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II CIRCUITO DI LUCCA
(Voiturette 1500cc)

Lucca (I), 6 September 1936
30 laps x 2.35 km (1.46 mi) = 70.5 km (43.8 mi)



No.DriverEntrantCarTypeEngine

2Guglielmo CarraroliG. CarraroliMaserati4CM1.1S-4
4Ferdinando BarbieriScuderia MaremmanaMaserati4CM1.5S-4
6Alberto PaneraiA. PaneraiMaserati4CM1.5S-4DNA - did not appear
8Luigi VilloresiOfficine A. MaseratiMaserati6CM1.5S-6DNA - did not appear
10Sergio BantiScuderia MaremmanaMaserati4CS1.5S-4
12Moris BergaminiScuderia MaremmanaMaserati4CM1.1S-4
14Ferdinando RighettiVittorio StanguelliniMaserati4CS1.5S-4
16Ettore BiancoE. BiancoMaserati4CM1.5S-4
18Carlo Felice TrossiOfficine A. MaseratiMaserati6CM1.5S-6
20Agostino ProsperiScuderia ImperoMaserati4CM1.5S-4DNA - did not appear
22Vittorio BelmondoV. BelmondoMaserati4CM1.5S-4
24Dino GrilliD. GrilliDelageSpl.1.1DNA - did not appear
26Mario ColiniScuderia ImperoMaserati4CM1.5S-4DNA - did not appear



Trossi fastest Maserati driver

by Leif Snellman
Bianco held an early lead until passed by Trossi with the works Maserati 6CM who went on to win their race. Bianco's car suffered ignition problems and was passed by Belmondo and Barbieri as well.
The Circuit of Lucca in Tuscany was for the second time raced on the beautiful, tight 2.35 km street circuit on the outskirts and rampants of the walled medieval town center (see the 1935 race for details about the circuit). This time the event included a 30 lap 1500cc voiturette race.
Entries:
The eight car field consisted entirely of Italian drivers in Maserati cars with count Trossi racing the only independent suspension 6CM for the works team. Giacomo de Rham's Scuderia Maremmana entered three cars, two 1.5 liter cars for Ferdinando Barbieri and Sergio Banti and a 1.1 liter car for Moris Bergamini.
Practice:
Practice took place at 2:30 to 5:30 p.m. on Friday and 6:00 to 9:00 a.m. on Saturday. Bianco was fastest during the first practice session with a time of 1m29.6s It seems that Eugenio Fontana took part in that practice session in Banti's car and Gino Rovere in Carraroli's car.
      In the second session Bianco bettered his time to 1m29s flat to take pole position. The rest of the practice times can be seen in the grid below.
Race:
The weather was not the best and the skies opened at noon but the rain did not hinder the stands and spectator areas from being filled. Shortly before 3:30 p.m. Mussolini's daughter Contessa Edda Ciano arrived in a car and the race was ready to begin.
Pole Position
2
Carraroli

Maserati
1m34.6s

22
Belmondo

Maserati
1m30.0s

16
Bianco

Maserati
1m29.0s

12
Bergamini

Maserati
1m37.2s

4
F Barbieri

Maserati
1m36.2s

18
Trossi

Maserati
1m36.2s

10
Banti

Maserati


14
Righetti

Maserati
1m43.0s

As General Vaccaro, president of the RACI, dropped the flag at 3:30 p.m. Bianco took the lead at the start followed by Belmondo and Trossi. Trossi was soon past Belmondo and started to challenge Bianco. Bianco held on to his lead until the ninth lap but then Trossi found a way past to take over the lead and to dominate the rest of the race. Bianco's second position seemed secured until about lap 20 when ignition problems forced him to slow down and Belmondo took over second and Barbieri passed him as well for third position. Eventually Bianco had to make a pit stop and thus got lapped by Trossi, who went on to take the chequered flag 42.8s in front of Belmondo with Barbieri a further 29.4s behind. Bianco managed to hold on to his fourth position with Carraroli and Righetti following a lap behind.

Results

Pos.No.DriverEntrantCarTypeEngineLapsTime/StatusDiff

1.18Carlo Felice TrossiOfficine A. MaseratiMaserati6CM1.5S-63046m14.6s
2.22Vittorio BelmondoV. BelmondoMaserati4CM1.5S-43046m57.4s+ 42.8s
3.4Ferdinando BarbieriScuderia MaremmanaMaserati4CM1.5S-43047m26.8s+ 1m12.2s
4.16Ettore BiancoE. BiancoMaserati4CM1.5S-429
5.2Guglielmo CarraroliG. CarraroliMaserati4CM1.1S-428
6.14Ferdinando RighettiVittorio StanguelliniMaserati4CS1.5S-428
DNF12Moris BergaminiScuderia MaremmanaMaserati4CM1.1S-417mechanical
DNF10Sergio BantiScuderia MaremmanaMaserati4CS1.1S-42mechanical
Fastest lap: Vittorio Belmondo (Maserati) on lap 26 in 1m29.6s = 94.4 km/h (58.7 mph)
Winner's medium speed: 91.5 km/h (56.8 mph)
Pole position lap speed: 95.1 km/h (59.1 mph)
Weather: cloudy, damp



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II COPPA EDDA CIANO
II CIRCUITO DI LUCCA

Lucca (I), 6 September 1936
50 laps x 2.35 km (1.46 mi) = 117.5 km (73.0 mi)



No.DriverEntrantCarTypeEngine

24Vittorio BelmondoV. BelmondoAlfa RomeoTipoB/P33.2S-8DNA - did not appear
26Sergio BantiScuderia MaremmanaAlfa RomeoMonza2.3S-8
28Antonio BrivioScuderia FerrariAlfa Romeo8C-353.8S-8
30Egidio GallinariE. GallinariBugattiT512.3S-8
32Mario TadiniScuderia FerrariAlfa Romeo8C-353.8S-8
34Ferdinando BarbieriScuderia MaremmanaMaserati6C-343.7S-6
36Gianni BattagliaG. BattagliaAlfa RomeoTipo B/P32.9S-8
38Giacomo de RhamScuderia MaremmanaMaserati8CM3.0S-8
40Pietro GhersiScuderia TorinoMaserati6C-343.7S-6DNA - did not appear
42Clemente BiondettiScuderia MaremmanaAlfa RomeoTipo B/P32.9S-8
44Carlo Felice TrossiScuderia TorinoMaseratiV8RI4.8V-8
46Carlo PintacudaScuderia FerrariAlfa Romeo8C-353.8S-8



Scuderia Ferrari dominates minor event

by Leif Snellman
The three Scuderia Ferrari cars were in their own class and were allowed to race each other to the joy of the spectators while voiturette race vinner Trossi struggled with the V8 Maserati. Early leader Brivio had to retire leaving Pintacuda and Tadini to fight for the victory. Tadini took the victory after Pintacuda struck trouble.
The event raced for the second time in the medieval town of Lucca in Tuscany was named after Benito Mussolini's daughter Contessa Edda Ciano, who served as goodmother for the event (see the 1935 race for details about the circuit). Unlike 1935 this was a straight 50 lap race final without any heats. Instead a voiturette race had been added to the event (see above).
Entries:
Scuderia Ferrari sent three Alfa Romeo 8C-35s for their drivers Antonio Brivio, Mario Tadini and Carlo Pintacuda. The radiator plates were color coded. It is not possible to get the exact colors from black and white photos but the radiator plate of Tadini's car was white, Brivio's light colored, possibly yellow, and Pintacuda's dark (green or blue?).
      Giacomo de Rham entered no less than four cars under the Scuderia Maremmana name. Clemente Biondetti raced the early series Alfa Romeo Tipo B/P3 two-seater (#5001) as de Rham's 1934 spec Tipo B/P3 (#50010) was under repair. Ferdinando Barbieri raced an ex Scuderia Subalpina 6-cylinder Maserati (#3025), Sergio Banti de Rham's Alfa Romeo Monza and de Rham himself a Maserati 8CM with independent front suspension.
      Gianni Battaglia entered a late series TipoB/P3 as well (#50009). Scuderia Torino entered its Maserati V8 "Ruote Independenti" (#4502) for Carlo Felice Trossi and Egidio Gallinari raced a Bugatti T51.
Practice:
Practice took place at 2:30 to 5:30 p.m. on Friday and 6:00 to 9:00 a.m. on Saturday. Tadini was fastest during Friday practice setting a time of 1m27.8s He was followed by Battaglia 1m30.4s, Biondetti 1m31.6s, Banti 1m37s, de Rahm 1m46s and Barbieri 1m47.4s. Pintacuda made a few laps as well.
      The three Scuderia Ferrari drivers dominated the second practice session to take the front row of the grid with Tadini fastest to take the pole with a time of 1m24.0s. The other times can be seen in the grid below.
Race:
The weather was not the best but that did not hinder lots of spectators from gathering for the event. After the voiturette race had been won by count Trossi (see above) it was time for the main race in which Trossi would appear again. Banti had also already taken part in the voiturette race.
Pole Position
28
Brivio

Alfa Romeo
1m26.8s

46
Pintacuda

Alfa Romeo
1m24.4s

32
Tadini

Alfa Romeo
1m24.0s

36
Battaglia

Alfa Romeo
1m29.8s

44
Trossi

Maserati
1m28.0s

38
de Rham

Maserati
1m27.6s

26
Banti

Alfa Romeo
1m34.8s

34
Barbieri

Maserati
1m33.8s

42
Biondetti

Alfa Romeo
1m30.0s

30
Gallinari

Bugatti
1m42.0s

A rain shower had made the asphalt slippery. While the three Scuderia Ferrari drivers took control of the race, their main opponent Trossi came beware of that the slippery conditions did not fit his V8 Maserati. The winner of the voiturette race performed a miracle of acrobatics but he had to see himself falling back through the field.
      On the third lap there was a tragedy as a rear wheel came loose from Egidio Gallinari's Bugatti. The car slid on three wheels for some 200 meters until it came to a safe stop but the wheel continued forward. Spectators threw themselves to the side as the wheel hit the fence, jumped in the air and bounced into the specator area, hitting a 17 year old local youth named Nino Marini Bortoli. He succumbed to his injuries on the way to Misericordia hospital.
      The three Ferrari cars dominated the event with Brivio leading, and they were allowed to fight each other. Sometimes less than three fifths of a second separated the cars. It was a wheel-to-wheel struggle that did not fail to make the crowd wild with enthusiasm.
      Barbieri and Biondetti retired their Maseratis and while the streets had dried up Trossi had lost too much ground to be able to challenge the Scuderia Ferrari cars and he retired after 27 laps. On the same lap Pintacuda took the lead from Brivio. De Rham was the third Scuderia Maremmana retirement and Brivio seems to have fallen back to retire his Alfa Romeo after 36 laps with a fuel pump failure. The race seemed set but then Pintacuda got challenged by Tadini. For three laps Pintacuda resisted the attack. But then on the 34th lap Pintacuda seems to have been forced to do a fast pit stop giving over the lead to Tadini. After his stop Pintacuda tried his best to close in on his team-mate, equalling on the 47th lap the fastest lap time Tadini had made earlier in the race. At the end the gap was down to less than 5 seconds.
      Battaglia in third position was two laps behind and Banti in fourth position six laps behind. Only those four drivers took the flag.

Results

Pos.No.DriverEntrantCarTypeEngineLapsTime/StatusDiff

1.32Mario TadiniScuderia FerrariAlfa Romeo8C-353.8S-8501h12m33.6s
2.46Carlo PintacudaScuderia FerrariAlfa Romeo8C-353.8S-8501h12m38.2s+ 4.6s
3.36Gianni BattagliaG. BattagliaAlfa RomeoTipo B/P32.9S-848
4.26Sergio BantiScuderia MaremmanaAlfa RomeoMonza2.3S-844
DNF28Antonio BrivioScuderia FerrariAlfa Romeo8C-353.8S-836fuel pump
DNF38Giacomo de RhamScuderia MaremmanaMaserati8CM3.0S-828
DNF44Carlo Felice TrossiScuderia TorinoMaseratiV8RI4.8V-827
DNF42Clemente BiondettiScuderia MaremmanaAlfa RomeoTipo B/P32.9S-815
DNF34Ferdinando BarbieriScuderia MaremmanaMaserati6C-343.7S-613
DNF30Egidio GallinariE. GallinariBugattiT512.3S-83lost wheel
Fastest lap: Mario Tadini (Alfa Romeo) on lap 29 & Carlo Pintacuda (Alfa Romeo) on lap 47
                      in 1m22.8s = 102.2 km/h (63.5 mph)
Winner's medium speed: 97.2 km/h (60.4 mph)
Pole position lap speed: 100.7 km/h (62.6 mph)
Weather: cloudy, damp
In retrospect:
Despite having several sources available, thanks to the efforts of H. Etzrodt, G. Prisco and A. Silva, none of the sources have a decent cronological report about the races themselves and there is hardly any agreement about the details and on which lap an event happened. So view the reports above with a bit of scepticism. However, the entry lists and results should be correct. The source for grid times is Paul Sheldon's "black books" and I have not been able to confirm them from any other source.

It seems TipoB/P3 owner Umberto Rossi managed to get access to the organizers archives and several of the chassis numbers in the entry forms are listed in Simon Moore's The Magnificent Monopostos. The book has also a picture of the start, originally from Orzini & Zagari's Scuderia Ferrari 1929-1939.

Primary sources researched for this article:
AUTOMOBIL-REVUE, Bern
La Gazzetta dello Sport, Milano
La Stampa, Torino
RACI - Settimanale, Roma
Also:
Simon Moore The Magnificent Monopostos
Special thanks to:
Giuseppe Prisco
Alessandro Silva



Rosemeyer (Auto Union)Nuvolari (Alfa Romeo)von Delius (Auto Union)

XIV° GRAN PREMIO D'ITALIA

Autodromo di Monza (I), 13 September 1936
72 laps x 7.0 km (4.35 mi) = 504.0 km (313.17 mi)



No.DriverEntrantCarTypeEngine

2Hans StuckAuto Union AGAuto UnionType C6.0V-16
4Bernd RosemeyerAuto Union AGAuto UnionType C6.0V-16
6Achille VarziAuto Union AGAuto UnionType C6.0V-16
8Ernst von DeliusAuto Union AGAuto UnionType C6.0V-16
10Carlo Felice TrossiScuderia TorinoMaseratiV8RI4.8V-8
12Clemente BiondettiScuderia MaremmanaMaserati6C-343.7S-6
14Pietro GhersiScuderia MaremmanaMaserati6C-343.7S-6
16Piero DusioScuderia TorinoMaserati6C-343.7S-6
18Tazio NuvolariScuderia FerrariAlfa Romeo12C-364.1V-12
20Antonio BrivioScuderia FerrariAlfa Romeo12C-364.1V-12DNS - practice crash
20Carlo PintacudaScuderia FerrariAlfa Romeo8C-353.8S-8
22Giuseppe FarinaScuderia FerrariAlfa Romeo12C-364.1V-12
24René DreyfusScuderia FerrariAlfa Romeo12C-364.1V-12



