This past week I was contacted by Dutch rallyist Carl Verboom. Carl wanted to know if the changes that Terratrip made to my Terratrip 101 Plus have been made to all subsequent versions of the Terratrip 101 Plus odometers. I could not really answer that question for Carl, but we exchanged some messages about rallies in Holland.
Carl has been rallying in Holland for about fifteen years. As I understand it he has a Triumph Spitfire, a Volvo estate or station wagon, and a BMW 316i. The picture below shows Carl with some rally trophies and his Spitfire.
Carl Verboom and co-driver Nienke van Kerkhof with his Triumph Spitfire at the NOL in 1998
Apparently there are lots of classic car rallies in Holland. Carl said that it is possible to take part in a classic car rally on almost every weekend. In Holland there is a difference between classic rallies and reliability events. In reliability events, the navigation is complex and the average speed is relatively low, with the maximum set at 36 km/hour. In a classic rally, the navigation is a bit simpler, and the speed is up to 49.9 km/hour. In Holland you can drive competition events on open roads, but the maximum average speed in the event can’t exceed 50 km/hour. In Holland there is a championship for both reliability and classic rally categories.
The main events in Holland are classic rallies, for example, the Classic Tulip Rallye, Coppa d’Europa, Classic SLS (Scheveningen Luxemburg Scheveningen), and Horneland Rally. These events are all international, meaning that the rally routes are in more than one country. These rallies are not cheap and can take place over several days, up to a week.
The Mercedes-Benz shown below, driven by John van der Wekken, is taking part in the 2009 Nacht van Weesp rally.
A Nice Mid-1960s Mercedes SL Rallying In the Dutch Countryside
There are some good slightly smaller events that stay within Holland borders such as the ROZ Classic (Ronde Om de Zuiderzee), 7 Uren van Emmeloord, (7 hours of Emmeloord), and the Classic 500 Challenge, the GVR and the NOL.
However, Carl usually participates in the smaller, less expensive events. Carl Verboom, like many rallyists the world over, is restricted by time and money. As a result, he competes mainly in local or what could be described as “club events”. At his home club, the Amersfoortse Motor en Automobiel Club (AMAC), they have 10 events a year – 8 small events and 2 big events. The small events are held about once a month on a Wednesday evening. They are about 60-70 km long, and have a duration of about 2 – 2 1/2 hours. These rallies are not expensive, at 10 Euros per team if both team members are members of the AMAC; 15 Euros when they are not. These events are quite popular attracting 50 – 70 entries. These events hosted by his own club, the AMAC, are among Carl’s personal favorites as they are well-organized, have a friendly atmosphere, and are well attended. Besides his entries in the AMAC events, Carl participates in five to ten events of other organizations per year.
For a rather small country, he notes that there are about 30 automotive clubs in Holland, with about 10 of them having comparable rally events.
Carl often navigates for other drivers. The picture below shows Carl, on the left, at the ROZ Classic rally in 2008 where he was navigating in an Alfa Romeo sedan.
Ronde Om de Zuiderzee 2008, Alfa Romeo Giulia 1600 Super 1968, classified 10th, Sportklasse Driver Oscar Uhlhorn, co-driver Carl Verboom
The two big events of the AMAC are both about 8 hours long and cover about 260 km. One is a daytime rally, while the other event is a night rally. These rallies cost about 150 – 180 Euros per team. They are the GVR, the Gelderse Vallei Rit (Gelders Valley Tour) and the NOL, the Nacht Om de Lange Jan (Night around the Long John) The “Lange Jan” is a tower in Amersfoort, and the AMAC is the autoclub of Amersfoort.
Carl won the GVR three times and he was the rallymaster of the GVR from 2005 – 2010. He expects to be the rallymaster of the NOL in the near future and he noted that he has won the NOL 5 times. So you can see that Carl is a very good and committed rallyist!
Carl is also a big fan of the ROZ classic. He drove it when it was still a reliability event in ‘97, ‘98 and ‘99. It started in Amsterdam and made a tour around the IJsselmeer. It consisted of three legs of approximately 6 hours each with two rest periods of half an hour and three-quarters of an hour. It had a length of 600-650 km, starting in Amsterdam on a Saturday at 09:30, and finishing at the same location in Amsterdam on Sunday at 05:00 – 06:00. He noted that sadly, reliability events have become less popular in Holland, and the organizers of the ROZ had to change the event into a classic rally. However, the reliability roots are still present in the event. So it is a mix of rally and reliability, which he likes. Carl participated in the ROZ 14 times, both as a driver and a navigator, ten times finishing in the top 10 and winning it in 2010.
The picture below shows Carl in his BMW that was taken at a control in the 2011 “Gelderse Vallei Rit” rally (rough translation: Gelderse Valley Ride) organised by the AMAC. The AMAC is closely related to the organisation of the Classic Tulip Rally.
Carl Verboom’s BMW In The Gelderse Vallei Rit, co-driver is two times Dutch Champion Arthur Denzler
The “7 uren van Emmeloord” is also very popular. It is an event that in the near past didn’t count for a championship, but every year everyone was present, because of the good organization and the nice atmosphere during the event. Carl participated in the “7 Uren van Emmeloord” four times, winning it in 2004, and since 2008 he has been one of the rallymasters of the event.
2013 is a special year as Carl’s club, the AMAC, celebrates its 80th birthday. As part of the celebrations, on April 12 and 13 there will be a special two day event, where Carl will be one of the rallymasters. Also in 2013, the 60th edition of the Classic Tulip Rallye will be run. In only 10 days time after the registration opened, the Classic Tulip Rallye organization received 225 entries, and the registration then closed. See all about the Tulpenrallye at www.tulpenrallye.nl . And also in 2013, the 50th edition of the ROZ will be run. A special event of two days, Carl Verboom and his usual teammate Rutger Kwant have already registered.
Omloop van het Oosten Rally Organizer’s BMW
Carl’s insight into rallying in Holland provides further evidence that the classic rally scene in Europe is very vigorous while in North America it is virtually non-existent. Sure, examples in North America can be found, but it seems that there are more classic rallies in a rather small country like Holland in one month than in North America in a year. Rather sad isn’t it.
For information about many of these rallys, check out the following websites: