In 1976 Alfa created the Alfetta Challenge Cup, a racing series based on showroom stock Alfettas competing in Class A of the SCCA National and Regional events across the country. The series was created after a disastrous fire aboard a transport ship, the Tarrantino which caught fire while at sea and damaged scores of new Alfettas. Many of the cars were only smoke damaged but were not saleable to the general public so Alfa chose to make them available to racers to compete in the Alfetta Challenge Cup Series with a purse of $35,000. I purchased two of the cars, an Alfetta sedan and an Alfetta GT and competed in the series traveling to 21 SCCA events in three months. I won 17 of those races and the Series championship and was presented with the Alfetta Challenge Cup at an awards presentation at the New York Trade Center in January of 1977 by the CEO of Alfa Romeo, C.V. Ronchetti. This championship was my first national title followed by two more SCCA National Championships and the IMSA Endurance Championship. Alfa Romeo continued to support SCCA racers driving Alfa Romeos for the next several years and I competed in SCCA Class B National competition until 1979 winning the 19 SCCA National races and the Southern Pacific Division National Championship 3 years in a row. Unfortunately Alfa discontinued its support of American sports car racing by the early 80s. With the introduction of the Gulia it would be wonderful and very appropriate if Alfa Romeo could renew its interest in the sport of auto racing. Of course back in 1976 a new Alfetta cost just a bit over $6000 . . . just 10% of today's cost. But if they did create something similar to the Alfetta Challenge Cup for the new Gulia I would be first in line to participate!
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