Rosemeyer wins at Monza and becomes European Champion

by Hans Etzrodt
The 14th Gran Premio d'Italia was the last major race of the 1936 European season. Without Mercedes-Benz, who opted not to start, it was a battle between Auto Union, Alfa Romeo and Maserati. After five laps Rosemeyer had taken the lead ahead of Stuck, both in Auto Unions with Nuvolari's Alfa Romeo third followed by Delius and Varzi in Auto Unions, who were ahead of Dreyfus and Farina in Alfa Romeos. The Maseratis of Dusio, Trossi and Biondetti had fallen behind with Ghersi retiring after two laps. The unpopular chicanes were the cause of three accidents, Brivio during practice, Stuck on lap 17 and Farina on lap 58. After 72 laps, Rosemeyer won two minutes ahead of Nuvolari, who was followed by Delius, Dreyfus, Pintacuda, Dusio and Trossi, who had been relieved by Bianco. Rosemeyer had won five races during the season and was the 1936 European Champion.
Special significance was attached to this event as it was the last "grande épreuve" of the year and counted towards the European Championship, along with the Grands Prix of Monaco, Germany and Switzerland, all of which were run to the 750 kg formula. The international sporting calendar had included the Spanish Grand Prix on the Lasarte circuit on September 7. However that event did not take place because the Spanish civil war had commenced on July 17 and motor racing in Spain was suspended for 10 years until 1946.
      The 1936 Italian Grand Prix was held at Monza on the Florio circuit, which was first introduced by Count Vincenzo Florio in 1930, and which was also used for the 1935 race. The course consisted for the most part of the 5.5 km asphalt circuit which connected with the oval course on the back straight where the new Florio Link had been built. It consisted of a sharp left turn leading via a short straight to the oval circuit where a sharp right turn headed towards the South Curve of the oval just before the finish, making a total length of 6.861 km. To slow the fast German cars the organizer installed 5 chicanes for the 1935 race. These were artificial obstacles which changed the length of the Florio course to 6.890 km. For 1936 all five chicanes were modified under the direction of Engineer Furmanik, increasing the circuit's length by 110 meters, which resulted in a lap of exactly 7.0 kilometers. This year the chicanes placed even greater demands on brakes and transmission and the skill of the drivers. Furmanik had altered the chicanes in such a way, that the edges of the road were now bordered with high angled concrete curbs backed by straw bales. The first two chicanes were tight, one before entering Curva Grande, the second at Curva della Roggia. The third chicane was a double S bend before Curva del Vialone. The fourth, which was wider, was before Curva Sud on the oval track. Just past the midpoint of Curva Sud there was a longer bypass, effectively a fast fifth chicane with double S bends.
Entries:
The RACI had received just 13 entries of which four came from Auto Union, with their 6.0-Liter V-16 cars. They were under the leadership of team manager Karl Otto Feuereissen and were to be driven by Hans Stuck, Bernd Rosemeyer, Achille Varzi and Ernst von Delius. Rudolf Hasse and Wilhelm Sebastian were the reserve divers. This was to be Varzi's last race with Auto Union. On Sunday he very nearly overslept and appeared just five minutes before the start of the race. He only drove 11 laps during which he over-revved his engine. When he pitted he refused to carry on with a damaged motor. He had also over-used the brakes in those few laps. By this time Varzi had become addicted to morphine.
      There were four Maseratis, two of which were from Scuderia Torino, a 4.8-liter V-8 for Carlo Felice Trossi and a 3.7-liter 6-cylinder type 6C34 for Pietro Dusio with the reserve driver Ettore Bianco. There were two 6C34s from Scuderia Maremmana from Florenz to be driven by Clemente Biondetti and Pietro Ghersi. Five Alfa Romeos were entered by Scuderia Ferrari, four 12-cylinder cars for Tazio Nuvolari, Guiseppe Farina, René Dreyfus and Antonio Brivio, plus a back-up 8-cylinder car for Carlo Pintacuda the reserve driver. A Bugatti entry by Jean-Pierre Wimille did not arrive since the car could not be prepared in time after the Swiss Grand Prix.
      Daimler-Benz decided not to enter their cars at the Italian Grand Prix and regarded their 1936 racing season to be concluded. The explanation had to lie in the debacle Daimler-Benz encountered at the German and Swiss Grands Prix. In retrospect it is interesting to see how hard Alfa Romeo was working to improve their cars for the last race, displaying great sporting spirit. In comparison Daimler-Benz, instead of improving their cars, made a business decision that they could not afford to lose another race, which they thought they had little chance of winning.
Practice:
Alfa Romeo had suffered a set-back at the preceding Swiss Grand Prix and were preparing well for the last event. Two weeks before the race Alfa Romeo had set up quarters at Monza. Engineer Vittorio Jano supervised tests with the 12-cylinder cars to assess progress from the most recent modifications. The cooling problems which had shown up at the Coppa Acerbo and at the Swiss Grand Prix were successfully eliminated by enlarging the exhaust pipes and installing larger oil coolers. For this race Alfa Romeo had prepared four 12-cylinder cars, all the cars that had been built since Tripoli. Only three of them made the start, since Brivio crashed one during practice.
      On Wednesday Alfa Romeo was very active practicing with Nuvolari, Brivio, Dreyfus and Farina on the track. Brivio set out with a 12-cylinder car, and after the first lap while passing through the second chicane, he put the right front wheel over the curb, as a result of which the car overturned and was flung over the embankment landing upside down. Brivio was buried underneath the damaged car. Inconceivably it took 8 or 9 minutes before the Alfa Romeo team learned about Brivio's situation, when an official on a bicycle rode to the pits and reported the accident. Immediately a group of Auto Union personnel including the German racing doctor Gläser took fire extinguishers and drove to the scene of the accident to free the Italian driver from his dangerous situation. Brivio had suffered shock and several contusions and was immediately brought to the hospital where they treated his injuries including his left arm which had suffered most. The outcome was that he could not start on Sunday. Albeit with only light injuries, on race day Brivio had to sit as a spectator in the pits and the fourth Alfa Romeo became the 8-cylinder driven by Pintacuda.
      Auto Union had arrived on Tuesday and participated in Wednesday's practice but with Hasse and Delius, their only drivers present. Both drove their fastest laps in 3m03.2s equal to 138.309 km/h average speed. Rosemeyer, Stuck and Varzi began their practice on Thursday. Rosemeyer drove a lap in 3m01s and improved later with 2m56.4s at an average of 142.856 km/h. Von Delius recorded a time in 3m01.8s and Hasse 3m03s. Stuck's best time was 2m58.8s at 140.939 km/h average and Varzi's best lap was 3m02s. Nuvolari completed 45 laps without any problems with the ignition system; his fastest lap was in 3m00.6s. Farina drove a lap in 3m10.0s.
      During the afternoon two entertaining incidents took place. Bernd Rosemeyer's wife Elly Beinhorn, the famous aviatrix, was allowed to drive the spare Auto Union racecar, which caused great excitement far and wide. After Bernd explained to her the gearshift and after Elly assured him that she would not go fast, she was push-started. Elly's first lap was slow, but on her second lap of 5 minutes she averaged 85 km/h. After she had climbed out of the car with pride, she was able to talk for hours about her experience.
      Later the Alfa Romeo team invited Bernd Rosemeyer to drive the 12-cylinder Alfa Romeo and Bernd took off delightedly, to the great surprise of Dr. Porsche and Dr. Feuereissen and others who had not known about this. Suddenly Bernd Rosemeyer in the 12-cylinder Alfa Romeo rushed passed the grandstands and acted like it was nothing unusual. Later he talked about how good the steering of the Alfa Romeo was and especially the soft brakes. The designer of the Alfa Romeo cars, Director Vittorio Jano, thanked Rosemeyer for the interest he had taken in his car.
      On Friday all the cars were driven at slower speeds because they had to wear in new brakes. On Saturday, from 9:00 AM, all the cars had to be weighed on the scale at less than the maximum 750 kg. Starting with Scuderia Maremmana: Biondetti's 8-cyl. Maserati was 749 kg and Ghersi's 8-cyl. Maserati was 745 kg. At 9.40 it was Alfa Romeo's turn: Nuvolari's car was 743 kg, Farina's 741 kg, Dreyfus' 744 kg and Pintacuda's 8-cyl. Alfa Romeo 739 kg. At 10.40 it was Maserati's turn with Scuderia Torino: Trossi's 8-cyl. Maserati weighed 740 kg and Dusio's 8-cyl. Maserati was 744 kg. Finally at 11:20 Auto Union: Rosemeyer's car weighed 747 kg, von Delius' 748 kg, Stuck's 742 kg and Varzi's 748 kg
Race:
The race was the last of the four events that counted towards the European Championship, the Grands Prix of Monaco, Germany, Switzerland and Italy. After the first three races, Stuck was leading the Championship with 8 points, while Rosemeyer had 9 points and must have been eager to win the race and the championship. Varzi had 12 points, Sommer 13, Caracciola 14, Brivio and Nuvolari each had 15 and Trossi had 18 points.
      Despite the warm weather, the number of spectators was visibly less than in previous years. Estimated attendance figures varied from over 50,000 to 100,000. The difficult economic times combined with two other popular sporting events in Milan on the same Sunday might have contributed to this decline.
      At 10:30 AM the racecars were pushed by their mechanics in a festive parade past the grandstands to line up at the start. The four red Alfa Romeos of Scuderia Ferrari were in the lead preceded by members of the Italian Automobile Club with large Italian flags and the Italian national anthem was played. Each driver walked beside his car and Nuvolari received the greatest applause. Next in line were the four silver Auto Unions, preceded by three flag carriers with swastika flags. They were accompanied by the German national anthem. At the end of the parade were the four red Maseratis, two of the Scuderia Torino representing Officine Maserati, followed by the two cars of the Scuderia Maremmana. It was a very hot summer day. Grid positions had been decided by practice times and the cars were lined up accordingly, although practice times were released for only six drivers.
Pole Position
18
Nuvolari

