Two weekends ago, there were 10 vintage Alfa Romeo convertibles lined up at a rest stop near the Santiam Pass in Oregon. Cumulatively, they represented over 400 years of driving.

Each year in April, the Alfa Romeo Club of Oregon puts on the “Old Spider Tour” to celebrate Alfa convertibles built prior to 1966. This year was the 46th.

It is also a tribute to club founder Bob McGill and his wife Margaret.

The date more or less coincides with the day Bob bought his first Alfa Romeo, a baby blue 750-series Giulietta Spider Normale from Rambo Motors, the local dealer. That car, under different ownership, is still part of the club here.

Coincidentally, Bob was also my first editor. One of the duties of the club president when I was elected was to write a column for the local newsletter, “AlfaBits.” He was a stern editor, and was unhappy when I wrote about my 250-cc Ducati motorcycle: “This is an Alfa newsletter, remember that please.”

SCM took two Alfa Spiders on the tour. My daughter Alexandra and her husband Ross drove our 1991 S4, and SCMer (and former Berlina owner) Brad Miller was behind the wheel of our 1965 Giulia Spider Veloce. That car hadn’t been driven for more than a few miles since the 2021 SCM 1000. I’ve owned it for 40 years, and it was good to be riding in it again.

To get the cars staged, I drove the S4 to the SCM Batcave, then swapped it for the GSV. While the cars are wildly different in many ways, in a fundamental manner they are both Alfas. There’s a DNA that runs through all Alfas that is unmistakable.

I came away from the tour pleased that I had shared my passion for Alfas with my family, and equally pleased at how competently Brad had driven the GSV. It does love revving up to 5,500 rpm.

Whether a 1965 or a 1991, these both seem like “real” Alfas to me.

Do you agree? 

One Comment

  1. Henry S. Knight, Jr.

    I was driving through Tuscany several years and thought I caught a glimpse of a red spirts car in a raised parking area to my left. I turned around and drove into the parking lot. I was presented with a scene of about 27 Ferraris parked arrow nd the perimeter of the lot, awaiting their day-renters to pick them up for a driving tour of Tuscany. The tour company is named Red Travel for anyone who might want to drop a few Grand for a day’s fun. I drooled on the cars for a little while and reluctantly continues on my way.

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