The legendary Mille Miglia race, from Brescia to Rome and back, has a handful of anniversaries to remember this year.
Firstly, the 90th anniversary of its first edition, held on March 26th and 27th, 1927.
Secondly, it’s 70 years from resuming the competition after the Second World War, on June 22nd, 1947, after a five-year interruption from 1941 to 1946. That year, the Alfa Romeo 8C 2900B coupé Touring driven by Clemente Biondetti won.
Thirdly, the tragic 1957: on May 12th, 60 years ago a terrible car accident took the lives of eleven people (two drivers and nine bystanders) and shut down the race forever.
Then, 40 years ago, the Mille Miglia came back as a regularity race for classic and vintage cars (produced no later than 1957).
In his autobiography “Le mie gioie terribili” (Mondadori, Milan 1962), Enzo Ferrari shared a wonderful memory of the race:
“The Mille Miglia has a wonderful history, and above all started a new era: the Mille Miglia created Italian cars and motoring; the Mille Miglia allowed us to create the Gran Turismo models we sell around the world today – and by ‘we’ I don’t mean just Ferrari.”
“When Italy was sanctioned, the Mille Miglia pushed us to produce our own fuel. The Mille Miglia has proved that road races bring decisive steps forward in technical progress, which is human progress.”
“I feel emotional whenever I speak of the Mille Miglia, because it is connected to long periods of my life. I was first a competitor and then an organizer for the brand I belonged to, Alfa Romeo; I lived it as a manufacturer, always admiring the race and its champions.”
“Indeed, the Mille Miglia was a race that not only made a crucial contribution to cars’ technical evolution, but also made champions emerge. No driver could consider his career complete without a victory in Brescia.”