Four historic models, four gentlemen drivers and four unmissable episodes for all classic Alfa Romeo fans: the newly released web series is set amidst the enchanting scenery of the Holy Land 1000 Tour, the Israeli rally that encapsulates the essence of Alfa Romeo passion.
The Holy Land 1000 Tour is a dream rally—some say the most enthralling in the world—dedicated to pre-1965 sports and race cars.
The six-day race is a 1000-mile Grand Tour that mingles history with the natural beauty of Israel, visiting locations that are equally enchanting and diverse in their culture, climate and topography. It departs from the Mediterranean coastal city of Tel Aviv, crosses the spectacular Negev desert and the snow caps of the Golan Heights, skirts the Dead Sea and visits the city of Eilat on the Red Sea, before circling the Sea of Galilee and concluding back in Tel Aviv.
Despite being a very young event, created in 2015, this year the Holy Land 1000 Tour attracted 77 teams from all over the world. Among them were four die-hard Alfa aficionados: Ven Fonte, behind the wheel of his 1933 Alfa Romeo 6C 1750 Gran Sport, Roni Finkler, owner of a 1969 Alfa Romeo Giulia 1300 TI, Roger Cassin on board a 1954 Alfa Romeo 1900 CSS and Haim Cohen, with his 1965 Alfa Romeo Giulia GTC.
The "Timeless Passion" web series, conceived by Shelly Shpilman Yar and Hanni Itzhaki, was created out of the desire to tell their stories. In four episodes, each dedicated to a different model and its owner, we follow the adventures of four superlative Alfa Romeos made in different eras, discovering the passion of four genuine connoisseurs of classic cars and sharing their exhilaration as they take on the Holy Land 1000 Tour.
From childhood anecdotes to memories of their first car, from passion for mechanics and design to the strong emotional bond that each owner has with his vehicle: the recurring element in all the stories is a visceral connection with Alfa Romeo.
"I don’t think it's something you can control: some people like playing piano, some people like to go boating, my passion is cars."
The words of Ven Fonte, one of the four protagonists of "Timeless Passion", perfectly epitomise that emotional bond and attitude that distinguishes Alfa aficionados around the world. As for how the passion first develops and where it takes you, that is a story that is always different and fascinating.
Roni Finkler owes his passion to his father. When he was 13 years old, he returned home with a car that he had bought in the nearby village, consequently grounding himself for a month as punishment. But over time, his father understood that his son’s passion for cars was stronger than he had reckoned with, so he bought Roni an Alfasud for his 18th birthday. The Holy Land 1000 Tour has not only been lots of fun, it has also been a real eye-opener for Roni: "I’ve found out that I'm not the only crazy person who loves classic cars. And there are some really exceptional models here."
By contrast, Roger Cassin has always enjoyed getting his hands on engines and touching the mechanical parts, but now that he has so many models to take care of, he has discovered that his real passion is driving. Especially when it comes to historical competitions.
"What I love best is having the steering wheel in my hands and feeling the pedals under my feet, so now I leave all the fastening of nuts and bolts to someone else."
Haim Cohen claims that his Alfa Romeo is really a time machine, one that can take people back to the days when they were children and dreamed about cars like those participating in the Holy Land 1000 Tour.
"Gripping the steering wheel of a vintage car reminds me of when I was 22 or 23 years old. I was already driving Alfa Romeos and I was so into these cars! Now here I am, 30 years later, with the same stupid smile on my face."
"Timeless Passion" is a sincere and original story that portrays the past in terms of historic cars, the present in terms of the enthusiasts who own them, and the future in terms of their hopes of passing on the passion to the next generation, as Haim suggests: "I would like my children to grow fond of my Alfa Romeo. I hope that they keep this car and always remember that this was their father's car. That would mean a lot to me."
Video photographer credit - Roee Shalti
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