Autodromo di Mellaha - Tripoli (I), 6 May 1934
40 laps x 13.140 km (8.165 mi) = 525.60 km (326.6 mi)
(Note 1)


2Jean-Pierre WimilleAutomobiles E. BugattiBugattiT592.8S-8
4Carlo Felice TrossiScuderia FerrariAlfa RomeoTipo B/P32.9S-8
6Piero TaruffiOfficine A. MaseratiMaseratiV54.92x8
8Tazio NuvolariT. NuvolariMaserati8CM3.0S-8DNA - driver injured
10Hugh HamiltonWhitney Straight Ltd.Maserati8CM3.0S-8Nuvolari's car
12Lelio PellegriniL. PellegriniAlfa RomeoMonza2.3S-8
14Carlo GazzabiniProf. GaleazziMaseratiV44.02x8
16Antonio BrivioAutomobiles E. BugattiBugattiT592.8S-8DNA
18Achille VarziScuderia FerrariAlfa RomeoTipo B/P32.9S-8
20Guglielmo CarraroliScuderia FerrariAlfa RomeoMonza2.6S-8
22Mario TadiniScuderia FerrariAlfa RomeoTipo B/P32.6S-8
24Lou MooreFrank ScullyDuesemberg-Miller3.7S-8
26Earl HoweEarl HoweMaserati8CM3.0S-8DNA
28Guy MollScuderia FerrariAlfa RomeoTipo B/P32.9S-8
30Peter de PaoloFrank ScullyMiller5.0V-8
32Louis ChironScuderia FerrariAlfa RomeoTipo B/P32.9S-8
34Luigi PremoliL. PremoliB.M.P.Speciale3.0S-8
36George EystonG. EystonAlfa RomeoMonza2.6S-8
38René DreyfusAutomobiles E. BugattiBugattiT592.8S-8
40Tim Rose-RichardsT. Rose-RichardsMaserati26M3.0S-8DNA
42Clemente BiondettiGruppo Genovese San GiorgioMaserati26M2.8S-8
44Felice BonettoF. BonettoAlfa RomeoMonza2.3S-8
46Gianni BattagliaG. BattagliaAlfa RomeoMonza2.3S-8
48Raymond SommerR. SommerAlfa RomeoMonza2.3S-8
50Goffredo ZehenderOfficine A. MaseratiMaserati8CM3.0S-8
52Philippe EtancelinP. EtancelinMaserati8CM3.0S-8
54Whitney StraightWhitney Straight Ltd.Maserati8CM3.0S-8
56Eugenio SienaScuderia SienaMaserati26M3.0S-8
58Per Viktor WidengrenP.V. WidengrenAlfa RomeoMonza2.6S-8
60Renato BalestreroScuderia BalestreroAlfa RomeoMonza2.3S-8

Varzi vs. Moll

The Formula Libre Tripoli Grand Prix was held on the high-speed Mellaha circuit in Libya (an Italian colony in those days). The track had been widened and the high speed corners had received a slight banking. As the race was held in conjunction with the state lottery there was as usual a high number of entries. After the 1933 scandal where there were accusations that the result may have had been fixed, the rules had been changed (Note 2) so that the owners of the drawn tickets could not come in contact with the drivers before the race.
Scuderia Ferrari entered five cars, four P3/Tipo Bs for Varzi, Chiron, Moll and Tadini and a Monza for Guglielmo Carraroli. The Maserati team entered their twin-engined "Sedici Cilindri" monster for Taruffi. Bugatti entered three T59s. After his catastrophic Monaco performance Robert Benoist stood down in favour for Antonio Brivio, who was making his debut race for Bugatti. The other cars were driven by Jean-Pierre Wimille and René Dreyfus. There was also the usual field of private Maseratis and Alfa Romeos.
      A rather unusual sight in Grand Prix racing was the two American Miller cars, a four-wheel-drive 5 liter Indianapolis car (Gus Schrader 1932, crash lap 8) driven by Peter de Paolo, the first 4WD car to start in a major Grand Prix, and a 3723 cc ex-Indianapolis Duesenberg for Lou Moore (Foreman Axle Special/Maley & Scully, Moore 1933, 3rd)
After practice ended there was a near miss between Varzi, who had not slowed down, and Dreyfus, who was towing Brivio's car back to the pits. Varzi missed the Bugatti duo but hit a road bank, braking the halfshaft and damaging the engine. An new engine was flown down to Tripoli for the race.

Pole Position

Alfa Romeo






Alfa Romeo






Alfa Romeo


Alfa Romeo


Alfa Romeo




Alfa Romeo




Alfa Romeo

de Paolo



Alfa Romeo


Alfa Romeo


Alfa Romeo


Alfa Romeo






Alfa Romeo










Alfa Romeo

(Note 3)
At the start Taruffi took the "Sedici Cilindri" up in front and held it until Chiron squeezed past him on the fourth lap. Situation after 5 laps:
1. Chiron (Alfa Romeo)20m00s
2. Taruffi (Maserati)20m01.6s
3. Varzi (Alfa Romeo)21m11s
4. Wimille (Bugatti)21m13s
5. Trossi (Alfa Romeo)21m15.4s

O lap seven Taruffi missed a braking in a corner that later would be known as the "Taruffi corner" and went hard straight through a beer advertisement poster (Note 4). Order after 10 laps:
1. Chiron (Alfa Romeo)40m21.4s
2. Varzi (Alfa Romeo)40m38.8s
3. Hamilton (Maserati)42m11.8s
4. Wimille (Bugatti) 43m41.6s
5. Moll (Alfa Romeo)45m53.6s

Chiron held the lead in his Alfa Romeo until having to do a pit stop for new tyres and letting Varzi and Hamilton by. After the pit stop Chiron was soon able to retake the second place from Hamilton but the Maserati driver put up a great effort to follow Chiron and only had to give up when the car developed a carburettor failure. After 30 laps:
1. Varzi (Alfa Romeo)2m06m03.0s
2. Chiron (Alfa Romeo)2m06m03.4s
3. Moll (Alfa Romeo)
4. Tadini (Alfa Romeo)
5. Etancelin (Maserati)

WIth ten laps to go Varzi held the lead with Chiron close behind and Moll almost minutes back. Just as in Monaco Moll did a great job, closing in on the top duo, who were running a tactical game, watching out each other. With just a few laps to go Moll passed Chiron, who was suffering from dropping oil pressure. In the last corner Moll tried to pass Varzi but the veteran driver was not to be surprised and closed the gate. Moll later accused Varzi for trying to push him off the road. At the flag Moll was only a car's length behind Varzi who took the victory just as he had done in 1933, but this time there was no talk about any foul play.



