The Trofeo Alfasud

For the first time in 1975 there was a race only for Alfasuds. It was the Austrian ex-racedriver Ortner who initiated this race. The race was indeed so succesfull that Alfa Romeo started an official Alfasud trophy in Italy and 1978 in Paul Ricard.Austria in 1976. One year later there were national Alfasud trophies in France and in Germany, too. The Trofeo Alfasud ("Trofeo" means trophy) was intended to be a preparation and promotion for young drivers, and for people who still wanted to become a race-driver. In addtion to the national trophies, Alfa Romeo initiated the "Trofeo Europa Alfasud" in 1977 which allowed the best drivers of the national trophies to compete with eachother. Till 1981 there were 151 races. 142 of them were national Trofeo Alfasud races and 12 of them were Trofeo Europa races. Besides the trophy races there was the "Corsa di Friuli" in Varano in 1976 (which was meant as aid for the victims of the earthquake in Friuli). And even in winter, the Alfasuds did not have to sleep in their garages. On the occasion of the international Alfasud trophies "Neve e Ghiaccio" (snow and ice) one raced in 1977 in Cortina d' Ampezzo, 1978 and 1979 in Baselga di Piné, 1980 in Breuil Cervinia and 1981 in Lavarone on snowy or icy tracks. Those events resembled of the Trophé Andros which The Autodelta tuning kit for the Trofeo Alfasud.took place in the 1990s in France. All those events and - of course the cars - where supported by Alfa Romeo in Italy or by the Alfa Romeo settlements outside Italy. There were interesting prizes, in total 400 Million Lire worth, which were an extra incentive when you won a race or the championship.
 The Alfasud ti with 1286 cm³ engine was used as basis for the Trofeo Alfasud. Those cars were prepared for racing purposes with an Autodelta-made kit. Besides the compulsory safety equipment (roll cage, fire extinguisher, bucket seat etc.), the kit included a larger front air dam, wheelarch extensions and a larger rear spoiler made of plastic which was intended to give the car more down force at top speed. The suspension got new coil springs and shock absorbers and 8" x 13" Campagnolo alloy wheels with 235/45 x 13 tyres (specially designed Pirelli P7 Corsa slicks or rain low profile tyres). The engine also received an intensive treatment. E.g. the kit included two Weber 44 IDF 20/200 - 21/200 twin-choke downdraft carburettors. A new exhaust pipe - which endet below the driver's door - assured a low exhaust counter-pressure. In the begining the modified engine developped 115 bhp at 6500 rpm. Till 1981 the power output had increased up to 126 to 128 bhp at 8000 rpm. With such a powerful engine under the bonnet, the Alfasud tis could reach a top speed of nearly 200 kph.

The Trofeo Alfasud kit for the Alfasud ti 1.3 in detail
 

Number Description
Chassis:
4 race shock aborbers SPICA (setting + 25 or +50)
1 steering wheel (not for Germany)
4 coil springs
8 brake pads FRENDO (not for Germany)
1 oilcooler with adapters and hoses
5 alloy wheels 8 x 13
5 race tyres (slicks or rain tyres) (not for Germany)
1 Unibal kit for the front suspension
16 bolts and nuts for the wheels
2 front brake pressure hoses (special versions)
2 reinforced Mc Pherson-struts (front suspension)
1 anti-roll bar for the rear suspension
Engine:
1 race exhaust pipe
2 Weber 44 IDF carburators
2 complete air intakes
4 air intake "trumpets"
1 special oil sump
2 special camshafts
8 special bucket tappets
8 special valve springs with spring plates
8 reinforced rod screws
4 special pistons
2 cylinder head gaskets
4 bronze bearings for the gudgeon pins
1 set of rod bearings
1 additional engine bearing
1 water discharge pipe
1 oil collector box made of plastic
Body:
1 full roll cage (not for Germany)
1 fire extinguisher (not for Germany)
1 seat belt (not for Germany)
1 bucket seat (not for Germany)
4 wheelarch extensions
1 front spoiler
1 rear spoiler
1 set of bonnet locks
1 set of tow-hooks
1 partition between interior and bonnet
1 rear cable cover
1 headlight cover
2 mirrors (not for Germany)
1 main currenecy switch (not for Germany)
1 set with bearings for the oilcooler

The prizes
Each team received 200.000 Lire for the start in a race in its home country. 700.000 Lire were paid when a team started in a foreignThe winner of Modena in 1978. country. The lucky one who finished first place in a Trofeo Europa Alfasud race was the new owner of 450.000 Lire. The second position was 300.000 Lire worth. The third received 250.000 Lire, the fourth 225.000 Lire, the fifth 200.000 Lire, the sixth 175.000, the seventh 150.000, the eighth 125.000, the nineth 100.000 and the tenth 75.000 Lire. The positions 11 to 20 added some 50.000 Lire into the team's burse.

