good to see the Groen family driving in two
spiders with the kids belted in the seats and the top down. A real
Roni was very good when he escorted us to the
hotel and we all had a jolly good time that evening together with
the Alfisti from Luxembourg. It is always fun to tell lies about our
spiders and rims and how fast we go. Time went too fast as always
when you're in a good company. We all slept like logs that night.
There are a lot of photos in the
Thanx a bunch to Hans, Roni, Jaques and Cobi and
their families and all the rest who made this such a memorable
visit. See you all next year.
This site was produced by Wille
R. If you have any comments or questions, please send an E-mail.