1.18Achille VarziScuderia FerrariAlfa RomeoTipo B/P32.9S-8402h48m53.8s
2.28Guy MollScuderia FerrariAlfa RomeoTipo B/P32.9S-8402h48m54.0s+ 0.2s
3.32Louis ChironScuderia FerrariAlfa RomeoTipo B/P32.9S-8402h49m16.0s?+ 22.2s?
4.52Philippe EtancelinP. EtancelinMaserati8CM3.0S-8402h59m39.0s+ 6m45.2s
5.42Clemente BiondettiGruppo Genovese San GiorgioMaserati26M2.8S-8403h00m14.2s+ 11m20.4s
6.38René DreyfusAutomobiles E. BugattiBugattiT592.8S-8403h02m12.2s+ 13m18.4s
7.24Lou MooreFrank ScullyDuesemberg-Miller3.7S-8403h06m24.8s+ 17m31.0s
8.30Peter de PaoloFrank ScullyMiller5.0V-8403h07m21.6s+ 18m27.8s
9.36George EystonG. EystonAlfa RomeoMonza2.6S-8403h14m22.6s+ 25m28.8s
10.60Renato BalestreroScuderia BalestreroAlfa RomeoMonza2.3S-8393h11m36.0s
11.20Guglielmo CarraroliScuderia FerrariAlfa RomeoMonza2.6S-8382h11m15.2s
DNF22Mario TadiniScuderia FerrariAlfa RomeoTipo B/P32.6S-837
DNF10Hugh HamiltonWhitney Straight Ltd.Maserati8CM3.0S-830magneto/carburettor?
DNF2Jean-Pierre WimilleAutomobiles E. BugattiBugattiT592.8S-825oil pipe
DNF58Per Viktor WidengrenP.V. WidengrenAlfa RomeoMonza2.6S-822engine
DNF12Lelio PellegriniL. PellegriniAlfa RomeoMonza2.3S-814
DNF34Luigi PremoliL. PremoliB.M.P.Speciale3.0S-814
DNF54Whitney StraightWhitney Straight Ltd.Maserati8CM3.0S-811piston
DNF56Eugenio SienaScuderia SienaMaserati26M3.0S-810
DNF46Gianni BattagliaG. BattagliaAlfa RomeoMonza2.3S-88
DNF6Piero TaruffiOfficine A. MaseratiMaseratiV54.92x87crash
DNF4Carlo Felice TrossiScuderia FerrariAlfa RomeoTipo B/P32.9S-86
DNF14Carlo GazzabiniProf. GaleazziMaseratiV44.02x85
DNF48Raymond SommerR. SommerAlfa RomeoMonza2.3S-83
DNF44Felice BonettoF. BonettoAlfa RomeoMonza2.3S-82
DNF50Goffredo ZehenderOfficine A. MaseratiMaserati8CM3.0S-81
Fastest lap: Louis Chiron (Alfa Romeo) in 3m55.4s = 201.0 km/h (124.9 mph) (Note 1)
Winner's medium speed: 186.7 km/h (116.0 mph)
Weather: hot.

1. Counted with 13.14 km track length as given by Nixon (Silver Arrows) & Venables (Racing Fifteen-Hundreds). Sheldon uses 13.1 km as does some contemporary magazines (AZ MOTORWELT 4,5/1935 p12). With a 13.1 km track length the total race length would be 524 km (325.6 mi), race speed 186.2 km/h (115,7 mph) and fastest lap speed 200.3 km/h (124.5 mph).

2. All the drivers had to sit in the cars before a race number was drawn for each of the lucky lottery winners, who had been invited to the race. The lucky person who got the race number of the winning car would go home 7 1/2 million lire richer (remember that the Lire was worth more then than now).

3. 5-5-5 grid from picture evidence with thanks to Otto Grabe.

4. Taruffi later got a bill for damages from the beer company.



Eläintarharata - Helsinki (FIN), 13 May 1934
50 laps x 2.000 km (1.243 mi) = 100.00 km (62.1 mi)


1Asser WalleniusA. WalleniusFordSpecial3.6V-8
2Ippolito BerroneI. BerroneMaserati4CM2.0S-4
2Einar AlmE. AlmFordDNS - car declared dangerous
4Eugen BjørnstadE. BjørnstadAlfa RomeoMonza2.3S-8
5Knut Gustav SundstedtK-G. SundstedtBugattiT35B2.3S-8DNA
6Paul PietschP. PietschAlfa RomeoMonza2.6S-8
7Bruno NyströmB. NyströmChevrolet
8Nestori SuurkuukkaN. SuurkuukkaFord
9Karl EbbK. EbbMercedes-BenzSSK7.1S-6
10S.P.J. KeinänenS.P.J. KeinänenChryslerSpecial5.1S-6
12Aleksi PatamaA. PatamaFordSpecial

Bjørnstad wins in Finland

Bjørnstad's and Pietsch's Monza Alfas and Berrone's Maserati 8CM put a international impression on the race held in downtown Helsinki. Prizes were 25,000 Fmk, 12,500 Fmk and 7,500 Fmk and 2500 Fmk for the top four finishers.
Of the foreign entries, most attention drew Ippolito Berrone with a 2 liter Maserati 4CM and Giuseppe Ferrari with a 1.5 liter Maserati. They travelled all the way from Parma via Innsbruck, Berlin, Sassnitz, Stockholm and Turku. In Innsbruck an axle on their lorry broke. They managed to get the lorry moved to Berlin only to realize that it was impossible to fix the problem in time to reach the ship to Sweden. They had to leave the 1.5 Maserati in Berlin and continue the trip with a smaller truck and just one race car. Favourites were Paul Pietch and Bjørnstad, each entering a Alfa Romeo Monza. Pietsch's car was painted white and Bjørnstad's red with white-blue lines to indicate the Norwegian flag. Swede Karl-Gustaf Sundstedt did not turn up with his Bugatti as the car failed to arrive from Paris in time. The rest of the entry list consisted of Finns with a rather mixed collection of cars. Ebb had his old Mercedes-Benz SSK and Keinänen his Chrysler. Patama had a Ford, nicely rebuilt to a race car and Alm his oddly looking "tail-Ford" while Wallenius' Ford looked to have been in almost normal spec.
7 a.m. on Thurday morning Berrone went out for a few laps to make himself familiar with the track. He noticed that the brakes on his Maserati needed to be adjusted and his mechanic Bortolini decided to make a lap to check the problem. On the uphill from the "Death curve" towards the Stadium Bortolini met a car driving in opposite direction. It was Giuseppe Ferrari and translator Boccalari arriving to the track. Bortolini braked hard, lost control and went off to the right into a tree, breaking his right leg and bending the Maserati.
      Official practice took place on Friday morning 4 a.m - 6 a.m. the motorcycles using the first hour and then the cars going out two and two with 15 minutes time for each pair. First off were Wallenius and Alm. Even if Alm only did a 1m25s lap the movements of Alm's tail-Ford in the corners looked so frightening that orgainizers later declared the car dangerous and unfit to take part in the race. Next pair was Pietsch and Bjørnstad, the German putting in some 1m14s-1m15s laps, the Norwegian getting down to 1m16s . In the third pair Ebb made the fastest lap of the day, 1m13s , while Keinänen did a 1m15s before he stopped after four laps with a stuck gearbox and had to be towed away. Finally Suurkuukka, Patama and Nyström were allowed out to practice. Berrone, whose car was under repair, was of course not practicing. At the end of practice the drivers did a 350 m start test on the straight to decide the grid positions. All but Ebb and Bjørnstad did two runs but only Alm, managed to improve his time. Times for the other drivers were: Ebb 14.7s, Bjørnstad 14.9s Pietsch 15.1s/15.4s, Patama 16.2s/16.2s, Wallenius 17.0s/17.2s, Suurkuukka 17.0s/19.0s, Alm 17.5s/17.3s and Nyström 19.0s/19.0s. The positions for the three drivers who had not practiced were decided by ballot.

