By David Whitney
The Car Clubs on the island are once again looking forward to a fantastic year of events, shows and rallies as the holidays are now over and the Car Club scene gets underway. The first to rev off was the friendly Club de Cotxes Classics Mallorca who meet at The Boathouse along the Paseo in Palma every Wednesday evening. The Club’s first event of the new Season was the Almond Blossom Rally on Sunday 25 January.
With the unsettled weather the Almond Blossom is in short supply and Sunday was once again a day to be indoors rather than in an open top Classic car. It did not put off members of the Club despite the harsh and windy conditions as some 25 cars gathered at the famous “Es Cruce” restaurant near Manacor for the start of the drive. After a welcome coffee and for many, a typical Majorcan breakfast, well, Majorcan sausages and a whole lot more, the event got underway.
Well done to Jean Pierre Aleman who organised both an interesting and challenging rally through the central area of the island. The rally took in many pleasant villages from San Joan, Porreres, Felanitx and onto Campos for a well earned lunch at a private clubhouse near Campos. A spicy goulash followed by Swiss style cheese Raclette rounded off what was a fun and joyful lunch. It was good news for Malcolm Kelliner in his TR3 and co-pilot John who amazingly were able to correctly answer all the question en-route to score the maximum 50 points on offer. Congratulations also to Dirk & Irene and Pam & Lou for their well fought second and third places. A great start to the season and keep a look out for more news on the Car Club scene in our regular Motoring pages.
For those that enjoy seeing the Supercars and other exotic cars then we shall be reporting on the first of the season rally event by the “Driving Mallorca” Club. As always it should be both a fun and challenging drive. The Orange Picking Rally is on Sunday 7 February and hopefully the sun will be shining and fresh orange will be the order of the day, and if not a small glass of vino will not go amiss!!
More Supercar Drive Experiences and track events are planned so more news and dates to come. I also hear through the grapevine that some new and rare Supercars will be arriving on the island very soon so look out for our special articles on these new cars. One will certainly be a first on the island.
The road ahead maybe a little clearer and it was a move in the right direction for many car owners and Car Clubs at a lobby Meeting a few weeks ago. Driving Mallorca, together with other car clubs and car enthusiasts from around the island received a welcome boost at a well attended meeting held at the Hippodrome in Palma when at last, a Member of the Government acknowledged that there was much to be done on the island to help owners of rare and unique cars and Car Owner Clubs.
It was hats off to Marga Duran Cladera of the Partido Popular and Speaker of the Balearic Parliament who had agreed to the meeting to hear the views and often complaints from those attending.
With over 60 people at the meeting it became clear that the Government and some departments were not as helpful or supportive as you would expect when it came to the registration of classic, US and other imported cars. Bringing such cars onto the island must be made easier.
It was apparent that the current failure within Government to recognise the benefits from car shows, car events and auto sport as both a tourist and visitor attraction creating income generation was another major issue that needed to be addressed.
For those at the meeting there was clearly too much bureaucracy, paperwork to complete and obstacles put in the way for those looking to bring such events to the island and Palma. It is an opportunity being lost as support for such events has been seen and Majorca could easily create another niche market for the island with many events becoming an annual event as in the case of the Classico Rally taking place in March.
The feelings and ideas put across were all noted and it was recognised that there was a problem and promises were made to address the concerns of many. Making life easier for car registrations will certainly help and having the Government support rather than hinder car events was now on the agenda and welcomed by all.
It is early days and there will certainly be follow up meetings, but at last progress may be made and it is a step in the right direction.
The good news already is that the Council has now asked Car Clubs to put on a display in Palma for the Sa Rua Carnival along the Avenue Jamie III from around 10.00 am until 2pm when the cars will then drive to the Paseo Maritimo. So look out for more details. The Sa Rua Carnival takes place on Sunday 15 February.
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