Article of Anja
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23-25 January 2015 - Mini Winter Rally
Wednesday five PM everything ready to leave for the Mini Winterrally in Switserland.
The week before was Wesley and his friend Serge still working to install a other engine in our moke. So it promised to be very exciting. He found the engine at Coopernet(.nl) in the Netherlands in Ruinen. Also recently our Mini Park Lane received a new heart (engine) and now it drives again without problems.
The first day we drove to just after the border of Luxembourg to sleep in a IBIS hotel (Thionville).
The trip went smoothly, despite the freezing our new engine did it very well.
Only our right side mirror is going to fly when Wesley put a truck over.
We returned back to look for him but unfortunately we didn’t found it back.
Original Mini Moke mirrors are very rare so it's a pity that we have not found him.
Luckily we had a very good trip and at 3 o'clock in the afternoon we arrived at our hotel IBIS Crissier.
It was very nice to meet the usual foreign mini teams in the bar again. We were already busy catching up when Guy, the MRW organizer, came to welcome us.
We soon heard the news that this year they had an extra help in their organization, John, a Welshman who lived for several years in Switzerland and his son Jason, are now a permanent fixture in the MWR team. Jason and Glenn (son of Guy) take car for the technical support during the rally. Just like every year, is this not a superfluity!
After the success of last year was Friday dipped back to a swissday. Each team receives a road book, which brings us to blissful tourist paths through the snowy landscape to a chalet in Les Paccots. En route the English teams; Helen en Ken, Keith en his son Chris, Richard en Jason and the swiss germain team: Siegfried and Ursula, and Wesley and I,we took a coffee stop at the beautiful place on the Geneva Lake in the village Vevey. Ever been a final stop of the MWR in 2011. After warming up we drove the last piece in the mountains. The roads were whiter, more tortuous and ended on a snowy playground for our mini snow gliders and handbrake testers.
For the most of then a lot of fun. For Wesley a little bit until the snow turns blue.
The waterreservoir of the jet had come loose but fortunately Wesley recovered it quickly. Also, we encountered much noise from the metal fan of the radiator. That something to fixe later in the evening.
Now we could enjoy a delicious Cheese Fondue in the chalet "Le Tsalè" at 1049 m altitude. After the meal we were treated to a fantastic snow walk and a glass of mulled wine. I unfortunately did not come that far because the exertion and heavy meal did me felt suddenly unwell and Wesley and I returned. While we waited for the group we benefited to make beautiful pictures of our yellow Mini Moke in the snow.
When everyone was back of the walk, we drove together to our hotel. Glenn had given Wesley a plastic fan and while we were sitting in the bar from die hotel, he quickly repaired the Moke himself. The radiator was to high on the subframe, there was a metal grommet between the subframe and radiator bracket. So that must be remove it. Water out, radiator out, … metal out and evrything back. Perfect !
The next morning, time for the real job! Every participant received breakfast at the start and after talking some picture we started at nummer 17.
At 9 o’clock Guy and John were giving the briefing. The rally consists of several etapes, every etape must be driven in a certain time and at a specific average. At the start will be given a start time and at the end the organization write down the time when you arrives. It is important that you keep the average speed on the way because several security control writes down your time when you pass them. If you arrive early to a etapes per minute you get double penalty than if you come in late. Itself is not difficult, but on public roads, through small villages, mountains downhill and uphill and then you still have to have lucky that trains do not have to pass through or the traffic lights just jump on red! Luck has a lot to do with it.
Now everyone was ready to go. Number by number we could start each per minute. Our roadbook on Saturday consisted mainly of tulips etapes. Also a special map exercise, "Just for you NANNY HELEN". Helen, a co-pilot from one of the English teams had been grandmother a few months ago and that is something that Guy wanted not just let it pass. Wesley and I always try as much as possible to do our best. If only out of respect for the organizers who still insert a lot of effort and time to stabbing this rally together. Yet when we saw Siegfried and Ursula on the side of road standing with Mini breakdown, we stopped immediately to help them. The throttle stuck. But fortunately with some WD40 they could soon drive further. Although time is always precious, we still find helping Mini friends more important assignees roadside emergency. We know from experience that others did this for us.
The Moke did it very good after Wesley reperation. Even on the last mountain stage, when the snow started to fall very heavy, we reached smoothly upwards. And every Mini was arrived just in time before they closed the road.
After a beautiful day with many snowy roads, it was time for our traditional Swiss evening. Starting with a delicious meal; usually a typical Swiss dish with a surprising dessert. Apricot liqueur with apricot sorbet, Wesley and Jason got there at 2 and liqueurs were soon consumed without sorbet.
But the night was still young, after a football game, a national snooker competition was held until the late hours. But the night was still young, after a football game, a national snooker competition was held until the late hours. Around 2 am, our cozy evening ended with a refreshing snowball fight. Luckily it was a friendly mach.
The night was a littlebit too short to be good and the one hangover though slightly heavier than the other. Yet again we were all ready for day two of MWR.
Because there was quite a lot of snow and a the most of the participants foresaw their Minis with snow chains. To lose no time, we wanted to try it first without. Luckily managed this quite well. So the first etape was a successful mission. Then 2 large etapes and MWR was back in the past.
Without expecting it, we ended up on a third. A French mini team was first (Fillietaz Olivier and Jean-Charles Loeb) and a Swiss team (Oliver Ramel and Vanessa Di Grado) was 2nd.
It was a fantastic weekend, we came the next day to return home with a heavy heart, but still enjoyed again the perfect organization, super cool mini friends and a weekend to remember quickly.
This summer we are definitely looking forward to going back for the International Mini Moke weekend organized by the Swiss Romand Mini Club.
2 posts • Page 1 of 1
- MMC Member
- Posts: 847
- Joined: Fri Dec 31, 2010 15:55
- Location: Kenilworth. UK
Hi Anja, sounds like you and Wesley had a fantastic weekend, well done on coming third.
Regards, Graham & Judith
1981 Aussie Moke
1989 Portuguese Moke
1992 VW T3 Multivan LLE No 2113
1981 Aussie Moke
1989 Portuguese Moke
1992 VW T3 Multivan LLE No 2113