Alfa Romeo
3m00.6s

2
Stuck

Auto Union
2m58.8s

4
Rosemeyer

Auto Union
2m56.4s

6
Varzi

Auto Union
3m02.0s

8
von Delius

Auto Union
3m01.8s

24
Dreyfus

Alfa Romeo


20
Pintacuda

Alfa Romeo


22
Farina

Alfa Romeo
3m10.0s

16
Dusio

Maserati

10
Trossi

Maserati

14
Ghersi

Maserati

12
Biondetti

Maserati

When the Propaganda Minister Dino Alfieri lowered the flag at 11:00 AM, Stuck immediately shot into the lead followed by Nuvolari, Rosemeyer, Varzi and Delius. When the cars completed the first lap, Stuck was still in the lead, 50 meters ahead of Nuvolari, with Rosemeyer right behind. After a short gap Varzi was next, followed by Delius, Dreyfus, Farina, Trossi, Pintacuda, Biondetti and Dusio, while Ghersi stopped at his pit with defective plugs. He rejoined the race but retired on the third lap with engine maladies.
      After the second lap Stuck was still leading but Rosemeyer had moved into second place ahead of Nuvolari followed after six seconds by Varzi while the remaining field broke up. After three laps, Stuck increased his gap to Rosemeyer with a lap in 3m05s while Varzi lost his fourth place to Delius. Dreyfus and Farina followed next. By the end of lap 4, Rosemeyer had taken the lead with a lap in3m03s at 137.104 km/h average speed. He was 3 seconds ahead of Stuck and 8 seconds ahead of Nuvolari. Delius held fourth place ahead of Varzi. Rosemeyer's average lap time during the first five laps was 3m06.9s. After 35 kilometers Rosemeyer's race average was 134.872 km/h with the order after 5 laps:
1.Rosemeyer (Auto Union)15m34.4s
2.Stuck (Auto Union)15m37.4s
3.Nuvolari (Alfa Romeo)15m42.2s
4.Delius (Auto Union)15m57.0s
5.Varzi (Auto Union)15m58.8s
6.Dreyfus (Alfa Romeo)16m05.2s
7.Farina (Alfa Romeo)16m07.4s
8.Trossi (Maserati)16m37.6s
9.Pintacuda (Alfa Romeo)16m50.0s
10.Biondetti (Maserati)17m19.0s
11.Dusio (Maserati)17m26.4s

