Anyway the Amilcar made it, though the magneto gave some trouble due to the rain. Luckily we had a technical team following us for such circumstances. Mike Kastrop and Frido Roetgerink were following us in the van of Lammertink, fully prepared for anything that might happen…
Next up Sander Drijber and Fons Aarents were ready to start with the Salmson 2300 sport. Comfortable and dry at least, and enough horse power to keep up the speed. Myself, I left the starting line with Djuri Jambor in the Alpine A106, which had done the race twice before and also… Continue reading
I admit… the last weeks of Februari were nerve-shattering. Would we be allowed to participate or not? Although I was fairly certain about my Alpine 106, which had already taken part in the Mille Miglia twice before, I had dared this time to enter two more cars of mine, which, admittedly, would be driven by friends. These were an Amilcar CGSS from 1927 and Salmson 2300 Sport from 1956. So, a French party. We were overwhelmed when we heard that all three cars had been accepted. But that’s where things really begin!
Everyone who thinks that the Mille Miglia is a luxury tour through Italy will be deceived. You really need to put your foot down those 4 days, from early in the morning until late at night. And all this… Continue reading
As I told before, sadly I didn’t make it to follow the Mille Milgia this year, but some friends did! Here is a magnificent photo report made by Wim Haze. I am sure this slide show will tell you more then thousand words, though the follow up report of the Mille Miglia is really impressive too! One of the participants who brought 3 of his French bolides did owe me something, so he… Continue reading
First of all let me tell you that I had planned to follow the Mille Miglia. Sadly my BMW spent those wonderful days at the dealers because of a delay with the delivery of a new clutch/flywheel. Not surprising that after more than 350.000 km the flywheel needed a replacement. But soon I will post loads of wonderful photos and possibly even a nice report of the 2016 Mille Miglia, with the help of a friend who participated. I lend him a wheel-nut from my CGS, which allowed him to participate with his Amilcar CGSs plus a bit of extra luck, so he owes me something now…
But let’s get back to Amillion. After several months I get to know my CGS better bit by bit, and this is a nice adventure. Of course Amillion had by far not… Continue reading
In any Ferrarist’s discussion there is one question that always recurs: “which model would you chose if you were a billionnaire?”
Most of us will reply that the 250 GTO is the one, others will say that the 250 Testa Rossa or the 250 California or the legendary 330 P4 are for sure the perfect cars to match the ideal. I noticed that few (even among the real Ferrarists) will chose the 335S… Continue reading
Driving 100 miles thru Amsterdam and surroundings at midnight with an out of date roadbook (on purpose)… can it get any better? Most of us petrol heads will probably have the Mille Miglia on their bucket list, if not already completed! Please add this 100MOA rally to your list as well, it is something you just have to experience once or more in your lifetime.
Last Sunday/Monday was THE day! And I can ensure you it isn’t about chilling in the sun… Although it was not cold at all and no snow whatsoever, YEAH! I was probably one of the few who was happy with a normal view without white flakes all over.
Sadly Amillion, my Amilcar CGS, wasn’t ready yet to perform, so I had to… Continue reading
A number of articles ago, CHB presented a special one-off concept car for those who still have hidden socks with cash. On December 10th RM Sotheby’s held their NYC Driven by Disruption auction. Our NYC correspondent Walter Jamieson was present and noted down for you the hammer prices of his favorites, which he dealt with in a previous article about great dashboards.
The following prices are… Continue reading
Without any warning the car spun and there was just time to think what a desolated part of Italy in which to crash, when I realised that we had almost stopped in our own length and were sliding gently into the ditch to land with a crunch that dented the tail. “This is all right,” I thought, “we can probably push it out of this one,” and I was about to start getting out when Moss selected bottom gear and we drove out – lucky indeed! Before we could point the car in the right direction we had to make two reverses and as we accelerated away down the mountainside. I fiddled about putting the safety catch back on the reverse position of the gear-gate, while we poked our tongues out at each other in mutual derision.
At the Siena control we had no idea of whether we were still leading or not, but Moss was quite certain that Taruffi would have had to have worked extremely hard to catch him, for he had put all he knew into that last part of the course, he told me afterwards. Never relaxing for an instant he continued to drive the most superb race of his career, twirling the steering wheel this way and that, controlling slides with delicateness of throttle that was fairy-like … Continue reading
Just beyond the control were a row of pits and there was 723, Castellotti’s Ferrari, having some tyre changes, which was not surprising in view of the way he had been driving. With a scream of “Castellotti!”, Moss accelerated hard round the next corner and we twisted our way through the streets of Ravenna, nearly collecting an archway in the process, and then out on the fast winding road to Forlì. Our time to Ravenna had been well above the old record but Castellotti had got there before us and we had no idea how Taruffi and the others behind us were doing. Now Moss continued the pace with renewed vigour and we went through Forlì, waving to the garage that salvaged the SL we crashed in practice, down the fast winding road to Rimini, with another wave to the Alfa Romeo service station that looked after the SLR that broke its engine. I couldn’t help thinking that we had certainly left our mark round the course during practice … Continue reading
A week before the event we went to Stuttgart to try out the actual car we were using in the race, and several laps of the fast Hockenheim circuit convinced us that we had a truly magnificent 3-litre sports car under us, the eight-cylinder fuel-injection engine giving well over 290 bhp on normal pump petrol, and the car geared to give a maximum of 170 mph at the peak revolutions of 7,500 rpm, though we were given no ultimate limit, should the car wind itself over this downhill. On this SLR the seats were made to measure for us, being cut-and-shut just like a tailor would make a suit, while every detail in the cockpit received our personal attention, and anything was altered to our desire without question. When we finally left the racing department at 5 pm on Tuesday, April 26th, we had the pleasant feeling that we had just left an organization that knew no limit to the trouble they would go to in order that we might start the Mille Miglia with everything on our side.
Next day we flew to Brescia and when we went round to the garage in the evening the cars were already there, having been driven down in the fast racing lorries overnight. We were now satisfied with almost everything we could think about; we had practised wheel-changing over and over again, in case we had tyre trouble, and I would add that we impressed the Mercedes-Benz mechanics … Continue reading
On May 1st motor-racing history was made, for Stirling Moss won the 1,000-mille Mille Miglia, the first time in 22 years that this has been achieved by a British driver, and I had this great privilege of sitting beside him throughout this epic drive.
But let us go back to the beginning, for this win was not a fluke on the spur of the moment, it was the result of weeks, even months, of preparation and planning.
My enthusiasm for the Mille Miglia race goes back many years, among the reasons being the fact that it is permissible to carry a passenger. This event is for all types of road-going cars, from family saloons to Grand Prix type racing/sports cars, and when I had my first taste of the lure of the Mille Miglia as a competitor last year, with Abecassis in the HWM, I soon set about making plans for the 1955 event … Continue reading