RUMCars Forum

General Category => Microcar Events => Topic started by: marcus on July 27, 2007, 12:14:48 PM

Title: 2008 Liege-Brescia-Liege micro car Rally
Post by: marcus on July 27, 2007, 12:14:48 PM
Have just been notified of this by Malcolm MacKay. Will pass on details when I get back from Whitstable
Title: Re: 2008 Liege-Brescia-Liege micro car Rally
Post by: Jean on July 27, 2007, 06:11:42 PM
Title: Re: 2008 Liege-Brescia-Liege micro car Rally
Post by: Jean on July 27, 2007, 06:15:56 PM
And some more details:
A Celebration of the 50th Anniversary of the
World's only International Rally for sub-500cc cars
July 11-20, 2008
* There will be two categories on the 2008 event, each divided into engine capacity classes:
Authentic category: cars up to 500cc built prior to July 1958 or identical but built slightly later
Spirit category: cars up to 700cc built prior to 31 Dec 1967 and in the spirit of the original rally
 Authentic classes: 250cc, 350cc, 500cc
 Spirit classes: 250cc, 350cc, 500cc, 700cc
* The entry fee for the 2008 event is set at £2000 per car of two persons. This will include 11 nights accommodation in
top quality hotels, all meals, expert mechanical back-up and luggage services. This is for entries paid in full by 31
December 2007; entries paid later will attract a premium
* Our event promises to be a major tourist attraction: people adore classic microcars and the sensible pace of the rally
will give plenty of time for the public to view the cars along the route
* In today's consumption-conscious environment, the economy of these early vehicles is astonishing. It was remarked in
1958 that the total engine capacity of all 13 cars that finished the rally was less than one typical American car of the
time: this is an environmentally-friendly car rally!
* This one-off event of such rare and noticeable vehicles is generating worldwide interest: we have already received
entry applications from USA and Japan as well as throughout Europe
* The Holiday Inn hotel at Liege has already been booked for the start and finish of the rally and towcars and trailers
can be left there during the event
* Please contact the organisers for more details and entry forms
The organising team for Liege-Brescia-Liege 2008 is led by Malcolm McKay
ClassicRallyPress Ltd, 3 Pond Cottages, Edgcott, HP18 0TW, England
Tel 01296 770992

Sorry if this has not come over too well get more information at the Open Day and also in next edition of RUMCAR NEWS.  Jean
Title: Re: 2008 Liege-Brescia-Liege micro car Rally
Post by: Bob Purton on July 27, 2007, 09:09:25 PM
I got the invitation too but £2000.00 to take part ? I could buy another couple of cars for that.
Title: Re: 2008 Liege-Brescia-Liege micro car Rally
Post by: Jean on August 20, 2007, 10:41:45 AM
I have yet another email from Malcolm McKay telling me how the arrangements are going it reads:

Actually the rally is going very well so far, I've not asked anyone to send any money yet mind you, but I already have over 30 cars on the provisional entry list from Bond Minicar to Berkeley B105 - and that's all through word of mouth/email, so I expect a good few more. I'll have to decide what is the maximum I can cope with... Currently I'm sorting out hotels and trying to drum up sponsorship - no-one's actually said 'no' yet, but so far only Michelin has said yes (providing sets of maps for each car - I want them all to plot the route for themselves from the original 1958 paperwork, as the original crews would have done...

It sounds like there are a few brave souls out there, may be some more of you will think about it.  What publicity for the Microcar World.
Title: Re: 2008 Liege-Brescia-Liege micro car Rally
Post by: Dan Rodd on August 20, 2007, 01:19:07 PM
£2000 entry?hardly in the spirit of microcaring,think ill stick to the national ;)
Title: Re: 2008 Liege-Brescia-Liege micro car Rally
Post by: witney44 on August 20, 2007, 01:26:54 PM
But check out what you get for your dosh. There's no slumming it in tents here.  ;D
Title: Re: 2008 Liege-Brescia-Liege micro car Rally
Post by: Bob Purton on August 20, 2007, 08:52:35 PM
Yeh but compare it with the Moto Giro Italia, the whole caboodle with 5star hotels and travel all in for £700. I know which I would rather do! Someone is going to turn a tidy profit!
Title: Re: 2008 Liege-Brescia-Liege micro car Rally
Post by: motornoter on October 31, 2007, 11:23:12 PM
Thanks, Jean, for putting the details of Liege-Brescia-Liege on the forum - I've only just been alerted to it. Some interesting correspondence!