Pole Position

Alfa Romeo






Alfa Romeo






No time





No time

* 5 Sundstedt (Bugatti) DNA

The start was delayed due to an engine fire on the grid. When the race finally started local hero Ebb took the lead from pole position with his big Mercedes but on the second lap he was passed by Bjørnstad and soon afterwards by Pietsch as well.
5 laps:
1. Bjørnstad (Alfa Romeo)6m06s
2. Pietsch (Alfa Romeo)6m10.1s
3. Ebb (Mercedes-Benz)6m15s
4. Keinänen (Chrysler)6m17s
5. Berrone (Maserati)6m31s

10 laps:
1. Bjørnstad (Alfa Romeo)11m59s
2. Pietsch (Alfa Romeo)12m09s
3. Ebb (Mercedes-Benz)12m30s
4. Keinänen (Chrysler)12m32s
5. Wallenius (Ford)12m00s

15 laps:
1. Bjørnstad (Alfa Romeo)17m45s
2. Pietsch (Alfa Romeo)18m13.1s
3. Ebb (Mercedes-Benz)18m44s
4. Keinänen (Chrysler)18m55s
5. Wallenius (Ford)
6. Patama (Ford)

At 1/3 race distance Ebb dropped to forth as Keinänen passed.
20 laps:
1. Bjørnstad (Alfa Romeo)23m42s
2. Pietsch (Alfa Romeo)24m16.8s
3. Keinänen (Chrysler)24m51s
4. Ebb (Mercedes-Benz)24m59s

25 laps:
1. Bjørnstad (Alfa Romeo)29m30s
2. Pietsch (Alfa Romeo)30m17.7s
3. Keinänen (Chrysler)30m58s
4. Ebb (Mercedes-Benz)31m04s

30 laps:
1. Bjørnstad (Alfa Romeo)35m11s
2. Pietsch (Alfa Romeo)36m15.9s
3. Keinänen (Chrysler)36m56s
4. Ebb (Mercedes-Benz)37m12s

35 laps:
1. Bjørnstad (Alfa Romeo)41m11s
2. Pietsch (Alfa Romeo)42m14.3s
3. Keinänen (Chrysler)43m04s
4. Ebb (Mercedes-Benz)43m18s

On lap 36 Keinänen was out with broken rear axle leaving Ebb back in third place again.
40 laps:
1. Bjørnstad (Alfa Romeo)47m14s
2. Pietsch (Alfa Romeo)48m13.1s
4. Ebb (Mercedes-Benz)49m27s

45 laps:
1. Bjørnstad (Alfa Romeo)53m15s
2. Pietsch (Alfa Romeo)54m10.6s
4. Ebb (Mercedes-Benz)55m36s

Norwegian driver Bjørnstad was totally dominant, lapping everyone but Pietsch at least once.



1.4Eugen BjørnstadE. BjørnstadAlfa RomeoMonza2.3S-85059m23.1s
2.6Paul PietschP. PietschAlfa RomeoMonza2.6S-8501h00m10.1s+ 47.0s
3.9Karl EbbK. EbbMercedes-BenzSSK7.1S-6491n01m47.2s
4.1Asser WalleniusA. WalleniusFordSpecial3.6V-8?1h09m25s
DNF10S.P.J. KeinänenS.P.J. KeinänenChryslerSpecial5.1S-635broken rear axle
DNF12Aleksi PatamaA. PatamaFordSpecial21run off/crash
DNF2Ippolito BerroneI. BerroneMaserati4CM2.0S-46fuel line
DNF8Nestori SuurkuukkaN. SuurkuukkaFord0crashed into a tree
DNS7Bruno NyströmB. NyströmChevrolet0fire on the grid
Fastest lap: N/A
Winner's medium speed: 101.0 km/h (62.8 mph)
Weather: overcast/sunny



Piccolo Circuito delle Madonie - Sicily (I), 20 May 1934
6 laps x 72 km (44.7 mi) = 432 km (268.4 mi)


2Ferdinando BarbieriScuderia FerrariAlfa RomeoMonza2.6S-8
4Giovanni AlloattiG. AlloattiBugattiT512.3S-8
6Pietro GhersiScuderia FerrariAlfa RomeoTipo B/P32.6S-8
8Guglielmo CarraroliScuderia FerrariAlfa RomeoMonza2.6S-8
10Achille VarziScuderia FerrariAlfa RomeoTipo B/P32.9S-8
12Renato BalestreroR. BalestreroAlfa RomeoMonza2.6S-8
14Gianni BattagliaG. BattagliaAlfa RomeoMonza2.6S-8
16Lelio PellegriniL. PellegriniAlfa RomeoMonza2.3S-8DNA - did not appear
18Luigi PagesL. PagesAlfa RomeoMonza2.3S-8
20Io BaldoIo BaldoBugattiT512.3S-8DNA - did not appear
22Costantino MagistriC. MagistriAlfa Romeo6C 1750GS1.5S-6
24Antonio d'AgataA. d'AgataMaserati26M2.5S-8
26Luigi BeccariaScuderia BeccariaAlfa Romeo6C 17501.7S-6DNA - did not appear
28"Fiorello"G. CorteseAlfa Romeo6C 17501.7S-6
30Attilio BattilanaGruppo Genovese San GiorgioAlfa RomeoMonza2.3S-8

Alfa Romeos all the way

The Targa Florio was a shadow of its former glory. A single Bugatti and a single Maserati challenged ten Alfa Romeos. Rain made the course even more dangerous than usual. Alloatti in a Bugatti went over a bridge parapet on the second lap and received wounds that eventually proved fatal .
      Ghersi in the works Ferrari led for the first two laps but then went off and lost 20 minutes for repairs. His team mate Varzi took over the lead and dominated the rest of the race in the rain to take the flag followed by six other Alfa drivers.
As it was the 25th Targa Florio there should have been a reason for celebration. But Cavalliere Vincenzo Florio was now absent from the Auto Club di Sicilia organizing committee and everyone had to admit it, that the Targa Florio was a shadow of its former glory. Alfa Romeo cars with Italian drivers had won the four latest Targas and foreign teams and drivers saw no reason to spend resources on an event that the Italians knew by hart. So the Targa had turned into a local Italian event and a rather minor Italian event at that, especially as the 1934 race clashed both with the Frontieres Grand Prix in Belgium and the Morocco Grand Prix. As in 1932 and 1933 the race was run on Piccolo Circuito delle Madonie but the race length was down to 6 laps from 8 in 1932 and 7 in 1933.
      There was a total prize fund of 150.000 lire, the winner receiving the gold medal of the King of Italy plus 35.000 lire. The second and third positioned competitors received bronze replicas of the "Targa" shield and 20.000 lire and 12.000 lire each respectively.
Scuderia Ferrari could hardly neglect to defend their series of Targa successes so they divided their forces, sending three P3 monopostos to Casablanca and two P3s plus two Monzas to Sicily. Achille Varzi was to race a 2.9 litre P3 and Pietro Ghersi a 2.6 litre ditto while Nando Barbieri and Guglielmo Carraroli were selected to handle the Monzas. There were five other Monzas in the entry list entered by Gruppo Genovese (for Attilio Battilana), Gianni Battaglia, Renato Balestrero, Luigi Pages and Lelio Pellegrini.
      Giuseppe Cortese (not to be confused with Franco Cortese) racing under the alias "Fiorello"entered an Alfa Romeo 6C 1750 as did Constantino Magistri and Luigi Beccaria.
      The only non Alfa Romeos in the race were Antonia d'Agata in a 2.5 litre Maserati 26M and Io Baldo (sp) and Cavaliere Giovanni Alloatti in Bugattis. Alloatti had bought the ex-works car T51 #51153, possibly via Varzi, and had it registered in April 1934.
      Of the entries Pellegrini, Io Baldo and Beccaria did not turn up for the race.
Targa Florio has been called the hardest circuit race in the world and to add to that, that weekend the weather at Sicily was miserable.
      The rain showed no sign of ending. Late in the night before the race the decision was taken by Scuderia Ferrari to use fenders and rain tyres during the race and the mechanics went to work to change the cars. The other competitors probably followed the idea as well.
      The "fenders" on the Alfa Romeo monopostos were simply big horizontal plates fitted at the frame each side of the engine to protect the driver from what the front wheels threw up and it looks like the Scuderia Ferrari Monzas were fitted with them too while some of the other cars used more traditional looking fenders.
      The "rain tyres" used were prepared by what the Italians called the "Ancorizzato" process of making cross-cuts in the thread to get a better grip.
      The drivers were to be released at two minute intervals. "Normal" racing, car against car, was of course impossible on a narrow course like Targa Florio. Shown here are race numbers according to Paul Sheldon's book. For some reason the starting order drawn by Auto Club di Sicilia doesn't follow that race numbers order.
      It kept on raining but still the Sicilian Targa Florio fans turned up at the start at Cerda as well as all over the course. Joining them at the main grandstand was Arturo Marescalchi, Undersecretary of agriculture and foresty, Giovanni Battista Marziali, prefect of Palermo and Pietro Parisio, commissioner of R.A.C.I.

