This calendar year I prescribe ten years Auto Motor Klassiek. During this period I met many people and made reports with them and their classics. In the near future I will share a number of memories from the past ten years with you, and I will randomly highlight a number of cars with which we went out. Today the third memory: on the road with the VW Golf Cabriolet in the Creme21 Youngtimer rally of 2022.
On August 21 of last year I received a special app message. Sicco Dijkstra was the sender and he invited me to drive the Creme 21 Youngtimer Rallye. I didn't have to think long about that, I just had to rearrange my agenda. And I said yes. And asked Bart Spijker to come along as a navigator and photographer.
There was something else fun. We had a choice of four cars, but Bart and I quickly agreed that we would take the Golf Cabriolet to…..Germany. And there we went to participate in the five-day rally that led along the route I predicted. Because that was another surprise. What we knew was that the start would be at the Nürburgring, there was the welcome day. When registering, it became clear that the Spijker-Van Putten team was given starting number 35, which was the age of the Golf.
And then came the invitation and instruction letter. This confirmed the route I always wanted to drive again. The rally ran through the Eifel, the Hunsrück, Rheinland-Pfalz, Saarland, a piece of France and the Black Forest, spread over four driving days. Along the way we visited beautiful museums, and the organization had put together a phenomenal road book, which contained routes that were good for unadulterated car happiness and gave you the idea that you were in your own universe for five days. The panoramas and variety were simply amazing.
And that luck started at the Nürburgring, where we drove a few laps on the evening of the welcome day. It was astonishing to see how the classics were chased by most of the teams. Just driving the infamous Ring was a magical experience. We left out the testosterone, we cherished the Gulf.
The open VW rewarded us with a strong performance for five days. The 1.6 RE engine without a cat was well suited to its task, both on flat surfaces and in areas where the height differences were sometimes considerable. The trick was to keep the speed at 3000 revolutions per minute to keep driving.
The Golf was a fine driver's car, which effortlessly tackled the better cornering, especially if you carefully started the steering maneuver in the run-up to the corner. And just like every VW from that time (1987), it turned out to be childishly simple in its operation. And not only that: the Golf felt extremely solid, all mechanics did their job excellently, even when we had to make an emergency stop after a crazy overtaking maneuver by participants with a BMW.
A lot happened, the impressions were countless, and the most beautiful facets of driving came together during a fantastically organized event. The collaboration with Bart never caused convex windows, it was great on board. And that was a plus during the five days in which I got to live one of my car dreams. Five days, which brought me one of the most beautiful reports and one of my most beautiful car experiences. And that was not least because of the Golf, who proved throughout the rally why he was the right choice for us.
Last year we wrote a triptych about the experiences during the Creme21 Youngtimerally. You read the stories here.