Anello del Paradiso, the ultimate in old style elegance

The Anello del Paradiso – Memorial Gian Luigi Saccardo gathering took place on Saturday and Sunday 1 and 2 October 2022, dedicated to cars built before 1945 and organized by the Historic Club Schio. The event was held along the magnificent foothills roads that connect Malo, Marostica, Bassano del Grappa and Schio, always accompanied by an enviable climate, not only in terms of weather but also in terms of public appreciation.

All motor enthusiasts remember Gian Lugi Saccardo, a pioneer of collecting and organizer, already seventy years ago, of the first vintage car rallies, often on mountain routes in the Vicenza area. He thus allowed us to admire the rarity and magical beauty of the vehicles built by our ancestors, cars that were still able to carry out the task of transporting people and things despite their age.

This year, more than 25 cars from all over Italy, met in Malo to then stretch the mechanics through a hilly path up to Marostica with the display of vehicles in the square of the Scacchi. The participants then visited the Lower Castle and the attached museum.

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In the afternoon the vehicles headed to Bassano del Grappa where, parked in the magnificent setting of Piazza Libertà, they were able to be admired by a very large audience, while the participants visited the famous Ponte degli Alpini and the Nardini grappery – the oldest distillery of Italy. Before dark, the cars then returned to Malo, after a brief stop in Marano Vicentino.

On Sunday morning Schio became the hub of the rally: the cars reached the historic center and in Piazza Rossi the Agritour association honored the crews with local products; then, exhibiting the cars at the Lanerossi High Factory – splendid industrial archeology -, the participants visited the Jacquard Garden.

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The procession of cars then traveled in the opposite direction through the historic center and, in Piazza Rossi, these jewels of the ancient technique were presented to the public. A short journey then took them to Villa Rossi, welcome guests of Maria Teresa and Alessandro Rossi, president of the Historic Club Schio, for a convivial aperitif and the awards ceremony for the brave participants (believe: it is absolutely not easy to drive these vehicles!).

Two little goodies. The first: the oldest car in Schio, the Isotta Fraschini FENC from 1908 – still owned by the Saccardo family – was a special guest in Villa Rossi making a fine show of itself, especially after being set in motion, further thrilling the participants. The second: Maria Teresa Rossi gave the Historic Club Schio, as a sign of esteem and affection, a precious model of Ferrari Testarossa spider made by Pocher of Turin in scale 1: 8, to whose realization of all the drawings and molds she collaborated, thirty years ago, the president himself.

Small parenthesis on vehicles that featured incredible polished bodies and interiors, as well as engines and transmissions that “ran” better than Swiss watches: the brands present were varied (in strict alphabetical order), namely Alfa Romeo, Bugatti, Citroen, Fiat, Ford, Isotta Fraschini, Lanchester, Lancia, Packard, Renault, Simca… truly an enchanting self-propelled museum on four wheels.

Lunch at the K-Farm of Fondo Muri was the farewell after two fantastic days of good weather and visits to some of the most evocative places in the Vicenza area, with a meeting that took place in the wake of continuity traced by Gian Lugi Saccardo, thus that the participants, now defined as “The Fellowship of the Ring”, have already asked for information about the 2023 edition!

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TopClassico | Registrazione del Tribunale di Milano n. 25 del 9.02.2021
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