The summer high mass of the kind-fair locomotion of noblest automobiles knew to celebrate its 30th edition duly. Or, to quote a much-quoted slogan: It was a summer like back then.
And a wonderful one at that. 259 classic cars with their brave pilots, mostly from their owners, but sometimes also as a valuable loan from knowledgeable acquaintances; 24 of them partly purebred racing cars without road registration, which competed in the newly created Racecar Trophy on various race tracks; all this in bright weather including pleasant rain cooling in between, always away from the well-filled spectator ranks at the major local crossings – heart of the classic car lover, what more could you want?
Ennstal-Classic 2022: The Winners
First of all, the sports: Friedrich Radinger and Thomas Wagner won the Ennstal-Classic for the fifth time overall with their 1971 Mini 1275 GT. This did not cause any fad: The top ten in the overall standings presented themselves in a colorful mix in the half-day rhythm, only at the very last event it was decided whether the winners would save their lead to the finish and who would take second and third place. In the end Florian and Dieter Böhmdorfer on Mercedes-Benz 350 SLC (1972) came second and Helmut Schramke / Peter Umfahrer on Jaguar XK 150 (1960) third.
So much for motorsport being a male domain: the Racecar Trophy was won by Evita Stadler on her Formula Ford 1600 Hawke DL2 (1969) in the main Formula car competition, and by no means by a narrow margin; the winner had an impressive 2772-point lead over the runner-up, veteran Johannes Huber on his KMW Porsche SP20 (1971). In third place: comedian and racing fan Rudi Roubinek with his 1980 Fiat-Abarth Formula 2000.
The Rally and GT class was won by Enrico Falchetto and Heike Falk in a 1984 Renault 5 Turbo 2, while the Supercars class was undisputedly dominated by the two Porsche 911 GT3 RS in the starting field, with the team of Burak Yilmaz and Christian Ristig ultimately coming out on top.
The Youngster Trophy, which was won by Leonard Kapsch and Nicholas Antoni (Mercedes-Benz 280 SL / 1969) ahead of Margarita and Magdalena Voglar (Alfa Romeo Giulia TI / 1964) and Christopher Wischenbart with Florian Pachleitner (Porsche 911 TF / 1972), also deserves a proud mention. Not only as sponsor of this Trophy, but generally responsible for partnership grip: Tire manufacturer Vredestein. Cluster Director Central Europe Harald Kilzer always personally tackles both Ennstal-Classic and Planai-Classic on his own axles, the 30th edition of the summer edition he finished with co-pilot Gudrun Aybek on MG C Roadster (1968) on the sensational 19th overall place.
Big hello on the final day, joy and celebration mood everywhere, the “Night of the Champions” lasted until the early morning.
Ennstal-Classic 2022: Partners and Sponsors
The Ennstal-Classic is indebted to its long-standing partners and sponsors. For example, the Imlauer Hotel Schloss Pichlarn, always a noble venue for the opening evening, where two anniversaries met this year: the 30th Ennstal-Classic and the 50th anniversary of the historic country castle as a hotel. Spotted in the audience were: Hans Knauss together with his wife Barbara. “Wings for Live” boss Anita Gerhardter. Of course also on site: the rally participants Rudi Roubinek, Jo Ramirez, Arturo Merzario and Wolfgang Porsche.
Further thanks go to the Dachstein-Schladming region. The textile supplier Mothwurf. Vredestein, as already mentioned.
And finally: to the House of Porsche, which year after year brings its family silver to Gröbming on the final day, together with the honorable relative Porsche Design, which as the name giver of the “Porsche Design Grand Prix”, provides the appropriate setting, and to Porsche Holding, which annually invites to Porsche Night. From Mark Webber to Patrick Dempsey, from Richy Müller to Walter Röhrl, from Wolfgang Porsche to Helmut Eggert and Hans-Peter Schützinger, from Hans-Joachim Stuck to Richard Lietz: they have all been to the Ennstal in Porsches in recent years, the latter two piloting their two Le Mans-winning cars, a 1985 Porsche 962 and a Porsche 911 RSR 19 of the latest design, through Gröbming for the 30th edition.
A fitting conclusion is brought by Ennstal-Classic co-founder Helmut Zwickl, who this year was on duty as race director at the Racecar Trophy, and puts into words a nucleus, the heart of the Ennstal-Classic, which was already valid in 1993 and which in 2022 perhaps insists on validity more urgently than ever before: “We are advocates of pure, sporty motoring without editing changes and computer aids. We are not a snorter’s exit, no mathematics school work and no skill competition. A 50 km/h cut generally applies, which must be maintained to the hundredth of a second in the special stages between secretly positioned light barriers.” And: “The Ennstal-Classic explores the limits of what is feasible with the cars of the past on the roads of today. The brand diversity should be characterized by special cars that set standards in technology and sport in their day and are cult objects today.”