" OK, so the snow is causing chaos all over the nation and even the most curmudgeonly of time-and motion obsessed bosses has to concede it might be time to close up shop for a day of sledging and hot chocolate "
The Winter Marathon is taking bookings
Which pre-1968 car would you take along?
Along 277 miles including nine Dolomite road passes, 12 hours of non-stop driving, mainly at night, the Winter Marathon, will run from January 19-22 in Madonna di Campiglio, Italy.
As the most important winter motorsport event dedicated to vintage cars, it is also one of the most fascinating. Being held for the 29th time in 2017, and the 10th time organised by Vecars (owned by Mille Miglia winners Roberto and Andrea Vesco), the Winter Marathon long weekend will start on Thursday, January 19, 2017 from Madonna di Campiglio, a popular ski resort where the technical and administrative checks of registered cars will be carried out.
In 2016 there were 122 teams, with 20 automotive brands, eight nationalities of crews and 24 Top Drivers, with true gems of historical collections such as the Fiat 508 S Balilla Sport, Porsche 356A coupé and 912, Volvo P1800, Triumph TR2 and Lancia Fulvia.
On Thursday evening, the first 32 members registered will participate in the APT Trophy on a brightly lit frozen lake, while on Friday at 2pm the main race, the essence of this magnificent event, will begin.
For this new edition, the course has undergone some changes. It has been extended by 19 miles, including three new Dolomiti passes, that will lead participants to take in magnificent and incredible scenery, one of the UNESCO world heritage sites, at night, to at height of 2,240 meters achieved on the Passo Della Sella.
After 51 time trials, which will measure the ability and the concentration of the crews, the arrival of the first car on the final parade in Madonna di Campiglio, the starting point, is expected at around 2.30am.
The next day, two reserved unclassified trophies will be contested, the first (Trophy Mafra) for pre-war cars participating in the Winter Marathon and the second (Trophy Eberhard) for the first 32 classified on the frozen lake.
The main sponsor of the Winter Marathon has been Porsche for the last 10 years, with Porsche Center Brescia and its chairman Beatrice Saottini, who participated several times in the race as a navigator in the beautiful Porsche 356 Speedster, the subject of an anecdote.
During an earlier Winter Marathon her car left with the top down. During the night the temperature dropped a lot and they decided to raise it, but the heat from their bodies with the roof closed created condensation inside, which quickly turned to ice on the windscreen and windows. She said they had to lower it again and run through much of the race “with the cold whipping us in the face”.
Online entries for the Winter Marathon are being accepted until December 11, and it’s open to cars built before 1968, but some special historical and collectible models produced up to 1976 might also be eligible.
While the winter is often thought of as the off-season for motor racing, the #WinterMarathon2017 keeps it alive and brings the passion for classic cars and racing to the unique and spectacular setting of Italy’s Dolomite Mountains.
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