On lap 8 Nuvolari drove a record lap in 3m2.2s at 138.309 km/h average speed and he passed Stuck for second place to frantic applause from the spectators, but he was still eight seconds behind Rosemeyer. On lap 9 the order was Rosemeyer, Nuvolari now 11 second behind, Stuck, von Delius, Varzi , Dreyfus, Farina, Trossi, Pintacuda, Biondetti and Dusio in last place. After 70 km Rosemeyer's average lap time during the last five laps was 3m02.8s and his average speed was 136.318 km/h with the following order after 10 laps:
1.Rosemeyer (Auto Union)30m48.6s
2.Nuvolari (Alfa Romeo)31m00.0s
3.Stuck (Auto Union)31m02.4s
4.Delius (Auto Union)31m25.4s
5.Varzi (Auto Union)31m27.8s
6.Dreyfus (Alfa Romeo)31m39.2s
7.Farina (Alfa Romeo)31m43.4s
8.Trossi (Maserati)32m57.4s
9.Pintacuda (Alfa Romeo)33m02.8s
10.Biondetti (Maserati)34m13.0s1 lap behind
11.Dusio (Maserati)34m28.6s1 lap behind

On lap 11 Rosemeyer drove a new record lap in 3m01.4s at 138.765 km/h average speed. On lap 12 Varzi stopped at the pits with a loss of power from his engine, reportedly due to one bad piston. He remained there for about six minutes and refused to continue. With reserve driver Rudolf Hasse behind the wheel the car rejoined the race but it was now two laps behind. On lap 13 Nuvolari, who had been informed from his pit about Rosemeyer's fast lap, responded with a new record lap in 3m flat at 140 km/h average speed. On lap 14 Rosemeyer, who still had something in reserve, drove an even faster lap in 2m59.6s at 140.311 km/h, which would remain the fastest lap of the race. After 15 laps Farina had passed Dreyfus while Rosemeyer led the race with an average lap time during the last five laps of 3m01.3s. His average speed went up to 137.195 km/h with the field in the following order after 15 laps:
1.Rosemeyer (Auto Union)45m55.2s
2.Nuvolari (Alfa Romeo)46m08.6s
3.Stuck (Auto Union)46m10.8s
4.Delius (Auto Union)46m45.6s
5.Farina (Alfa Romeo)47m18.6s
6.Dreyfus (Alfa Romeo)47m23.2s
7.Trossi (Maserati)49m07.4s1 lap behind
8.Pintacuda (Alfa Romeo)50m56.0s1 lap behind
9.Biondetti (Maserati)51m10.0s1 lap behind
10.Dusio (Maserati)51m41.4s1 lap behind
11.Varzi/Hasse (Auto Union)55m29.6s3 laps behind

When the Varzi/Hasse Auto Union trailed a heavy smoke cloud it retired at the pits and the field was down to ten cars at the beginning of lap 17. While the battle for the lead between Nuvolari and Rosemeyer was in full swing, on the same lap, Stuck in third place followed Nuvolari like a shadow just two seconds behind. Shortly before the third chicane, the double S-bend, Nuvolari overtook the Maserati of Trossi, who was much slower than the Alfas and Auto Unions. Stuck did not want to lose too much time behind the slow Maserati and also passed Trossi before the chicane, but his braking distance was too short and he entered the chicane too fast and his left front wheel crashed into the high concrete curb of the first S-turn. Out of control the car shot to the right, hit the opposite concrete curb, jumped over it, smashed into a tree and bounced back onto the track where it landed on its wheels, next to Stuck who had been catapulted out by the impact. Trossi and Delius, who were following closely, had to stop since the track was blocked by the stricken car and its helpless driver. Officials immediately came to the aid of the injured Stuck, who had crashed in exactly the same way as his young teammate Rudolf Heidel at the driver tests last February. However Heidel had been thrown with his head against the concrete border and was fatally injured. Stuck had fallen on the straw bales, he had facial, leg and arm injuries, a concussion and contusions. Stuck had enormous luck to escape with minor injuries despite his very dangerous fall. The German racing doctor Gläser immediately took care of Stuck, who received great assistance and stayed as the guest of Count Lurani until his recovery. After 140 km Rosemeyer's average lap time during the last five laps was 3m02.6s. He held the lead 13 seconds ahead of Nuvolari at an average speed of 137.404 km/h with the field down to nine cars in the following order after 20 laps:
1.Rosemeyer (Auto Union)1h01m08.0s
2.Nuvolari (Alfa Romeo)1h01m21.4s
3.Delius (Auto Union)1h02m09.0s
4.Farina (Alfa Romeo)1h02m51.6s
5.Dreyfus (Alfa Romeo)1h03m03.6s
6.Trossi (Maserati)1h05m53.0s1 lap behind
7.Pintacuda (Alfa Romeo)1h06m57.4s1 lap behind
8.Biondetti (Maserati)1h08m23.8s2 laps behind
9.Dusio (Maserati)1h09m05.0s2 laps behind

