The meeting began on Friday with a “thunderstorm” in the form of Ulli's roaring 900 convertible: during his 300 km journey from Bad Oeynhausen there was a “smooth breakthrough” in the exhaust pipe in front of the silencer.
Good advice or quick help was expensive on Friday afternoon.
We put out our feelers in the direction of the local youngtimer scene and, after forwarding them twice, ended up with a small auto mechanic in Fridritt, who agreed to take on the subject. So, with Formula 1 sound, drove 15 km to the workshop (passers-by sometimes put their thumbs up) and there handed the 900 into the hands of Stefan, who had a Saab on the lift for the first time (otherwise more like a BMW affine) - but exhaust is exhaust!
The right piece of pipe and the right place were found, it was sawed and welded, after all, this part of the exhaust was so well repaired that Ulli will have rest - in the truest sense of the word - for the next 20 years.
So we could still spend the evening in a friendly get-together.
The exit was of course also subject to the Corona rules, which were then in Bavaria: Only groups of a maximum of ten people are allowed in public space. On this basis, I agreed a hygiene concept with the health department and limited the number of participants to 20 people (2 groups) from the outset.
We would have reached this number if there hadn't been two rejections shortly beforehand, both due to illness. Therefore I would like to take this opportunity to wish all the best to Christina from Dautphetal and Susanne's husband from Wächtersbach, who unfortunately could not come.
I had also asked participants from the previous year's trip and had some surprises: A then ardent Saab fan had meanwhile sold his 9-3 Turbo X, the convertibles of two other participants were offered for sale on the Internet two weeks before the trip, which also included them eliminated as a participant.
Well, nothing is as constant as change.
Finally, on Saturday 9 vehicles with 14 participants came to the agreed meeting point in Ostheim vdRhön. There were nice group photos here.
Since 5 of the 9 vehicles were convertibles, they were able to head for the first destination in the best possible weather: Our lunch, which we ate in the restaurant on the Lichtenburg on the terrace.
The actual journey then followed and led us on the Bavarian side along the former inner-German border into Thuringia, here then the driveway to the parking lot of the 813 m high “Ellenbogen” with its striking observation tower “Noahs Segel”.
Back at the parking lot, there was a small award ceremony.
Actually, I wanted to award a "classic" award for the longest journey and the oldest vehicle, but then I would have had to shower Ulli with prizes because he had the longest journey, the oldest vehicle, the best sound (at least until Friday afternoon) and the vehicle with the fewest gears (3-speed automatic transmission). So I rescheduled without further ado, as there was still an “honorary prize” to be awarded.
Ulli received a bottle of Pax-Bräu and a Rhön calendar for the longest journey.
Konrad received a bottle of Pax-Bräu for the second oldest vehicle (900 year 1992).
Tim received another honorary award because it was a real surprise for the participants (when registering, I don't know who is coming): Tim is 19 years old and after passing his driver's license he bought a Saab as the first car: one 9-3 (BJ 1998) with a proud 310.000 km and beautiful 185 hp - in top condition.
That deserved a lot of recognition and Tim received a giant bar of Marabou chocolate and a small contribution for petrol money, after all, he came from near Heilbronn.
Then the journey continued, with a wonderful view of the entire Hessian Rhön, into Hesse and then over the Hochrhön Strasse (a "must" when driving through the Rhön) back to Bavaria, where we held the event over coffee at the Thuringian hut and let the cake fade away.
Finally, I would like to thank Gunther from Krombach, who captured the entire tour with his good camera.
I'm already looking forward to a meeting next year, the route is already roughly planned!
Text and images: Thomas Zecher