Cars started at intervals
2BarbieriAlfa Romeo10:30
6GhersiAlfa Romeo10:34
10VarziAlfa Romeo 10:36
22MagistriAlfa Romeo10:40
30BattilanaAlfa Romeo10:42
28"Fiorello"Alfa Romeo10:44
12BalestreroAlfa Romeo 10:46
18PagesAlfa Romeo 10:48
14BattagliaAlfa Romeo10:50
8CarraroliAlfa Romeo10:52

At 10:30 Undersecretary Marescalchi , denying an offered umbrella, went out to the track with the flag in hand and sent away Barbieri in his Alfa Romeo. Barbieri was followed two minutes later by Alloatti. Then it was Ghersi's turn after a further two minutes and so on. Pages had flooded the carburetor on his Monza and came away 1m45s late.
      Hardly had Carraroli's Ferrari Monza disappeared from Cerda as last vehicle away before the first race report came in. Barbieri had passed Caltavuturo. There were two intermediate timing stations, one at Caltavuturo, 600 m above the sea and 30 km from the start and one at Collesano, 448m above sea and 48 km from the start. A heavy shower fell over Cerda while the results from the stations continued to drop in. Ghersi had been fastest at Caltavuturo with Alloatti, Varzi, Barbieri and Magistri within a minute behind him. At Collesano Ghersi was leading Varzi by 43 seconds.
      At 11:30 a fire cracker went off to get the spectators' attention. The first competitor was approaching Cerda. Through the rain Barbieri's Monza appeared to the cheers from to crowd. Just a minute later two more fire crackers announced two more cars arriving. It was Ghersi in the P3, who had gained almost 3 minutes on Barbieri , followed by Alloatti in the T51 Bugatti, who had been passed by Ghersi and now tried his best to keep up the pace of the Alfa.
      Two and a half minutes later Varzi turned up. Then the spectators had to wait 7 minutes for Magistri , who had done a great job in his little Alfa 1750, not only having caught d'Agata's Maserati but having left it 4 minutes behind. And then car after car followed. The race order after the first lap was:
1. Ghersi (Alfa Romeo)58m40s (73.6 km/h)
2. Varzi (Alfa Romeo)59m18s
3. Alloatti (Bugatti)1h00m53s
4. Barbieri (Alfa Romeo)1h01m28.6s
5. Magistri (Alfa Romeo)1h02m32s
6. Balestrero (Alfa Romeo)1h03m40.2s
7. "Fiorello" (Alfa Romeo)1h05m23.8s
8. Pages (Alfa Romeo)1h07m06s
9. d'Agata (Maserati)1h08m52s
10. Carraroli (Alfa Romeo)1h09m20.4s
11. Battaglia (Alfa Romeo)1h10m55.2s
12. Battilana (Alfa Romeo)

When Carraroli had passed there was a half an hour interval for the spectators, who however could follow the race from the intermediate reports.
      On the second lap at the Cardellino bridge, 23 km after the start, Alloatti overdid it and crashed into the bridge stone parapet. The Bugatti fell some ten meters down into the valley. An ambulance took Alloatti to the San Saverio hospital in Palermo where the doctors found that his back was broken in two places and that he also had a fractured skull.
      Barbieri still held the lead on the track after two laps. Ghersi was just 36 seconds behind with Varzi arriving to Cerda as third, 2m24s later. The order after 2 laps was:
1. Ghersi (Alfa Romeo)1h59m02.8s (72.6 km/h)
2. Varzi (Alfa Romeo)1h59m27s
3. Barbieri (Alfa Romeo)2h02m27.4s?
4. Magistri (Alfa Romeo)
5. Balestrero (Alfa Romeo)
6. "Fiorello" (Alfa Romeo)
7. Pages (Alfa Romeo)
8. Battaglia (Alfa Romeo)
9. Carraroli (Alfa Romeo)
10. d'Agata (Maserati)
11. Battilana (Alfa Romeo)

D'Agata retired his Maserati with ignition trouble. That left only ten Alfa Romeos in the competition.
      The rain finally stopped at Cerda and the weather there turned much better. The spectators eagerly waited for the drivers to appear again. The report from Collesano showed that Ghersi and Varzi were close together in time. Then a Scuderia Ferrari monoposto appeared but it was not Ghersi but Varzi who turned up. Two and a half minutes later Barbieri appeared in his Monza. Both made their planned pit stops for fuel and new rear wheels and were soon away again. Then after ten minutes wait Magistri sensationally turned up in the 1750 and only then, behind him, Ghersi. At a curve near Campofelice Ghersi had crashed and damaged the right front fender on the Alfa and a bolt had become loose on the steering. Repairs and a plug change took 7m10s. That meant that Ghersi had lost over 20 minutes in total and Magistri now was 2nd!
1. Varzi (Alfa Romeo)3h00m38s (71.7 km/h)
2. Magistri (Alfa Romeo)3h07m27.6s
3. Barbieri (Alfa Romeo)3h09m08.4s
4. Balestrero (Alfa Romeo)3h16m21.2s
5. "Fiorello" (Alfa Romeo)
6. Battaglia (Alfa Romeo)
7. Pages (Alfa Romeo)
8. Ghersi (Alfa Romeo)3h22m05s
9. Battilana (Alfa Romeo)
10. Carraroli (Alfa Romeo)

Battilana had damaged the steering at the downhill section after Callesano and had to retire his Monza.
      From the halfway point the lap times were going up for every car and continued getting worse and worse as there race proceeded. While Varzi was in command of the race and had no reason to push anymore, it is possible that while the rain had stopped at Cerda it had intensified in the mountains making the conditions worse.
      Varzi passed the main stand for the fourth time as first driver followed five minutes later by Barbieri, while Magistri was still pushing in second position overall.
1. Varzi (Alfa Romeo)4h03m25s (71.0 km/h)
2. Magistri (Alfa Romeo)4h11m13.1s
3. Barbieri (Alfa Romeo)4h14m49s
4. Balestrero (Alfa Romeo)
5. Pages (Alfa Romeo)
6. "Fiorello" (Alfa Romeo)
7. Battaglia (Alfa Romeo)
8. Ghersi (Alfa Romeo)
9. Carraroli (Alfa Romeo)

On the fifth lap Carraroli retired with a broken differential. Order after 5 laps:
1. Varzi (Alfa Romeo)5h08m56s (69.9 km/h)
2. Barbieri (Alfa Romeo)5h21m17s
3. Magistri (Alfa Romeo)5h25m02.4s
4. Balestrero (Alfa Romeo)
5. Pages (Alfa Romeo)
6. "Fiorello" (Alfa Romeo)
7. Ghersi (Alfa Romeo)
8. Battaglia (Alfa Romeo)

Varzi took the flag 6 hours and 20 minutes after the race was started. Then there was a seven minutes wait for Barbieri, who had taken over second position from Magistri. The latter had had engine problems and had been unable to keep up the pace but arrived 23 minutes later to finish third both on track and on overall. Three and a half minutes behind Magistri Ghersi took the flag but he knew he has lost too much time. Behind him Balestrero and Pages had 12 and 14 minutes time to beat him and Balestrero did that easy arriving only 8 minutes behind Ghersi, while there was a tight fight with Pages who robbed Ghersi from the 5th position by just 3 seconds.
      "Fiorello" finished 7th and last while Battaglia seems to have retired on the last lap.
      And then the rain started to come down again as the teams packed up and started towards Palermo.
      The winner's medium speed was, because of the conditions, of course low. Still it was faster than in the 1931 race, run in similar conditions but on the even more demanding Grande Circuito delle Madione.



