INTERNATIONAL 4x4 RALLY CITY of GRADISCA
8 December 2018
608 vehicles participants
The international 4x4 rally “Città di Gradisca” has always been the gathering of large numbers of participation and even in this 33rd edition the tradition has not been denied; 608 were the crews who peacefully invaded the city during the weekend of the Immaculate Conception for the classic off-road appointment of Mitteleuropa. The first crews have already arrived on the days of 6 and 7 December for registration and parking of 4x4 in the park of Piazza Centrale. A bit 'of rain in the night until the first light of dawn, then a timid sun came up and finally a tide of off-road vehicles coming from: Italy, Austria, Germany, Switzerland, Liechtenstein, Czech Republic, Croatia, Serbia, Hungary, Slovenija were ready to go; foreign crews now account for 38% of registered crews. The event started at 08.00 am after the city's mayor had officially started. The first vehicles to start were those of the main sponsors: Jeep, BFGoodrich, Mobil 1, Lubriservice; to follow the vehicles of the State Police, Fire Brigade, Civil Defense and the various 4x4 ambulances. Before leaving, the off-roaders were photographed at the start together with Miss Friuli Venezia Giulia 2018. Following the notes of the road book, the 4x4s after a few kilometers from the start separated with two possibilities: the tourist route and the classic route. The first was indicated for the SUV, covering an initially flat territory that only in the final part took the direction of the hills near the Slovenian border. The second road book is the most demanding one that traditionally is chosen by the majority of the crews; for most of the route, it commits the crews inside the gravel streams with different muddy points where the drivers can express their driving skills and the performance of their 4x4. In the middle of the itinerary the difficulties increase with "variations" that include the fords of the Natisone river and the Judrio stream, where a good driving ability of the pilot is required. After the long river crossing, the road book brought the participants to the "Collio" area, in the midst of vineyards and rather demanding mule tracks. At sunset all returned to Gradisca, not before having traveled some tortuous routes carved into the flood plain of the Isonzo river. As usual for the Gradisca meeting, there were several rest stops. Starting with the classic little break at the "Toretta" in Tapogliano and shortly after the "De Cecco" trattoria in Buttrio. Then, follow the refreshments at "Ronchi San Giuseppe" in Spessa di Cividale, "Al Granatiere" in Scriò di Dolegna del Collio and finally "Russiz Superiore" in Capriva del Friuli. At 7.00 pm, in the Bergamas theater hall, the awards ceremony closed off the off-road day. Winner of the rally, the most numerous guest club with 17 crews, the "Geländewagenfreunde" which was awarded the BFGoodrich trophy; "The Jokers" 4x4 won the Jeep Trophy with 9 crews while the Mobil1 Lubriservice trophy went to the Jumbo club. The youngest participants at the meeting were Luka Patrik from 2000 and Bais Lucio from '98. Dieter Thoeny and Giuseppe Terenziani were mentioned among the oldest. Heindrik Dannenberg from Duisburg (D) traveled 1128 kilometers to participate in the rally. Tiziana Muzzin participated with a female crew of 4 girls; a special quotation goes to the 10-month-old Davide, who has done all the way on board the 4x4 of his parents who came from Bolzano. For some participants, the weekend also offered a historical tour based on short off-road routes, guided tours to the Monument and the Museum of Redipuglia, as well as an enogastronomic stop at the Castelvecchio wine farm.
Official Sponsors: Jeep, BFGoodrich and Mobil 1; Partners: Lubriservice, Fiorese Group, Dentesano, Cassa Rurale Friuli Venezia Giulia, Euro4x4Parts, OFFROAD verlag, ZC4x4, Elicar; the Region of “Friuli Venezia Giulia”, Fondazione Carigo, Turismo FVG and finally the 28 Majors who permitted to crossed the beautiful pamorama’s. The event was organized by the "Off-road Off-road Isontino Off-Road Group". At the end of this 33rd edition with its 608 off-road vehicles, the total number of crews that from 1985 to today can say "in Gradisca there was me too" reached 18.098