Italians have a few distinguishing characteristics coursing through their veins. Innate charm. An appreciation of good food. Style. And an unabashed attraction to race cars.
Love of racing is what “drove” people to take part in the Mille Miglia, an open-road endurance 1000-mile race which took place in Italy from 1927 to 1957.
Sadly, the race was suspended because of two fatal accidents in the 1950s. Since 1977, the “Mille Miglia” has become a regularity race for classic and vintage cars, with drivers from around the world. Participation is exclusive, expensive, and limited to cars produced no later than 1957, which had attended (or were registered to) the original race. The route has remained the same: Brescia-Rome round trip.
This year we had the honor of hosting a “pit stop” in Senigallia. Onlookers were slack jawed as they wondered how those 400+ antique race cars were able to make it all 1000 miles, in four days no less. And how the drivers and the co-pilots were able to fit in the tiny seats!
As they parked their cars in front of the famous Rotonda a Mare, shouting at people to kindly and quickly move because back in the 1930s brakes aren’t what they are now, we all took in the sight of satisfied drivers. And not just because they had made it in one piece. Because they were off to a catered lunch in the Rotonda (from what I hear, it was delicious)!
Congratulations to winners Juan Tonconogy and Guillermo Berisso, with their 1927 Bugatti T 40 (see attached image). Second place went to Brescia’s own Andrea Vesco and Andrea Guerini in their 1930 FIAT 514 MM. In third place Ezio Martino Salviato and Caterina Moglia, crossing the finish line in their 1928 Bugatti T 40.
For more information about the history of Mille Miglia..)