1.10Achille VarziScuderia FerrariAlfa RomeoTipo B/P32.9S-866h14m26.8s
2.2Ferdinando BarbieriScuderia FerrariAlfa RomeoMonza2.6S-866h27m14.2s+ 12m47.4s
3.22Costantino MagistriC. MagistriAlfa Romeo6C 1750GS1.5S-666h40m02.6s+ 25m35.8s
4.12Renato BalestreroR. BalestreroAlfa RomeoMonza2.6S-866h45m43.0s+ 31m16.2s
5.18Luigi PagesL. PagesAlfa RomeoMonza2.3S-866h49m28.8s+ 35m02.0s
6.6Pietro GhersiScuderia FerrariAlfa RomeoTipo B/P32.6S-866h49m32.0s+ 35m05.2s
7.28"Fiorello"G. CorteseAlfa Romeo6C 17501.7S-666h54m01.2s+ 39m34.4s
DNF14Gianni BattagliaG. BattagliaAlfa RomeoMonza2.6S-85
DNF8Guglielmo CarraroliScuderia FerrariAlfa RomeoMonza2.6S-84differential
DNF30Attilio BattilanaGruppo Genovese San GiorgioAlfa RomeoMonza2.6S-83steering
DNF24Antonio d'AgataA. d'AgataMaserati26M2.5S-82ignition
DNF4Giovanni AlloattiG. AlloattiBugattiT512.3S-81fatal crash
Fastest lap: Pietro Ghersi (Alfa Romeo) on lap 1 in 58m40.0s = 73.6 km/h (45.8 mph)
Winner's medium speed: 69.2 km/h (43.0 mph)
Weather: heavy rains.
In retrospect:
Alloatti fought on at the hospital for almost three weeks before he finally succumbed to his injuries. He was buried at the Cimitero Generale in Turin. His Bugatti was repaired (most probably by the factory) and sold to the Léoz-Abad brothers from Spain.

Primary sources researched for this article:
El Mundo Deportivo, Barcelona
Le Figaro, Paris
Il Littoriale, Roma
La Stampa, Torino
Motor Sport, London
The Motor, London
Special thanks to:
Michael Müller



Chimay (B), 20 May 1934
15 laps x 10.87 km (6.75 mi) = 163.1 km (101.3 mi)
1100cc: 8 laps x 10.87 km (6.75 mi) = 87.0 km (54.0 mi)


Cars up to 1100 cc engine capacity:
Joseph DeshormesJ. DeshormesAmilcarCGS1.1S-4
Paul BaudartP. BaudartAmilcarCGS1.1S-4
Emile CuvelierE. CuvelierRallyABC1.1S-4
Marcel RouleauM. RouleauAmilcarC61.1S-6
MessmakerMessmakerAvior1.1S-4DNA - did not appear
Cars up to 1500 cc engine capacity:
7Bruno SojkaB. SojkaBugattiT51A1.5S-8
Claude "Barowski"C. BossuBugattiT51A1.5S-8
Arthur LegatA. LegatBugattiT37A1.5S-4
Hans SimonsH. SimonsBugattiT37A1.5S-4DNA - did not appear
Cars over 1500 cc engine capacity:
14Willy LonguevilleB. LonguevilleBugattiT35B2.3S-8
Whitney StraightWhitney Straight Ltd.Maserati8CM3.0S-8DNA - did not appear
Jean-Marie de TexidorJ.M. de TexidorAlfa RomeoDNA - did not appear
HoupHoupBugattiDNA - did not appear
MeertMeertAlfa RomeoDNA - did not appear

Longueville literally in his own class

by Leif Snellman
The race had a weak entry list. In the major class Longueville (Bugatti) was the single competitor and he naturally was the overall victor. In the 8 laps 1100cc race Rouleau (Amilcar) was the only competitive entry dominating the class. The only serious racing happened in the 1500cc class between the Bugattis of Sojka, Porter and Legat, Sojka winning from Porter with Legat having to retire.
Created by Jules Buisseret the Frontières Grand Prix in Belgium was organized from 1926 onwards. In 1934 it was as usual raced on the roads over the fields west of the city of Chimay. The race was run in three classes, starting together, with the 1100cc class being flagged after 8 laps while the 1500cc and the class over 1500cc raced for 15 laps. The race clashed in the race calendar with Targa Florio and the Casablanca Grand Prix but that is hardly the main reason the entry list suffered. The fact was however that the 1934 Chimay race was one of weakest in the history of the event.
In the class over 1500cc in the end only local driver Willy Longueville turned up with his Bugatti T35B while the organizers had hoped that at least Houp from Alsace would take part as well. Whitney Straight who had entered his Maserati decided to race at Casablanca instead.
      There were four Bugatti entries in the 1500cc class. Belgian Arthur Legat naturally turned up as always racing the same T37A as he had entered since 1930. He was competing against Czech Bruno Sojka and French drivers Porter and Claude Bossu, the latter racing under the name "Barowski".
      In the 1100cc class Marcel Rouleau entered a 6-cylinder Amilcar C6. To get any kind of race for the spectators Jules Buisseret appealed to the local drivers to bring out their old cars from the barn. Emile Cuvelier entered a Rally. Joseph Deshormes from Saint-Renvy and Paul Baudart from Salles, both villages next to the race course, entered each an old 4-cylinder Amilcar CGS. A driver named Lambert finally entered a 0.86 litre modified Citroën.
The motor cycle races with a decent number of competitors turned out to be the most exciting part of the event. When it finally was time for the car race Longueville was lined up alone in the front row of the grid, followed by the four Bugattis lined up two and two, then the four 1100cc cars and then the Citroën.
Grid not available
(se text)

As the flag dropped Longueville naturally took the lead followed by Sojka, Legat and Porter. Longueville soon pulled away from the rest. Of course he only had to finish the 15 laps to win. Porter passed Legat for second in the voiturette class. The order after the first lap was like this:
1.Longueville (Bugatti)5m19.2s (122.6 km/h)
2.Sojka (Bugatti)5m56.6s (109.7 km/h)
3.Porter (Bugatti) 5m58.0s
4.Legat (Bugatti) 5m58.2s
5."Barowski" (Bugatti)
6.Rouleau (Amilcar)
7.Deshormes (Amilcar)
8.Bandart (Amilcar)
9.Cuvelier (Rally)
10.Lambert (Citroën)

Lambert with the Citroën only lasted one lap before he had to call it a day. On the third lap Legat was back up to third overall after having passed Porter and he closed in on Sojka. The battle between Sojka and Legat continued until the 6th lap when Legat had to retire due to valve trouble. But Porter immediately took over the battle and passed Sojka for the voiturette class lead on the same lap.
      After eight laps the 1100cc cars were flagged off, Rouleau winning by a huge margin, while the others had to struggle even to get their old cars to finish the race, losing by over 14 minutes.
      The race between Porter and Sojka went on during the second part of the race and Sojka finally got the upper hand taking the flag 10 second in front of Porter to win the voiturette class. Overall race winner Longueville had taken the flag 1m24s earlier. He had cruised during most of the race doing 5m30s laps in average. His first lap from a standing start had actually been his fastest.