The prizes for the final positions at the end of the racing season were (here 1981) were of great promise:
1st position: a GTV6 2.5
2nd position: a GTV 2.0
3rd position: a Giulietta 2.0
4th position: an Alfasud Sprint Veloce 1.5
5th position: an Alfasud Ti 1.5
The sixth position added 3.000.000 to your personal belongings, the seventh 2.500.000, the eighth 2.000.000, the nineth 1.500.000 and the tenth 1.000.000 Lire. The drivers on the positions eleven to 15 received half a million Lire. (All numbers for the 1981 season.)

The pilots
Presumably Gerhard Berger was the best known driver who started in the Trofeo Alfasud. He later became a well known Formula 1 1978 in Paul Ricard.driver. Meanwhile he is resposible for the BMW Formula 1 team. His Trofeo Alfasud race car is still existing. Karl Wendlinger Junior, the father of the former Formula 1 pilot of the nineties; Harald Storck, whose car was prepared at Alfa Romeo Hähn in Mannheim, Germany and Massimo Nardelli are other well-known names. Jürgen Zerha, the famous sport auto photographer and Harry Schulze, owner of  PS-Schulze (who offered 1.8 and 2.0 litre boxer engines) also started in the Trofeo Europa Alfasud. Mr. Zerha still drives historical race cars. The Trofeo Europa was - of course - crowded with many Italian and Austrian drivers. Many pilots are unknown today. One has to know that Italy is the country of race drivers. Many started and start a race driver's career, but only very few managed to become internationally known.

The Règlement
The only accepted car was the Alfasud ti 1300. Second hand cars could also be used. The Autodelta kit - as described - was prescribed, too. Every run had to have a length of at least 50 km. Preliminary runs had to have a minimum lenght of 30 km. Each driver received a number which remained the same during the season. It was allowed to place sponsor's advertisments on the cars (as you can see on the pictures, many teams made use of this allowance). The stickers which were included in the Autodelta kit had to remain on the car for the whole season. During the training, the rules only allowed usual fuel. The responsible officials determined which fuel the Alfasuds got during the races. The use of a different fuel lead to disqualification. In the 1981 season there were ten races in the Trofeo Europa Alfasud:
 
15.3. Vallelunga (I)
20.4. Zeltweg (A)
3.5. Imola (RSM)
17.5. Mainz-Finthen (D)
7.6. Pau (F)
21.6. Jarama (E)
5.7. Dijon (F)
2.8. Hockenheim (D)
16.8. Zeltweg (A)
13.9. Monza (I)

2. Trofeo Neve e Ghiaccio (Baselga di Piné 7. / 8. 01.1978)>>

2° Trofeo Alfasud in Baselga di pine' (Trento January 7. / 8. 1978).

Technical determinations
The parts which were included in the Autodelta kit (e.g. wheels, tyres, carburators and oilcooler) had to be used. The nozzles, air restrictor nozzles and emulsion tubes of the carburators respectively all parts which could alter the fuel supply could be modified. The amount of air which reached the combustion chambers had to stay unchanged. The number of (mechanical or electrical) fuel pumps was left to choice of the team's mechanics. The engine block had to stay unchanged, it was only allowed to out-can the cylinders. The cylinder head had to remain nearly unchanged. The crankshaft had to have a weight of at least 10,0 kg, the fly wheel 6,0 kg and the rods 500 gr each. The serial gearbox remained in the car, too. It was allowed to use the drive shafts of an Alfasud Ti 1.5. The team also could chose which clutch liner they would use. The race exhaust pipe had to be used in all countries except in Germany. During the races in Germany, the cars had to run with their serial exhaust. The cars had to have a minimum weight of 800 kg including all safety devices; without fuel, tool-kit and spare wheel but including all liquids (e.g. oil and recoolant).

Later on, the  Trofeo Alfasud was relieved by the  Trofeo Sprint. Now, one made use of the 1490 cm³ engine which developped between 145 and 148 bhp at 7500 to 8000 rpm.

(Please notice: The majority of the mentioned data is valid for the 1981 season of the Trofeo Europa Alfasud. Most information is taken out of the book "Trofeo Europa '81 Alfasud Alitalia" by the Servizio Attitivà Sportive Alfa Romeo, Milano)

Many thanks to Alexander Wechselberger and Peter Dyrelund.

Back


Last Update: February, 23rd 2004      Created: March, 12th 2001

© Layout and text by Tim Rauen.