We're all entitled to our opinions and I realise that not every microcar enthusiast will be interested in taking part in Liege-Brescia-Liege - it's a long way, a very hard drive and a lot of money to spend on an event. But I do think those who throw stones should check their facts first.

The MotoGiro d'Italia is an excellent event. For those who aren't familiar with it, it's a motorcycle event and next year it's based in Sicily. The entire event is based on one hotel, which makes it possible to get really good rates - hotels like six-night consecutive bookings, whereas the route of Liege-Brescia-Liege means we stay in a different hotel each night. And believe me, hotels don't like taking bookings for 100+ people coming for one night only - it means if someone comes along later wanting to book a group in for a week, of which one night is the night we're there, they miss out. So, we can't get as good rates.

More significantly, though, the price you've quoted is for a SINGLE RIDER, whereas our price is for TWO PEOPLE! The MotoGiro price with passenger is 2150 euros, for which you get six nights each in hotels, six dinners and six breakfasts. On Liege-Brescia-Liege, the 3600 euro entry fee gets ELEVEN nights in hotels for two people, eleven dinners, eleven breakfasts AND ten lunches each!! Work it out, please, and then tell me which event represents better value. I've already done it and I know the answer. Now perhaps you can tell me where the 'tidy profit' is coming from??

Some background, perhaps, would be useful for the doubters.
I've been a micro fan for decades - I bought my first Berkeley T60 in 1982 when at uni in Scotland and have had one ever since. I edited the Berkeley Enthusiasts Club newsletter for about six years; I'm a writer, editor and photographer for classic car magazines in the UK and overseas.
Last year Goodwood asked me to help put together a display and parades of microcars for the Revival Meeting's special feature. It came together really well, I had a lot of help from Jean and others in the micro world, renewed old friendships and made new ones. Subsequently, one of the exhibitors reminded me of the 1958 Liege-Brescia-Liege rally, pointed out the 50th anniversary is next year and said 'someone should do something about it'... It turned out that by 'someone', he meant me...
I started to research the event, became fascinated by it and also found that very little was known about it - it was hardly mentioned in the UK press after the unfortunate failure of the Berkeley team and there wasn't that much overseas either. But I persevered and now have a great archive of information on the original event, details of the original route, contact with a couple of the original competitors and the support of the original organising club.

I'm not in this to make money, I just really believe that the 50th anniversary of this pioneering rally for economy cars should be celebrated properly and it was clear that no-one else was going to do it. In fact I pitched the original price so low at £2000 that when I came to book hotels, it became clear I was looking at a thumping loss! I therefore had to put the price up to £2400 (3600 euros) which is the absolute minimum to cover the costs. For that you get all the hotels and meals mentioned above (for two people), a great 2000-mile route which faithfully follows the original 1958 route with the exception that it does not go through Germany on autobahns, as that would be too dangerous for the smaller-engined micros in 2008. We also have museum visits and fun speed tests on kart circuits, mechanical back-up, lots of prizes, rally plates, replicas of the original rally competitor plaques and more!

The route is c200 miles a day; the longest day is almost 240 miles, which I reckon is the absolute maximum for micros these days. Anyone who thinks they can do the original 2000 mile route non-stop (apart from five hours in Brescia) as they did in 1958 is insane - the volume of traffic on the roads now makes that impossible, not to mention the strain on 50-year old mechanical components - remember, only 13 of the 27 starters in 1958 made it, and those were new cars!

It was actually quite a challenge to work out a practical way to re-run the event in 2008: the original non-stop format, with drivers taking speed and pep-pills by the handful to stay awake, is just not feasible now! That meant breaking it into sections, and finding places to stop at reasonable intervals - easier said than done when the original route was designed to include as many challenging roads as possible. Fortunately we managed to split it up neatly into 10 days' driving and find four or five-star hotels in each location big enough to accommodate us.

I've prattled on enough for one night - if you want to know more about the event, check out the Liege-Brescia-Liege pages of or email me on

Title: Re: 2008 Liege-Brescia-Liege micro car Rally
Post by: Bob Purton on November 01, 2007, 09:54:16 AM
Alright, I recant. I am puzzled over your remark about not using the autobarn though because of it being too dangerous, those of us who micro through germany always take the autobarn, for any car that is capable of doing say 50mph its the best way to swallow up the miles. I hope you will be writing a report of the event for RUMCAR NEWS so that rich and poor alike can enjoy the spills and thrills. Regarding the Moto Giro, the usual event in mainland Italy involves  staying at many different hotels, the Sicily event is the acception on account of the fact that its a small island. I sincerly wish you all the best with the event , its a lot of effort for a brass farthing!
Title: Re: 2008 Liege-Brescia-Liege micro car Rally
Post by: motornoter on November 01, 2007, 10:00:16 PM
Interesting point about the autobahn - I agree it's a great way of swallowing the miles but having used the autobahn a few times last week during the recce, I know it's all two-lane in the area we cover, much of it is limit-free and it's busy.

