Over the following years the event again became the International St. Moritz Automobile week as the
Bernina Gran Turismo is joined by the Kilomètre Lancé, a one-kilometre sprint at the local airport the
weekend before as well as the Motorsport Rendezvous, the exhibition of fine automobiles at the Kempinski
Hotel in St. Moritz that also serves as the base for the following GT.
Although we missed the airport event, we made it back to St. Moritz after the recent Passione Engadina for
another weekend at the “Top of the World” as St. Moritz likes to present itself.
Unfortunately, the Thursday morning did not offer good weather and so the cars were lined up in front of the
hotel in a rather dull mix of rain and clouds covering the surrounding mountains. Still the selection of cars
was very nice with some of the participants of the hill climb joined by static displayed cars. To mention is a
couple of Alfa Romeo by Zagato led by one of the ultra-rare TZ2, often referred as the “Baby-GTO” as well
as the Sprint Zagato Coda Tronca. Also very interesting was a duo of Jaguar, the famous XK120 Jabbeke
record car as driven by the late Norman Dewis and a D-Type. Early arrivals for the hill climb were the 2017
WTCC winning Volvo S60 of Thed Björk who drove the Cyan Volvo P1800 “restomod” with turbo charger in a
rather wild drifting style up the hill the following days. On the other end there were a few “survivors” of the
kilometer sprint like the yellow Abarth Fiat 500 Record Racer or the Morgan Plus 8 GTR.
On Thursday evening four of the cars including the Ford Mustang from the McQueen movie “Thomas Crown
Affair” were brought up the steep road to the alpine hut “El Paradiso” overlooking the mountains and the
valley with the St. Moritz Lake. With the dramatic change of the clouds in these heights this made some
good photo opportunities for the entrants arriving by shuttle to have their welcome dinner in a very familiar
Friday morning saw the check-in of the hill climbers at the hotel and so some of the cars from the display of
the previous day were joined by the arriving cars. Fortunately, the weather changed completely overnight
and the day could be enjoyed in rather sunny weather. The field was very mixed ranging from the already
mentioned Aston Martin with starting number 1, a duo of the very fast Morgan 3-wheeler, a Talbot-Lago
single seater as well as an Alfa Romeo 8C Monza and Bugatti T51 on the pre-war side to the rather wild
Lancia Stratos, Porsche RSR and even an Alfa Romeo 155 DTM racer of the post-war era. In addition, a
selection of classics like the touring cars of BMW 2002 or Alfa Romeo GTA, light sports racers like the
Porsche 550 Spyder of Maserati A6 GCS/53, Cobras and even a duo of Ford Galaxy could be seen on the
hill. Fortunately, the climb up the hill is not too long as the Galaxy might have run out of petrol else.
After the lunch in the hotel the cars made their way up to the Bernina Pass where they stayed for the
following days in a guarded garage, very convenient especially for those cars lacking a road registration.
After the cars were safely stored the evening saw the premiere of RM Sotheby´s in Switzerland with their
first St. Moritz auction. Naturally a lot of cars were from Swiss origin for tax reasons and the team of the
Canadian Auction House made a good debut with a total of 75% of the cars sold and a total of more than 16
million Swiss Francs.
Saturday was the first race day with 2 practice sessions before the lunch and two timed races in the
afternoon. After their descent towards Poschiavo the cars were lined up for the start at La Rösa at the
Easter side of the pass. From here the road leads up about 5.7 kilometers with well over 50 corners making
this a rather demanding race. Fortunately, today the road is in a perfect condition and the hillsides are well
prepared with guard rails compared to the adventurous conditions these roads had in the original period 90
years ago. In different age groups the cars were either racing for the fastest time or in regularity going after
the given index time.
Especially the first cars in the competition class were in full attack and the duel between Florian Feustel
and Daniele Perfetti on their Porsche 3.0 RSR were very entertaining. At the end it was Perfetti who bested
Feustel with only 15/100 of a second on the Saturday run winning overall. On the other end of the
competition the already mentioned Aston was the oldest car and needed 2 minutes more up the hill.