1.Willy LonguevilleB. LonguevilleBugattiT35B2.3LS-8151h22m58s
2.Bruno SojkaB. SojkaBugattiT51A1.5LS-8151h24m24s+ 1m26s
3.PorterPorterBugattiT37A1.5LS-4151h24m34s+ 1m36s
4.Claude "Barowski"C. BossuBugattiT51A1.5LS-8   
DNFArthur LegatA. LegatBugattiT37A1.5LS-45valve 
Fastest lap: Willy Longueville (Bugatti) on lap 1 in 5m19.2s = 122.6 km/h (76.2 mph)
Winner's medium speed: 117.9 km/h (72.8 mph)
Winner's medium speed (1500cc): 115.9 km/h (72.0 mph) Weather:

Results 1100cc


1.Marcel RouleauM. RouleauAmilcarC61.1S-68   50m05s 
2.Joseph DeshormesJ. DeshormesAmilcarCGS1.1S-481h04m10s+ 14m05s
3.Emile CuvelierE. CuvelierRallyABC1.1S-481h04m46s+ 14m41s
4.Paul BaudartP. BaudartAmilcarCGS1.1S-4?  
Fastest lap: ?
Winner's medium speed: 104.2 km/h (64.7 mph)

Main source for this article:
André Biaumet: "Le Grand Prix des Frontières"



Anfa - Casablanca (F), 20 May 1934
60 laps x 6.37 km (3.96 mi) = 382.2 km (237.5 mi)


4Marcel LehouxScuderia FerrariAlfa RomeoTipo B/P32.6S-8
6Luigi SoffiettiScuderia SienaAlfa RomeoMonza2.6S-8
8Clemente BiondettiGruppo Genovese San GiorgioMaserati26M2.8S-8
10Gianfranco ComottiScuderia FerrariAlfa RomeoTipo B/P32.6S-8
12Whitney StraightWhitney Straight Ltd.Maserati8CM3.0S-8
14Juan ZanelliJ. ZanelliAlfa RomeoMonza2.6S-8
16Philippe EtancelinP. EtancelinMaserati8CM3.0S-8
18Hugh HamiltonWhitney Straight Ltd.Maserati8CM3.0S-8
20Raymond SommerR. SommerMaserati8CM3.0S-8
22Mlle "Hellé-Nice"Mlle "Hellé-Nice"Alfa RomeoMonza2.3S-8
24Giovanni MinozziScuderia SienaAlfa RomeoMonza2.3S-8
26Robert BrunetR. BrunetBugattiT512.3S-8
28Secondo CorsiS. CorsiMaserati26M2.8S-8
30Louis ChironScuderia FerrariAlfa RomeoTipo B/P32.6S-8

Ferrari Alfas against independent Maseratis

by Leif Snellman
The Casablanca Grand Prix was run in hot conditions. Scuderia Ferrari driver Chiron dominated the race leading from start to finish with his Alfa Romeo. Behind him his team mate Lehoux had a long duel with independent driver Etancelin in a Maserati, the latter finishing second after that Lehoux had had several tyre failures. Third Scuderia Ferrari driver Comotti also had a tyre failure that gave fourth position to Straight in a Maserati.
The Grand Prix du Maroc organized by the l'AC Marocain was run for the third time at Anfa in west part of the city of Casablanca. Once again the circuit configuration was new. It included parts of both the 1931 and 1932 circuits but the pits, paddock to the right of the course and grandstand area to the left of the course were new. The roads had been widened to 11 meters throughout the course.
      Prizes were 50.000, 25.000, 12.000, 6.000 and 5.000 francs for the first five finishers and an extra 2.000 francs was promised for the fastest lap.
The race clashed with both the Targa Florio and the Frontières Grand Prix in Belgium. Scuderia Ferrari drivers Varzi and Ghersi were thus busy in Sicily. But Scuderia Ferrari sent three older Tipo Bs with 2.6 litre engines to Morocco to be raced by Louis Chiron, Marcel Lehoux and Gianfranco Comotti.
      Scuderia Siena had two Alfa Romeo Monzas for Luigi Soffietti and Giovanni Minozzi while Mlle. Hellé-Nice and Juan Zanelli entered their own Monzas.
      Robert Brunet raced a Bugatti T51 while the rest of the entries consisted of Maseratis. Whitney Straight and Hugh Hamilton raced 8CMs (#3011 / #3016) entered by Whitney Straight, Philippe Etancelin raced his own light blue 8CM (#3010) while Raymond Sommer raced the ex-Zehender 8CM car (#3006) in its first appearance after having been rebuilt by S.E.F.A.C. into an offset-seater. Clemente Biondetti raced Gruppo Genovese San Giorgio's Maserati 26M. Secondo Corsi raced a Maserati 26M as an independent as did a person named Menco. He was listed by L'Auto as Italian while Echo de Alger, spelling his name as Mingault, claimed he was a late entry local i.e. a Moroccan driver.
      Per-Victor Widengren had entered his Monza, newly rebuilt to a 2.6 litre monoposto, for the race, but after engine failure at Tripolis the entry was scratched. L'Auto listed also the Maserati 8CM entries of Benoît Falchetto, Joaquin Palacio and Count de Villapadierna as scratched.
Practice took place Thursday May 17th to Saturday May 19th each morning, from 6:00 to 7:30. But some of the drivers arrived to Casablanca much earlier. Straight and Hamilton arrived from Tripoli on Saturday 12th. The passenger liner "Djenne" (Note 1) arrived from Marseille with Biondetti and Hellé-Nice on Monday 14th and Etancelin arrived on Wednesday 16th.

During Thursday practice Etancelin was fastest followed by Brunet. Straight and Hamilton were still waiting for their cars and Sommer's car was not yet ready. The times were:
Etancelin (Maserati)2m59s
Brunet (Bugatti)3m20s
Hellé-Nice (Alfa Romeo)3m21s
Menco (Maserati)3m27s
Biondetti (Maserati)3m30s

      The same day passenger liner "Azrou" (Note 2) arrived with the Scuderia Ferrari and Scuderia Siena cars and equipment and with drivers Comotti, Minozzi, Soffietti and Zanelli, while Chiron arrived by air.

The Scuderia Ferrari Alfa Romeos of Chiron and Lehoux were fastest during Friday practice, Chiron doing 20, Lehoux 18 and Comotti 14 laps. The times were:
Chiron (Alfa Romeo)2m55s
Lehoux (Alfa Romeo)2m56s
Hamilton (Maserati)2m57s
Etancelin (Maserati)3m02s
Comotti (Alfa Romeo)3m02s
Minozzi (Alfa Romeo)3m06s
Straight (Maserati)3m06s
Biondetti (Maserati)3m10s
Soffietti (Alfa Romeo)3m14s
Zanelli (Alfa Romeo)3m18s
Brunet (Bugatti)3m32s
Corsi (Maserati)3m32s
Hellé-Nice (Alfa Romeo)3m36s
Menco (Maserati)3m40s

Chiron and Lehoux remained fastest during Saturday practice, each doing 2m49s laps. The full results of the three combined practices can be seen on the grid. (Source is L'Auto which due to a mistake forgot to list Straight's and Hamilton's times.)
Some twenty thousand people gathered in bright sunshine along the 6.4 km long Anfa circuit. It was hot but a breezy gusting wind was blowing. Among the dignitaries present were the Sultan of Morocco with his son and the civil controller Georges Orthlieb.
      The circuit was opened by the famous French aviator Dieudonné Costes, who, together with his wife circled the course in a luxury car. The cars were lined up in 3-2-3 formation and at 2:30 p.m. the legendary race reporter Charles Faroux, who worked as race director, dropped the flag.
Pole Position



