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May 9th 2007

Photos and story by Hugh Doran

The arrival of spring here in the UK means one thing for car lovers: an undeniable urge to get that treasured classic out and give it a run. For Alfa fans there is the added bonus of Spring Alfa Day, the traditional opening to the Alfa Romeo Owners Club year.

The club’s policy has always been to hold the event somewhere where there is an additional attraction other than Alfa Romeos. Thus April 15th saw a myriad of Alfas heading deep into the Buckinghamshire country side to the small village of Quanton and the Buckinghamshire Railway Centre. The venue itself is a mecca for those who interested in the golden age of steam locomotives. This is not just a museum - it’s a working museum with steam trains offering passenger rides.

Here, there are locomotives being restored to their former glory. And not just British trains either, some of the exhibits had come from as far away as Egypt and South Africa. The choice of venue wasn’t as random as it first seems as Alfa historians will remember that Nicola Romeo came from a railroad background and Alfa did produce the odd train back in the early days.

One of the star cars at the event way the very latest Spider. With the first right hand drive versions only making these shores a matter of weeks before the event, this was the first time that many club member had had the opportunity to set eyes on Alfa’s new baby. And thanks to the local dealer, Perrys of Aylesbury, bringing along a couple of examples there was a long line of prospective customers waiting to sit in the new model.

Perrys also brought along the latest small car from Lancia, the Epsilon. The car, like the rest of the Lancia range, is not currently available in the UK. But it is a car that Lancia hopes will do well when the marque returns to the UK market next year. But being parked a few meters from the new Alfa Spider meant that on this occasion it was pretty much ignored, which was a shame.

As for the Alfa’s that were parked and enjoying the unseasonably hot sunshine the star turn was taken by Robbie Webb’s 1900 coupe, the only example in the club and probably the only example in the country. This is one car that is always immaculately turned out and it was no surprise that its owner went home with the award for best car.

At Spring Alfa Day there is no attempt to park cars by model, which is no bad thing, thus it was possible to find the odd Junior Z mixed in with 156s and Breras. There was also a 164 Cloverleaf, now sadly becoming increasingly rare on this island, to be found between the Ice Cream van and the Hog Roast - both of which did brisk business.

SZs are always guaranteed to draw a crowd and a number were in attendance, plus there was an RZ for those who like wind in the hair motoring. Montreal fans were not to be disappointed either as there were a couple of fine examples in attendance. There was also a “barn” Monte that had been dragged out of said barn the day before. And although it was looked complete and in fairly good condition the motor hadn’t been run for a good 10-15 years! And of course no Alfa event would be complete without a splattering of Bertone coupes Giulia Supers and a host of spiders.

The non-Alfa parking area was just as interesting with a selection of Fiat’s from the Fiat Motor Club including an X1-9, a 127 Palio and now almost extinct (in the UK anyway) Ritmo. These were joined by a Maserati Biturbo Spider and Lancia Stratos replica. Also invited to the event were the Aprillia Club who had a number of members in attendance with their bikes.

Car of the day, Alfa 1900 - a well deserved winner.

The hot weather brought out the Spiders such as this Giulietta and Series 4.

The elegant lines of the 155 along side a 147 and 145.

After 19 years the 164 still looks good - especially in Cloverleaf form.

An Alfa event wouldn’t be the same with out the 105 series coupes.

The Brera, another Alfa legend.

Giuletta and Giulia Super, still great cars and still loved by Alfisti.

Few Alfa 90’s survive in the UK - this must be the best example left.

Coupes old and not so old...Giulia SS, GTV and SZ.

The 33 Sportwagen is still much in demand, hoving just as much space inside as the newer 156 Sportwagen.

The New Spider looks good from any angle. Alfa really have got it right this time.

The Alfa GT is stunning, yet at the same time understated.

The Sud Ti was the original front wheel drive Alfa pocket rocket. The 147GTA follows the trend and then takes thing to a whole new level when you light the blue touch paper.

Fiat X1-9 and Lancia Stratos (replica)..two other Italian automative legends.

The 127 Palio, once so common, now so rare. The Fiat Panda sitting in the background took over where the 127 left off.

The venue for Spring Alfa Day is a working museum for those that love the golden age of steam.

Past Issues



Shell Historics at Moroso

CCCA Tour Part I

Classic Adelaide 2007

Mugello 2007 Part 2

Malta Vintage GP

Mugello 2007

This is Hershey

Coppa d'Oro 2007

Pebble Beach Tour

Carmel Concours

Oldtimer sideshows at the Ring

35th Oldtimer GP Nurburgring

Ferrari Concours in Maranello

Sestriere Rally 2007

Turin Concorso

Ferrari Days GB

Greenwich Concours

Mille Miglia 2007

Italian bikes at Half Moon Bay

Shell Historics at VIR

Italian Auto Moto Festival

Alfa Day GB

California Mille

Villa d'Este 2007 part II

Villa d'Este 2007 part I

Shell Historics at Infineon

Geneva take Two

Geneva take One

Paris Pot Pourri

Retro Italia 2007

Paris and Retro 2007

Cavallino 2007

Shell Historics, Moroso 2007

Detroit 2007


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