A small but select group gathered at the Sunset Cafe in Los Altos for the 4.30 pm start to the August Drive. It was good to welcome back Felipe and Amalia and also some guests who accompanied Ian and Carol and Neil and Tonia. The route took us via Los Montesinos, Montebello, Pedrera and Hurchillo before a stop at La Tetería de Cueva in Jacarilla. The architecture here was fascinating and well worth a visit, especially if you were a Flintstones fan in a former life. After the refreshments we departed for the return leg via San Miguel and Campoamor and then arrived at Restaurante Los Cucalos where the meal was excellent and the service was swift and entertaining.
JULY DRIVE TO ONIL MAZE
Our July drive on Wednesday the 14th, Bastille Day, was scheduled for one of the hottest periods in recent times but Ian must have had divine inspiration or luck on his side as he took us up into the hills to the cool air and shady trees of Casa Tapena near Onil. We gathered at our new spiritual Ace Cafe home at Nonduermas and headed off to Crevilllente, Novelda and Agost, stopping for a coffee and comfort break at Casa Miguel (formerly Don Camino). Lovely roads so far but things could only get better as we left Agost and took the CV827 to Castalla and then the CV 802 to Onil. Smooth, winding roads with great scenery and hardly another car or bicycle to be seen. On arrival at Casa Tapena some brave souls ventured into the labarinta (maze) and when we left three hours later we could still hear the cries for help. Oh well! The picnic area was shaded by tall trees and the cool mountain breeze was very welcome. All in all a great day out and enjoyed by all who took part. We now look forward to Terry’s evening drive in August.
A shorter than normal drive (by Johnny’s standards anyway) greeted the seventeen cars which gathered at Meroil, Callosa and departed at 11 pm. We wound our way through Benferri, La Murada, Fortuna and Abanilla before crossing over the Sierra de Abanilla on the RM-A9 road which afforded wonderful views of the surrounding countryside, particularly on this, the clearest of days. We then passed through the metropolis of Barbarroja before arriving in Hondón for lunch where the food was acceptable but where the service was somewhat lacking. I dare say there are still some people sitting patiently waiting for postres. We now look forward to Ian’s drive on July 14th. Please note this drive will be on a Wednesday, bring a picnic and you will be guaranteed an AMAZING day.
As you can see from Nathan’s letter to members the COM have held a meeting and there was quite a lot to be done considering the fact that, due to Covid, we have not been able to hold meetings for some six months or so. When planning future events there was much more to be considered than the usual date, time, place etc. Restrictions had to be kept in mind, locations where social distancing could be respected, meeting/coffee/lunch venues and suchlike and we would like to think that we put some effort into getting it right and providing the members with a varied and interesting set of drives over the summer months. Of course we cannot please everybody and already we have received a complaint about one of the proposed drives. All I can say (as the person who suggested the drive in question) is that there was a lot to be considered such as familiarity with the route and the location of the overnight stay in order to cut down on recce work etc. and also an issue regarding the deposit money for the Ibiza trip which is being held by the travel agent. While we accept that members may have legitimate complaints from time to time my belief is that the club would be better served if those people would join us on the COM and put their valuable suggestions to a forum where action could then be taken for the benefit of the membership as a whole.
A wonderful turn-out of 18 cars, including two new members, celebrated the return of the club to the roads of the Costa Blanca after a six month lay-off due to the Covid restrictions. We assembled at the BP near Zoco Market and travelled via Formentera and San Fulgencio to the fabulous roads around the Parc Natural del Fondo where we enjoyed a picnic, a chat and, for some, a walk around the wildlife park. Back on board again and onward via San Felipe Neri, Catral, Dolores and Benijofar to the finish in San Miguel. A slightly different drive to what we might usually expect but one that was enjoyed by everyone and we now look forward to another drive in June hosted by Mr Halvorsen.
Our December/Christmas drive was organised by Johnny and, as usual, he did not let us down. Sixteen cars made it to the start line and It was great to welcome Dafydd’s 1969 E-Type to the club and to welcome back old friend Mick Whybrow in the ex-Dafydd XK8. What seemed like a fairly mild beginning while we distributed calendars at two locations soon became “interesting” as we visited the aerodromo de Mutxamel and then took the CV819 to meet the Tibi-Xixona road. This was a wonderful drive although some passengers were a little squeamish at the prospect of falling off the edge of the precarious mountain road. We all made it safely to the CV810 and then back to El Cortijo in Formentera where we were faced with a mountain of a different kind, a mountain of food. Those with doggie bags were well satisfied and everyone received a Christmas gift in the form of booze, biscuits and chocs. Happy Christmas and a safe and trouble free 2021 to all our members.
