historic racing cars


Alfa Romeo has showcased its racing heritage at the 101st Targa Florio, the world’s oldest automotive race, held in Sicily last weekend. Alfa Romeo provided cars from its collection at the Museo Storico Alfa Romeo in Arese including the Giulietta SZ (1960), Giulia Sprint GTA (1965), Giulia Sprint Speciale (1963) and 1600 Spider Duetto (1966)

1911 Indianapolis 500 Marmon Wasp - Carlo Demand

The Marmon Wasp was raced at the 1911 Indianapolis 500 by Ray Harroun who along with Howard Marmon designed the car.  The car was a study of innovation from nose to tail.  Up front the Wasp used a four shock system to counteract the bumpy conditions of the dirt and gravel surfaces and unpredictability of the new brick surface at Indy.  Harroun, the consummate engineer, determined that speeds over 80 mph were disastrous for tires so he kept his speed in check and only changed two tires during the race.  The second place car by contrast changed tires fourteen times during the race.  The engine was a special design as well adding two more cylinders to the four used in the Marmon 32 Model which was already quite successful in racing.  The cockpit was designed only for the driver at a time when racing was typically a two man affair with driver and riding “mechanician.” This shaved significant weight off the car with a narrower body and one less passenger aboard.  To accommodate the steering position a gear system was devised to move the steering column to the center of the cockpit.  The tail was also unusual in the style of an airplane tail and stabilizer which is not surprising as Harroun was flying the steel monoplane he designed just one month before the 1911 race.  Perhaps the cleverest feature was the rear view mirror he installed before the race to address the fear that his driving solo would endanger other racers because he would be without a mechanician on look out.  The installation of the rear view mirror centered above the cockpit was apparently inspired by use on a carriage he saw in Chicago years before. Years later Harroun said that the mirror was unfortunately useless during the race because it shook too much


Unfortunately the BMW 2002 Turbo ( E20 ) arrived just in time for the global oil crisis in 1973, so only 1672 of these iconic „Neue Klasse” medium-range missiles were built until 1974. Note the reversed „turbo" badge, originally meant to give the car added rearview-mirror cred on Autobahns… The 2002 sat at the top of the range and was the first series-produced car anywhere in Europe to come with turbo-technology


Irene: What do you do?
Driver: I drive.
Irene: Like a limo driver?
Driver: No, like, for movies.
Irene: Oh. You mean all the car chases and stuff?
Driver: Yeah.
Irene: Isn’t that dangerous?
Driver: It’s only part-time. Mostly I work at a garage. („Drive”, 2011)

Saved from a Hamburg junkyard in 2004, rebuilt in 1100 hours according to requirements of the historic touring car series Group 2: 1970 BMW 2002 ti (165 hp, 205 km/h). I like these BBS wheels.