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A nice variety for you this week – Supercars at Geneva, Supercar GT racing from Australia, Graham Gauld reflects on rare sights and classic coincidences at motor shows, and we bring you a very special article on the brilliant Alfa 1900CSS Touring—a much underestimated classic now given its due. And, you can now subscribe to VeloceToday for a year without using PayPal – so do it, now!
Story and photos by the VeloceToday staff
To appreciate the Alfa 1900, the firm’s first new postwar car, we Americans need some historical perspective. It wasn’t built for us. It was built for Italians, and Italian conditions, both of which its designers understood completely. Except in towns, Italy had no speed limits, and every Italian tried to emulate Nuvolari or Farina when he got behind the wheel. He would push every gear to the redline, take every corner to the limit. He’d hurl the car over potholed mountain roads, brake at the last moment, but still expect to ride in comfort, and never to have the car fail him. He wanted it to be handsome, and spacious enough for his family. [Read more…] about Alfa 1900CSS: Italian Businessman’s Express
Story and photos by Graham Gauld
As most of you probably know there was a motor show in Geneva last week, where all the attention appeared to be on supercars with weird and wonderful aerodynamics; it all looked terribly serious. Editor Pete asked me if I was going to attend the show, but had to admit that it has been about twenty years since I attended the big salons of Geneva and Paris..
I knew that Pete will have plenty of photos of the Geneva event from other correspondents so wasn’t too worried. However, Pete’s comments reminded me of an interesting show I attended in 1999. It was organized by the well-known Italian collector Franco Lombardi in his home town of Genoa and I knew I had to be there. I was not disappointed! So to get you into the Motor Show mood let me tell you about three of the cars there. [Read more…] about Graham Gauld on Motor Shows
Story and photos by Graham Earl
A few years ago people in the know were predicting the end of the supercar. A visit to this year’s Geneva Salon would quickly disabuse anybody of such pessimistic thoughts, because the overriding feeling I came away with is that the supercar is King. And it isn’t just the obvious traditional makers of these types of cars who are flaunting their wares to an eager marketplace, but an ever increasing clique of niche manufacturers jumping on the bandwagon and offering ultra expensive, ultra exclusive fodder for those with deep enough pockets. Looking at the many options available, there is clearly an awful lot of people with pockets deep enough to sustain such a growth in this market sector.
Manufacturers are increasingly aiming for the money-is-no-object customers, so what we get to see is an ever wider range of jaw dropping, highly impractical but utterly sensational motorcars. [Read more…] about Geneva Auto Show 2017
Story and Photos by Vince Johnson
Italians at the Clipsal 500, South Australia, 2-5 March 2017
It was up to the Lamborghinis to fly the flag for Italy in the first round of the Australian GT Championship on the Adelaide street circuit during the Clipsal 500 V8 Supercars weekend. Last year’s sole Ferrari, Brenton Griguol’s 430GT3, had been replaced by his Reiter-engineered Lamborghini Gallardo R-EX, joining six others that had been breathed on by the Bavarian company. With the Huracan of Jim Manolios/Dean Canto, Sant’Agata cars were the most numerous in the 26-car field. [Read more…] about Australia’s Clipsal 500: Lamborghini Rising
Much of this edition of VeloceToday is devoted to John Surtees, who passed away March 10 at the age of 83. Surtees touched our lives and showed us guts, determination and strength in the face of immense tragedies and triumphs. Graham Gauld, Jim Sitz, Hugues Vanhoolandt and Jonathan Sharp do the Tribute while the Editor re-publishes an exclusive interview with Surtees from 2001. Also, Jonathan Sharp covers the London Show, and we present 1958 Lancia trucks!
Gauld, Sitz, Sharp and Vanhoolandt Remember John Surtees
I have known John Surtees since he first started car racing in 1960. He was always a good and helpful friend who would answer your questions probably more honestly than most racing drivers. [Read more…] about John Surtees, a Tribute
By Pete Vack
Photos by Jonathan Sharp and Hugues Vanhoolandt
On October 25, 1964, as he won the Formula One World Championship driving for Ferrari, John Surtees achieved what no man before or since has accomplished, becoming a world champion on both two wheels and four. Catching up with the indestructible 67-year-old champion at the Amelia Island Concours in 2001, we were granted an exclusive interview with the Champion and learned firsthand the perils and pleasures encountered while racing for both MV Agusta and Ferrari. This interviewed originally appeared in Forza magazine in 2001 and we reproduce the full text below for the first time in VeloceToday. This is part 1 of 2.
He is still instantly recognizable, though most photos one might see of him date from the 1960s. The eyes are sharp, clear and blue, and if he has a bit less hair than he once did, he is as energetic as ever. His complexion, once much the concern of Ferrari Team Manager Dragoni, is as pale as it has always been. He speaks calmly, slowly, containing each word with an accent very similar to actor Michael Caine, also from South London. Now living in Edenbridge, Kent, John Surtees is very much at home with himself, at ease with the past, comfortable with the present, and confident of the future.
By Pete Vack
Photos by Jonathan Sharp and Hugues Vanhoolandt
On October 25, 1964, as he won the Formula One World Championship driving for Ferrari, John Surtees achieved what no man before or since has accomplished, becoming a world champion on both two wheels and four. Catching up with the indestructible 67-year-old champion at the Amelia Island Concours in 2001, we were granted an exclusive interview with the Champion and learned firsthand the perils and pleasures encountered while racing for both MV Agusta and Ferrari. This interviewed originally appeared in Forza magazine in 2001, and we reproduce the full text below for the first time in VeloceToday. This is Part 2.
By the end of the year, Ferrari was knocking at the door of John Surtees. Bravely, he turned Mr. Ferrari down, politely, of course, and probably the only driver aside from Stirling Moss to do so. He was working on a new Lola and found sponsorship with Bowmaker for the 1962 season, and knew he wanted to go to Ferrari feeling 100% sure of himself and his abilities. In late 1962, he was again approached by Ferrari. Surtees recalled this time, relating it to his motorcycle years. “In terms of satisfaction, the motorcycle career was better, because I made less mistakes off the track. I knew all the people. With car racing, I didn’t know a soul, had never really seen a race car. I found out the hard way who you could trust and who you couldn’t.” [Read more…] about The Italian Odyssey of John Surtees Part 2
Story and photos by Jonathan Sharp
London Docklands was once the place where hundreds of ships carrying thousands of tons of cargo and goods from all around the globe would be unloaded at the piers.
Now it is home to the Millennium Dome, or the O2 arena as it is now called; Canary Wharf houses the merchant bankers and the ExCel Exhibition Center is a major contemporary exhibition hall with an address of the Royal Victoria Dock and where the London Classic Car Show was held on February 23-26.
The London show was actually two shows in one. The London Classic Car show features the grand avenue car parade. Across the corridor was the inaugural Historic Motorsport International show. One ticket gained access to both. [Read more…] about London Classic Car Show 2017
This is the second half of the 1958 Lancia folio, which features an unusual side of Lancia. And as we related last week, note the dealer’s stamp – Falvey Motor Sales Company – which despite, or because of its location near Detroit, was a favorite hangout of the 50s sporty car set and located on the famous drag strip of Woodward Avenue. Eric Davison recounted the story of Falvey for VeloceToday in “Requiem for a Salesman”. This bit of Lanciana came from Robert F. Pauley, an engineer for Chrysler who also hung out at Falvey’s and wrote many great articles for VeloceToday such as “Giovanni Savonuzzi’s Detroit Odyssey” Pauley found this booklet in 1958 at Falvey’s when Lancia was at the top of their game.