PRESS COVERAGE OF CLUB EVENTS
Richard and Terry have combined forces to get some coverage of club events in the local press. So far we have seen the results in The Costa Blanca News, The Weekly Post and The Leader. Let us know if you spotted any club related news in any other publications. Also if you have purchased a car, changed a car, modified a car or done anything car related (bank robberies don’t count) let us know and we will put it on the club website and/or the facebook page.
NOVEMBER DRIVE; DEJA VU ALL OVER AGAIN
Our November drive was a lovely mix of new roads and parts of some old favourite drives with a clever loop system to bring you round in circles so hence the Deja Vu title. We started (well, most of us Johnny) in Pilar de la Horadada and the route took us to San Miguel, Rebate, Jacarilla, Bigastro, Hurchillo, Orihuela, Molins and back via Torremendo to lunch at San Marino (not the one in Italy but the one in Campoverde) where we tucked into a herd of ducks. Clear blue skies all day long and quiet country roads gave us a great day out and our thanks to Ian and Carol Smith for putting it all together. Alan brought along his MX5 for it’s first club outing and Ian had the SLK’s roof up all day because he had to. Den had the Oxford on the doorhandles as usual (he blames the crossplies) and Frans has made a purchase which we may see in December and nice to see Rolf in the big Merc.
Another very successful post-lockdown drive with 17 cars appearing in Formentera for a drive which would take us down to the coast at La Marina and then to Santa Pola where we had two short stops to take in the views of Tabarca Island and visit the little chapel of Ermita de la Virgen del Rosario under the shadow of the cliffs at Gran Alacant. Onward then via Arenals, Balares, Dolores and Daya Vieja to lunch at Paco’s Restaurant. Our thanks to Team Sawkins for organising the day and we look forward (Covid permitting) to next month’s drive to the Jalón Valley.
What a lovely drive Johnny gave us for our first drive out in a very long time, 35 members met in Formentera and then set out via canals, farmland, fruit farms an aqueduct and a few roads (typical Halvorsan drive). We visited Rafal , Cox, Albatera before the climb to Hondon and a very nice lunch at the Tipsy Terrace. After the lunch Nathan spoke of our friends Bengt and Karl who will be missed by all club members. Many thanks to Johnny & Rachael for organising such a wonderful day and we look forward to Terry’s drive in October with great anticipation.
We congregated in Callosa with a few more cars joining in along the way and 12 cars set off in the early morning fog which spoiled the views of the first half of the drive but didn’t lessen the enjoyment of the route via Elche, the suburbs of Alicante, San Vincente, Agost and Alcoi. At the coffee halt some cars had gone missing but caught up later on as we headed into the mountains and over some fabulous roads (just wide enough for Dafydd’s Rolls Royce) to our destination, the Restaurant Roselada in Monovar. Now that the sun had come out the views were spectacular as you can see from Chris’s excellent video (see link https://youtu.be/KB2WilitJng) and everyone enjoyed the day out and the wonderful meal.
This was another do we or don’t we drive, as the weather once again threatened to put the kybosh on the day, but in true Phoenix spirit 30 people gathered at the old Meroil J733 and set off for our drive, and we had a very scenic drive, pleasant coffee stop and a little shopping in the pottery emporium, all be it with one eye on the very menacing clouds forming, the wind was getting a little stronger and b**** freezing. We then set off for lunch at Las Palmaras Crevillente, where we had the side dining room all to ourselves and enjoyed an excellent lunch, a really lovely end to the day organized by Sue & Richard.
Our AGM was held at El Prado San Miguel It was voted unanimously to adjust fees to 20e per person thus making single member fee 20e Joint member 40e The voting in of COM : President: Nathan Hall – Secretary: Richard O Rourke- Treasurer: Lesley Hall – Vocales: Johnny Halverson, Ian Smith , Terry Sawkins . Many thanks to all in attendance
Once again we were looked after very well by the Cosecha staff , this time we had an evening event with entertainment for a change and I think this was welcomed by most. All members that were at the meal were treated to our now famous Calendar. Many thanks to Lesley for booking, collecting menu choices, and collecting money for all this to run smoothly. (Calendars for members not at the meal are available at the monthly ACE)
We met at the Lo Monte Hotel, hence the name of the drive, and Richard’s half took us via El Mirador and Avileses to the coffee halt at Venta El Garruchal in the hills south of Murcia. After viewing the scenery Ian took over and led us around Murcia city and then via Fortuna to the lunch stop at Los Molinicos. 38 members enjoyed a lovely drive in warm sunshine.
We had 16 members and 2 guests for our golf day and what a lovely day we had for it, very warm for this time of year. We were set of in groups of 3 or 4 and we soon found who had a flair for this golfing lark, there was lots of laughing and everyone had a great time. The winner was Jim (guest) 2nd Terry Sawkins 3rd Barbara Fullalove. Well done to all the Golfers.