For the eighth time the Latvian capital hosted the annual historic car exhibition “Riga Retro 2013”. This year it was sacred to the memory of Viktors Kulbergs (1948-2013) who was a long-lived director of Latvian Antique Automobile Club (AAK) and the founder of Riga Motormuseum. Every year this event changes: from preparation to demonstration of trucks, motorcycles and various antique technical in one year to only a car exhibition for the second year. This year, on August 17, the event that took place was not similar to those already held. Due solely to the fact that not everyone was able to register to the event, but only those invited by an authoritative organisers’ commission from Riga Motormuseum and Latvia Antique Automobile Club (AAK). Such a decision adopted by the organizers to show Riga townspeople and their guests the rarer and more diverse vehicles, and to prevent them from popular, in large series and still produced, everyday used car dominance. It was impossible to figure out how many invitations have been designed to Lithuanians, but the event was joined just by three cars from Lithuania: BMW 327, made in 1939 (Arūnas Adomaitis – Lithuania Classic car club), militia Volga Gaz21, made in 1967 (Dalius Linkevičius – Antique vehicles club “Klasika”) and Mercury Comet, made in 1964 (Egidijus Einoris – Antique vehicles club “Klasika”).Estonia was represented by five historic cars, Finland – three. According to the exhibition organizers the event involved 104 cars, which were divided into three groups: antique cars (manufactured before 1945), classic cars (since 1945) and Soviet cars.
As Riga Motormuseum building is currently under reconstruction, registration of participants was in Bikernieki sports complex database. In fact, from 9 am to 11 pm registration time and aligning of the parade in Bikernieki race track slightly lengthen out. Well that all these inconveniences were compensated by smooth antique car column’s movement along the main streets of Riga, a great police work and warm surrounding attention. From 12 to 15 pm the antique vehicle exhibition was a part of the Riga City Festival and attracted crowds of spectators to the central Riga Street – 11th November Quay (11th Novembra krastmala). The host of the event interviewed each of the participants and those conversations, the information about the owner and his car could be heard and seen on the street giant screens. Not far from there, in one of the waterfront cafes, the participants were served hearty lunch.
After the exhibition, the historical vehicles again sped through the streets of central Riga, turned towards the suburb of the capital settled “Brīvdabas muzejs” fishing village. This is the Latvian Ethnographic Open-Air Museum, reminds of our Lithuanian Rumšiškės. Here, in the fishing village dreaming on the shores of lake, the get-together party of “Riga Retro 2013” participants took place.
After the stroll through the museum and dinner, the evening began by sacring the memory of Viktors Kulbergs and presentation of a book “Neiespējamā misija”. Viktors Kulbergs (1948-2013) – an engineer, restorer of antique machinery, in 1972 united all of Latvia’s antique vehicles enthusiasts and founded the Antique Automobile Club (AAK), which director was up in 1990. With his initiative and hard work in 1989, was built and opened Riga Motor Museum (Rigas Motormuzejs). After the presentation of Kulbergs’ book “Neiespējamā misija” there was presented another book “Spēkratu vizītkarte”. This is a common coauthors collective work on the first motor vehicles and their registration in the territory of Latvia. This was followed by awarding of participants. The oldest car license, as well as the recently held club “Klasika” event “Biržai 2013”, won Oldsmobile 30A, made in 1923 (owner Alfredas Zamockis) . Arunas Adomaitis, driver of the BMW 327 arrived from Vilnius and was awarded as the farthest participant. The Soviet militia crew of Dalius Linkevičius family was awarded for elegance and beauty. Celebration continued until dusk. Some listened to the „live“ performance of music, enjoying drinks and snacks, while others chatted with each other, shared their experiences and impressions of celebrations.
Dainius Nagelė photos