That means you get BMWs in the outside lane doing 130+mph (I was doing 100mph and they were passing me like I was standing still), and trucks line astern in the inside lane doing 60-70mph.
If you're in a Bond Minicar, a Berkeley 328, an Isetta or a Heinkel/Trojan doing 40-50mph and it's pouring with rain, those trucks just aren't going to see you until it's too late.

I don't want to feel responsible for an accident like that, so I've decided the best policy is to avoid the autobahns altogether - even though I know the faster micros would be reasonably safe on it. I don't know if our German micro friends or regular micro travellers through Germany have had any nasty experiences, anyone care to comment?

The consolation is I've found some lovely routes through the 'Swabian Alps', Bavaria and the Black Forest - lovely open winding roads, pretty villages, stunning castles etc that are so much more interesting than the autobahn, and never far from the original route.

Interestingly, the autobahn section, on which they had to average 60kph, proved more devastating to the 1958 rally entry than most of the mountain passes - three of the 27 starters failed on it:
One of the Citroen 2CVs "melted a con-rod"
One of the Berkeley 328s seized its gearbox (sounds familiar, I had that with my T60 years ago on the A3 going into London, locked solid on the twisty three-lane section with no hard shoulder. Panic induced superhuman strength and I managed to haul the seized car bodily up the high kerb onto the grass verge! I've still got the seized gearbox...)
and one of the Berkeley 492s also gave out on the autobahn - no details recorded of why...

We'll certainly have reports and photos for RUMCAR News after the event, I'll write it if no-one else does but I'm sure some of the participants will want to write of their adventures. Sadly I won't be taking part in my Berkeley T60, much as I'd like to, but as chief organiser I'll have to be rushing from one place to another checking on things and helping people out, so I'll have to drive a modern!

Title: Re: 2008 Liege-Brescia-Liege micro car Rally
Post by: Bob Purton on November 01, 2007, 10:38:14 PM
Ahh, I see. I does sound like a particularly dangerous section of autobhan. The alternative route sound delightful! I just wish I was going! Regards, Bob
Title: Re: 2008 Liege-Brescia-Liege micro car Rally
Post by: motornoter on November 17, 2007, 10:40:37 PM
Thanks, Bob!

Just to let everyone know, we've now published entry forms and regulations, entries are limited because the hotels are filling up already, so if you anyone is interested and hasn't received the forms yet, please email me quick! If you don't get a reply, try again - I reply to all emails within 24 hours but I know some have simply not reached me (the internet's not what it used to be...)

Title: Re: 2008 Liege-Brescia-Liege micro car Rally
Post by: motornoter on January 11, 2008, 11:37:24 AM
Dear all,
There are still a few places left on the microcar event of the century!
We have entries coming in from all over the world - Europe, USA, Australia - and cars include every model of Berkeley, BMW Isetta/600/700, Bond Minicar, Citroen 2CV, Fiat 500 and 600, Heinkel, Messerschmitt KR200 and TG500, Goggo Dart, Subaru 360, Vespa 400, Zundapp Janus...
It's going to be an amazing experience, nothing like this has happened for 50 years and is unlikely to happen again for another 50, so get your entry in quick.
Several entrants are looking for co-drivers, so if you don't have a suitable car on the road but would like to join in, do please let me know and I will pass on your contact details - seats are available in Heinkel, Berkeley SE328 and Berkeley B95 at present!
All the best
Title: Re: 2008 Liege-Brescia-Liege micro car Rally
Post by: bodzamno on January 15, 2008, 09:45:01 AM
I've just had a look at the provisional list of entries,both confirmed and pending.Interesting to see that under registered but unconfirmed listings shows a new TG500 owner,chap called Perry Olds.When did he get a Tiger and where from?? Is this a new car in the country? does it show up on the register? or is it just a case of wishfull thinking??
Title: Re: 2008 Liege-Brescia-Liege micro car Rally
Post by: Dan Rodd on January 15, 2008, 11:54:12 AM
ill ask him when he adds a Reliant Regal to his collection ;)