We’re just back from a week’s holiday in Sicily where we spent a day driving the Targa Florio – the 72 km Piccolo circuit which was in use from 1932 to 1936 and 1951 to 1977. I was shocked by the state of the roads and we were not able to complete a full lap as the road had slipped down the mountainside at one point and we had to take a diversion. Nevertheless, we almost did it and here are some photos from the day and a few from the glory days gone by.
The grandstand at Cerda 1970 (above) and in 2016 (below)
Nuvolari thunders under the footbridge in 1932 above. All quiet in 2016 below.
The roads were not tarmac at first (above) but even so must have been better than they are now (below).
Phil Hill in his Ferrari 250 GTO in 1962 avoiding some goats (above). Animals are still a hazard in 2016 (below).
Collesano 1960 (above) and 2016 (below).
Campolfelice then and now.
Let’s finish with a video…
This week a Ferrari 335S sold for £24.65m.
I’m going to Sicily next month to drive the Targa Florio (albeit in a hire car) and I bought a guide book to Sicily second-hand off ebay. £2.80 including postage. Do you know, it does not mention the Targa Florio – undoubtedly one of the greatest road races ever?
Nor does it mention the Museo Targa Florio in Collesano. Very strange. Do the authors think I’m going to see some old ruins, visit Montalbano’s house and to drink Marsala? (Well, I am going to drink the Marsala, that’s true).
When I saw the 335S had sold for such silly money I had two thoughts – whoever bought it will never drive it, and it is too clean and shiny. And I thought I’d find an old photo of one doing the Targa Florio in ’57, probably beaten up and dusty. However, It seems that the Sicilian event was not included in the World Sports Car Championship that year and it was won by a Fiat 600! Anyway, here are some photos culled from the internet that show Ferraris being Ferraris around the Sicilian hills and villages. Can’t wait!