Alfa Romeo


Alfa Romeo






Alfa Romeo


Alfa Romeo


Alfa Romeo




Alfa Romeo


Alfa Romeo









Chiron immediately took the lead of the race. At the end of the first lap Chiron was leading Lehoux by 50 meters. A little behind them came Etancelin, who was followed by Straight. Hamilton, Comotti, Zanelli, Sommer, Brunet and Minozzi.
      On the second lap Menco went off the road at the Marabout corner. The Maserati was damaged but the driver survived unhurt from the incident. At the end of the lap Brunet made a fast pit stop.
      On the third lap Lehoux as well had to make a fast pit stop to adjust the brakes but on the next lap he had advanced back to fourth position behind Chiron, Etancelin and Hamilton.
      On the fifth lap Lehoux caught Hamilton and tried to find a way by. At the end of the lap the gap was just one second between them. Race leader Chiron had opened up the gap to Etancelin to 19 seconds. The race order after five laps looked like this:
1. Chiron (Alfa Romeo)14m38s(130.6 km/h)
2. Etancelin (Maserati)14m57s
3. Hamilton (Maserati)15m01s
4. Lehoux (Alfa Romeo)15m02s
5. Straight (Maserati)15m20s
6. Comotti (Alfa Romeo)15m11s?
7. Minozzi (Alfa Romeo)
8. Zanelli (Alfa Romeo)
9. Soffietti (Alfa Romeo)
10. Biondetti (Maserati)
11. Sommer (Maserati)
12. Hellé-Nice (Alfa Romeo)
13. Corsi (Maserati)
14. Brunet (Bugatti)

On the sixth lap Lehoux passed Hamilton for third position. Etancelin was Lehoux's next target and the Scuderia Ferrari driver passed him on the ninth lap for second place. Hamilton had tyre trouble and had made a pit stop that pushed him back to eighth position. Scuderia Ferrari driver Comotti had managed to pass Straight to take over fourth position. Meanwhile Hellé-Nice had engine problems and had to make a pit stop.
      After 10 laps Chiron was leading Lehoux by 33 seconds. Chiron had made the best lap of the race so far with a time of 2m51s (134.1 km/h). The situation was as follows:
1. Chiron (Alfa Romeo)29m03s(131.6 km/h)
2. Lehoux (Alfa Romeo)29m36s
3. Etancelin (Maserati)29m39s
4. Comotti (Alfa Romeo)29m51s
5. Straight (Maserati)29m52s
6. Minozzi (Alfa Romeo)31m17s
7. Zanelli (Alfa Romeo)31m23s
8. Hamilton (Maserati)31m42s
9. Soffietti (Alfa Romeo)31m54s
10. Biondetti (Maserati)32m20s
11. Sommer (Maserati)
12. Corsi (Maserati)
13. Brunet (Bugatti)
14. Hellé-Nice (Alfa Romeo)

Hellé-Nice had to retire after some 10 laps due to a damaged rear axle on her Monza. After 15 laps Chiron held a 20 seconds lead over his team mate Lehoux, who was closely followed by Etancelin. The race order looked like this:
1. Chiron (Alfa Romeo)43m44s(131.1 km/h)
2. Lehoux (Alfa Romeo)44m04s
3. Etancelin (Maserati)44m05s
4. Straight (Maserati)44m30s
5. Comotti (Alfa Romeo)44m36s
6. Hamilton (Maserati)
7. Minozzi (Alfa Romeo)
8. Soffietti (Alfa Romeo)

Sommer in 11th position made a 40 seconds pit stop but he was soon back in the pit to retire his Maserati due to either a clutch trouble or brake failure.
      The fight for second position continued and on the 18th lap Etancelin passed Lehoux and opened up a 200 meter gap to him. In doing so Etancelin equalled Chiron's fastest lap of 2m51s. The order after 20 laps was:
1. Chiron (Alfa Romeo)58m04s(131.6 km/h)
2. Etancelin (Maserati)58m25s
3. Lehoux (Alfa Romeo)58m33s
4. Straight (Maserati)59m08s
5. Comotti (Alfa Romeo)59m22s
6. Hamilton (Maserati)1h01m18s
7. Minozzi (Alfa Romeo)1h01m44s
8. Soffietti (Alfa Romeo)
9. Zanelli (Alfa Romeo)
10. Biondetti (Maserati)
11. Brunet (Bugatti)
12. Corsi (Maserati)

Chiron made the 22nd lap in 2m49s (135.7 km/h) and Lehoux soon afterwards equalled that lap time. The battle between Lehoux and Etancelin continued. On the 24th lap Lehoux managed to take back second place from his rival. The situation after 25 laps:
1. Chiron (Alfa Romeo)1h12m21s(132.1 km/h)
2. Lehoux (Alfa Romeo)1h13m00s
3. Etancelin (Maserati)1h13m03s
4. Comotti (Alfa Romeo)
5. Straight (Maserati)
6. Hamilton (Maserati)
7. Minozzi (Alfa Romeo)
8. Soffietti (Alfa Romeo)
9. Biondetti (Maserati)
10. Zanelli (Alfa Romeo)
11. Brunet (Bugatti)
12. Corsi (Maserati)

Hamilton had a puncture and stopped for a new tyre and fuel, dropping to eighth position.
      Chiron was leading by a good margin and the main interest of the race was the duel between Lehoux and Etancelin, the two drivers remaining within a few seconds from each other. Behind them there was a fight between Comotti and Straight for fourth position. Straight then made a stop for new wheels and new glasses, losing a minute.
      Corsi's race ended after 29 laps with a burst oil pipe and a spin at the 45° corner after the main straight. The order at half-distance looked like this:
1. Chiron (Alfa Romeo)1h26m42s(132.2 km/h)
2. Lehoux (Alfa Romeo)1h27m25s
3. Etancelin (Maserati)1h27m27s
4. Comotti (Alfa Romeo)1h28m53s
5. Straight (Maserati)1h29m54s
6. Minozzi (Alfa Romeo)1h32m00s
7. Soffietti (Alfa Romeo)
8. Hamilton (Maserati)
9. Biondetti (Maserati)
10. Zanelli (Alfa Romeo)

On the 32nd lap a rear tyre burst on Lehoux' Alfa Romeo. The pit stop was fast but he lost his second position to Etancelin. The race order after 35 laps was:
1. Chiron (Alfa Romeo)1h40m59s(132.5 km/h)
2. Etancelin (Maserati)1h42m06s
3. Lehoux (Alfa Romeo)1h44m32s
4. Comotti (Alfa Romeo)1h44m35s
5. Straight (Maserati)1h46m03s
6. Minozzi (Alfa Romeo)
7. Soffietti (Alfa Romeo)
8. Hamilton (Maserati)
9. Biondetti (Maserati)
10. Zanelli (Alfa Romeo)
11. Brunet (Bugatti)

Hamilton's Maserati had a leaking tank and was losing fuel and the driver was forced to call it a day for safety reasons. The pit stops for refuelling and wheel changes followed each other. On the 37th lap, Etancelin refueled and changed tyres without losing his second position. Chiron was now leading by a full lap. The race order after 40 laps:
1. Chiron (Alfa Romeo)1h55m32s(132.3 km/h)
2. Etancelin (Maserati)1h59m02s
3. Comotti (Alfa Romeo)1h59m27s
4. Lehoux (Alfa Romeo)
5. Straight (Maserati)
6. Minozzi (Alfa Romeo)
7. Soffietti (Alfa Romeo)
8. Biondetti (Maserati)
9. Zanelli (Alfa Romeo)
10. Brunet (Bugatti)

Chiron made a 1m12s routine pit stop for fuel and two new rear tyres returning to the race behind Etancelin who thus unlapped himself. Immediately afterwards the unfortunate Lehoux had another tyre failure dropping back to fourth behind Comotti. (Note 3)
      Lehoux pushed hard after his stop and on the 42nd lap, he managed to retake 3rd place from Comotti, who then made his routine pit stop, dropping to fifth behind Straight.
      After 45 laps Chiron was leading by 2m14s over Etancelin, who had a charging Lehoux 18 seconds behind him. The race order looked like this:
1. Chiron (Alfa Romeo)2h11m50s(130.5 km/h)
2. Etancelin (Maserati)2h14m04s
3. Lehoux (Alfa Romeo)2h14m32s
4. Straight (Maserati)
5. Comotti (Alfa Romeo)
6. Soffietti (Alfa Romeo)
7. Minozzi (Alfa Romeo)
8. Zanelli (Alfa Romeo)
9. Biondetti (Maserati)

