During the third September weekend, the anual Boxer-meeting of the German Alfaclub e.V. took place in Disternich near Düren (in the region of Colone). As you can read in the following lines, the "Sektion Köln-Bonn-Aachen" of the Alfaclub had managed to plan a quite interesting meeting. It all started Friday the 14th when the first participants arrived at the Disternich "Bürgerhalle" (citizen's hall). From there the participants went to the monthly Alfaclub members-meeting in a Pizzeria called "Pinocchio" in Zülpich. At about 23:00 o'clock the last participants for that arrived - from the UK! John Russel and his friend Mathew came with John's series II Alfasud ti 1.5. After a long travel they had finally made it. The restauration of John's Alfasud ti had just been finished for three days. Many Alfisti still sat in the Pizzeria with a Grappa or bear in their hands when the next day already had arrived. The next morning - Saturday - the rest of the paricipants arrived at the Bürgerhalle of Disternich. After we had "checked in", we received a tourbook and a surprise present (a T-shirt). At about 11 o'clock the first crews started witht their cars on the round trip through the rainy Eifel. The tourbook with chinese marks showed the way. But the tourbook did not only show they way. To be succesful you also had to answer some Alfa Romeo related questions Rose Knab had integrated in to the tourbook. E.g. "Mercedes has his name from a little girl. Alfa also has something like that. Which car by Alfa has the name from whose daughter?" It was of course the Giulietta, which got its name from one of Nicola Romeo's daughters. Having started in Disternich we first drove to Burg Nideggen (Burg means castle) where we had to find out what kind of beings live in this castle. From there the tourbook guided us through Heimbach and on curvy little raods uphill to Kloster Mariawald (Kloster = abby) (which was founded in 1480) where we again had to answer a question. Although the weather was quite bad - which meant slippery roads - we started to feel "sheer driving pleasure". A challenge for the good suspensions of the Boxer-Alfas! After we had noted down the answer in the tourbook we drove in direction of Gemünd and Schleiden. On the way we passed the highest layn moated castle in the Eifel. The next task waited in Reifferscheid, where we should count the steps of the donjon of Burg Reifferscheid. Fortunately the donjon was closed. So we did not had to stay in Reifferscheid for more than a few minutes - it was raining again. From Reifferscheid we went to the next castle, the Wildenburg whose house number we should search. Many crews stopped there for lunch in one of the more or less romantic restaurants around the castle. Driving an Alfa does not only make great pleasure - it also makes hungry and thirsty. After everybody was fully, the crews continued their trip on very curvy little roads. Now we had to find a certain door in the abbey yard of Kloster Steinfeld. The abbey which was built between 1069 and 1073 far away from civilisation is a cultural centre of the Northern Eifel. You could notice it at the large number of tourists which visited the abbey although the weather was not very inviting. Then we drove in northeast-direction towards the little village Weyer and its Kakushöhlen (Höhle means cave) where we had to count the holes in the cave-walls - with quite different results. At least the rain had stopped. Passing Eisfrey we drove to the village of Vussem where we had to count the curves of a roman aqueduct. The next stop was made at the Katzensteine ("catstones") in Katzvey which were used by stone age men as a shelter. The romans then used it as quarry. Meanwhile the afternoon was had passed and the the round trip through the Eifel came to its end. But Rose Knab still had still included one unsolved and difficult question in the tourbook. There was an excerpt of a famous novel where the narrator discribed a pre-war Alfa Romeo. The solution: It was the novel Via Mala where one of the protagonists drives a supercharged Alfa Romeo 6C 1750 GTC. Returning from the trip, the participants still had to show their driver's experience in front of the Disternich citizen's hall. In a distance of 100 m, the co-pilot had to arrange to flower-pots on the parking lot so that the car still could pass them without hitting the pots. Enriched with a few kilometres more on their tachometres, the Alfas could now make a break while the crews tried to warm themselves up with a coffee or tea. Many thanks to all the helping hands who had already prepared the hot drinks! Being not very warm outside, the participants were happy to stay in the citizen's hall for the evening. Unfortunately, the bad weather and the somtimes very slippery roads became a problem for the driver of a yellow Sprint 1.3. The car went out of control in a curve (although the driver had slowed down) and the rear of the car slipped into the ditch. Then it rolled over on its roof in slow motion. As a result, both A-pillars were bended, the windscreen and both windows of the passenger-door bursted, the right mirror broke and the body got some ugly dents. What a luck that the crew could escape without being hurt. With the help of other crews, they manged to put the car back on the wheels and drove it to Disternich. Being tightened with a lot of film, the Sprint was driven to Reiner Köppen on Sunday were it was quickly repaired at the same day. And - what a mess - after the trip had ended and all crews were returned to Disternich, the sun showed. At least, we now had the chance to make good photos of all Alfa 33s, Alfasuds and Alfasud Sprints. After a rich dinner, the programm which was planned for the evening started in the nicely decorated Bürgerhalle. Besides the oldest Alfasud, a red 1972 version which is in the property of Charly Ludwig and a freshly restored early Alfasud Sprint (also in red) were displayed in the Bürgerhalle. The walls and the ceiling of the Bürgerhalle were decorated with banners of the Trofeo Alfasud and with banners baring promotion paroles as "Alle Achtung, Arna!", "Alfa 33 - La Linea" etc. Now the time of awarding the three most succesful crews who had managed to get the most points for their tourbook received a goblet each. Then, Rudy Bilterests Alfasud Sprint 1.5 Veloce trofeo was awarded best Alfa of the meeting and John Russel and his friend also got a gobblet for the longest way - they came from the UK. Together with the tourbook every crew had received a paper on which one should note down the estimated time in which three experienced mechanics could disassemble a Boxer engine. The one who would guess the time which was next to the time counted would receive a special price. So, Tom, Stefan and Hans started to disassemble a 1.7 litre Boxer eingine with fuel injection in formula one speed... Only the valve section, the crankshaft and the rods and pistons remained untouched. After a bit more than twenty minutes all the parts lay on the table.
Late in the evening another surprise waited for the remaining Boxer-enthusiasts. A music-cassette full of comercials for the Alfasud was played. But at that time most participants were already on their way home.
On Sunday morning the few remaining Alfisti met once again at the Bürgerhalle.
By the way the Boxer-meeting also became a F 12-meeting. Two of this Volkswagn Bus concurrents made by Alfa Romeo found its way to Disternich. The first F 12 was the rolling Alfaclub-shop - based on an ex Italian ambulance. The second was a blue F 12 Kombi. The owner actually wanted to come with his Alfasud. But the Alfasuds engine collapsed and so he had to take the only front-wheel drive car of the series 750 / 105.
Last Update: February, 1st 2004 Created: October, 17th 2001
© Photos, layout and text by Tim Rauen.