Unbelievable it seems that Lehoux had yet another tyre failure, dropping to fifth position behind Straight and Comotti. The situation after 50 laps:
1. Chiron (Alfa Romeo)2h26m03s(130.8 km/h)
2. Etancelin (Maserati)2h29m11s
3. Straight (Maserati)2h29m42s
4. Comotti (Alfa Romeo)
5. Lehoux (Alfa Romeo)
6. Minozzi (Alfa Romeo)
7. Soffietti (Alfa Romeo)
8. Zanelli (Alfa Romeo)
9. Biondetti (Maserati)
10. Brunet (Bugatti)

Now it was Comotti's turn to suffer from a burst tyre and the two Scuderia Ferrari drivers swapped positions once again, Lehoux taking over fourth position. After 55 laps Chiron had lapped Etancelin who had had brake trouble during the second part of the race and now was only 20 seconds in front of Straight. The race order after 55 laps looked like this:
1. Chiron (Alfa Romeo)2h40m48s(130.7 km/h)
2. Etancelin (Maserati)2h44m15s
3. Straight (Maserati)2h44m35s
4. Lehoux (Alfa Romeo)
5. Comotti (Alfa Romeo)
6. Minozzi (Alfa Romeo)
7. Zanelli (Alfa Romeo)
8. Biondetti (Maserati)
9. Brunet (Bugatti)

The hot conditions must have put great strain on the tyres because now Straight suffered a puncture as well and fell back to fourth behind Lehoux. With six laps to go Soffietti retired his Alfa Romeo Monza.
      Chiron took the flag to be congratulated by the Sultan and to receive the traditional wreath of flowers. Etancelin finished second a lap behind (see below) with Lehoux third. According to Echo de Alger Lehoux suffered yet another tyre failure on the last lap but could bring the car to the flag.



1.30Louis ChironScuderia FerrariAlfa RomeoTipo B/P32.6S-8602h55m42.4s
2.16Philippe EtancelinP. EtancelinMaserati8CM3.0S-8592h56m23s
3.4Marcel LehouxScuderia FerrariAlfa RomeoTipo B/P32.6S-8592h58m07s
4.12Whitney StraightWhitney Straight Ltd./Maserati8CM3.0S-858
5.10Gianfranco ComottiScuderia FerrariAlfa RomeoTipo B/P32.6S-858
6.24Giovanni MinozziScuderia SienaAlfa RomeoMonza2.3S-857
7.14Juan ZanelliJ. ZanelliAlfa RomeoMonza2.6S-8?
8.8Clemente BiondettiGruppo Genovese San GiorgioMaserati26M2.8S-8?
9.26Robert BrunetR. BrunetBugattiT512.3S-8?
DNF6Luigi SoffiettiScuderia SienaAlfa RomeoMonza2.6S-854
DNF18Hugh HamiltonWhitney Straight Ltd.Maserati8CM3.0S-842fuel tank
DNF28Secondo CorsiS. CorsiMaserati26M2.8S-829oil pipe
DNF20Raymond SommerR. SommerMaserati8CM3.0S-815?clutch
DNF22Mlle "Hellé-Nice"Mlle "Hellé-Nice"Alfa RomeoMonza2.3S-810+rear axle
Fastest lap: Louis Chiron (Alfa Romeo) on lap 22 in 2m49.2s = 135.5 km/h (84.2 mph)
Winner's medium speed: 130.5 km/h (81.1 mph)
Pole position lap speed: 135.7 km/h (84.3 mph)
Weather: hot and sunny, a bit windy.
Pit stops summary:
Louis Chiron (Alfa Romeo)1 stop1m12s
Philippe Etancelin (Maserati)1 stop
Marcel Lehoux (Alfa Romeo)4 stops5m22s
Whitney Straight (Maserati)4 stops1m54s
Gianfranco Comotti (Alfa Romeo)3 stops4m40s
Giovanni Minozzi (Alfa Romeo)1 stop2m30s
Juan Zanelli (Alfa Romeo)1 stop2m22s
Clemente Biondetti (Maserati)2 stops5m34s
Hugh Hamilton (Maserati)4 stops6m42s
Raymond Sommer (Maserati)1 stop    40s

In retrospect:
A results confusion: While all contemporary newspapers agreed on Chiron's winning time they differed widely regarding Etancelin's and Lehoux's results. Thus Echo de Paris, Le Figaro, Le Matin and El Mundo Deportivo give 2h56m23s for Etancelin and 2h58m07s for Lehoux.
      L'Auto and Motor Sport give 2h56m32.6s for Etancelin and Automobil-Revue and Il Littoriale the same time rounded off. For Lehoux L'Auto gives 2h56m23.8s, Il Littoriale the same time rounded off and Motor Sport 2h57m23s.
      All the newspapers agree that both Chiron and Etancelin did 60 laps while Lehoux did 59. Luckily L'Auto published intermediate times as well as the speed for the leader for every 5th lap so Chiron's intermediate times can easily be controlled. While Etancelin's times cannot be controlled the same way the given times correspond well to the race events and the time intervals after the pit stop are consistent 15m02s, 15m11s and 15m00s for laps 45-50-55. We can therefore assume that L'Auto's intermediate times are correct. However, looking at Etancelin's time from lap 55 to the flag it is, depending on source, 12m17s or even less. That is a totally impossible time as he would have gone 20 seconds a lap faster than Chiron's lap record. So it is clear Etancelin did just four laps in that time interval or 59 laps in total before being flagged.
      But using 59 laps for Etancelin and the L'Auto etc. variant of the results that creates a new dilemma as it puts Lehoux in front of Etancelin in the results (Lehoux 2h56m23s vs. Etancelin 2h56m32s), unless one can prove Lehoux did only 58 laps and there is nothing to indicate that. I have therefore used the Echo de Paris etc. results here even if the other variant was given by the pure sports magazines.

1. Compagnie de Navigation Paquet "Djenne" 1931, 8799 BRT, was scuttled by Germans at Marseille 1944, returned to service after the war and was scrapped in 1966.

2. Compagnie de Navigation Paquet "Azrou" 1939, 2997 BRT, was sunk by the British submarine HMS Unison in 1942.

3. Note that the table above is not showing the situation for a specific time but rather list the cars as they pass the line after 40 laps. Thus, the former event, Chiron's stop, cannot be seen from the table as he already had done 40 laps, the table still showing a 3m30s gap between Chiron and Etancelin. On the other hand Lehoux's stop is included in the table (dropping to 4th) even if it happened later, as he was a lap behind so the event happened before HE passed 40 laps.

Primary sources researched for this article:
L'AUTO, Paris
Echo de Alger, Alger
Echo de Paris, Paris
Le Figaro, Paris
Le Matin, Paris
El Mundo Deportivo, Barcelona
Il Littoriale, Roma
The Motor, London
Motor Sport, London

Star 21 May 1934: The B.A.R.C. Whitsun Meeting was held at Brooklands.
The handicap races were won by D. A. Aldington (Frazer Nash 1.5 litre), Mrs K. Petre (Bugatti 2.0 litre), A. J. Cormack (Alta 1.1 litre), W. E. Harker (Harker Special 1.5 litre), R. T. Horton (M.G. 1.1 litre), Earl Howe (Bugatti 2.3 litre), J. W. Lucas (Riley 1.1 litre), L. Eccles (Bugatti 2.3 litre), N. Embiricos (Bugatti 2.3 litre) and W. G. Everitt (M.G. 0.7 litre).

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Click here for biography of Ferdinand Porsche


© 2019 Leif Snellman, Felix Muelas - Last updated: 02.07.2019