Since changes in the order were no longer taking place, an obvious sense of monotony crept into the race. On lap 24 Rosemeyer was 15 seconds ahead of Nuvolari. On lap 29 Farina stopped at the pits to refuel and change rear tires in 32 seconds. After 30 laps the order of the first three drivers had not changed with Rosemeyer 25 seconds ahead of Nuvolari and von Delius in third place, while Dreyfus was now in fourth place ahead of Farina, followed by Trossi, Pintacuda and Dusio. Biondetti retired his Maserati with a supercharger problem and the field was down to eight cars. After 210 km Rosemeyer's average lap time during the last ten laps was 3m00.0s and he held the lead at 137.674 km/h average with the field in the following order after 30 laps:
1.Rosemeyer (Auto Union)1h31m31.2s
2.Nuvolari (Alfa Romeo)1h31m56.0s
3.Delius (Auto Union)1h33m05.4s
4.Dreyfus (Alfa Romeo)1h34m21.6s
5.Farina (Alfa Romeo)1h34m55.6s1 lap behind
6.Trossi (Maserati)1h38m46.8s2 laps behind
7.Pintacuda (Alfa Romeo)1h39m00.0s2 laps behind
8.Dusio (Maserati)1h43m51.6s4 laps behind

On lap 31 Nuvolari refueled and changed rear wheels in 50 seconds because one wheel locked up and he fell to third place when Delius passed him. On lap 32 Dreyfus stopped to refuel and change rear wheels in 26 seconds, evidence of the speed of the Alfa mechanics, who were just as fast as their German counterparts. On lap 35 Rosemeyer stopped at his pit to refuel and change rear tires in 39 seconds. After 35 laps the order was: Rosemeyer ahead of Delius with Nuvolari third followed by Farina, Dreyfus, Trossi, Pintacuda and Dusio. Delius stopped on lap 36 to refuel, change rear tires and have a leaking supercharger oil pipe repaired. With a delay of 5m56s Delius rejoined the race but had fallen from second to fifth place, while Nuvolari was again second, ahead of Dreyfus and Farina. On lap 39 Farina made another refueling stop in 28s, since the tank of the Alfa held less fuel than the Auto Unions. After 40 laps Rosemeyer led Nuvolari by 1m26s and as it was very unlikely that he would be able to reduce this gap, the chase was over and the sense of monotony was felt even more. After 280 km Rosemeyer's average lap time during the last ten laps was 3m12.1s and he led at 135.934 km/h average speed with the order as follows after 40 laps:
1.Rosemeyer (Auto Union)2h03m32.6s
2.Nuvolari (Alfa Romeo)2h04m58.8s
3.Dreyfus (Alfa Romeo)2h07m24.2s1 lap behind
4.Farina (Alfa Romeo)2h07m50.4s1 lap behind
5.Delius (Auto Union)2h10m28.4s2 laps behind
6.Pintacuda (Alfa Romeo)2h12m30.2s2 laps behind
7.Trossi (Maserati)
8.Dusio (Maserati)

On lap 41 Trossi stopped at the pits because the fuel tank had come loose. On lap 45 Farina stopped at the pits to change the left rear tire, then on the following lap he changed spark plugs in 2m47s and lost his fourth place to von Delius. Around lap 48, Trossi stopped at his pit for 40 minutes, setting a new pit stop record, after which he was relieved by Ettore Bianco, who continued, but drove in very leisurely fashion, creating an annoying obstruction for the other drivers, which was considered grossly irresponsible. Delius was now in fourth place and Dusio was able to pass Trossi, who had only completed 49 laps. Rosemeyer could now take it easy after 350 km when his average lap time during the last ten laps had increased to 3m07.7s while his average race speed was 135.638 km/h when the order was as follows after 50 laps:
1.Rosemeyer (Auto Union)2h34m49.4s
2.Nuvolari (Alfa Romeo)2h36m12.0s
3.Dreyfus (Alfa Romeo)2h39m33.4s1 lap behind
4.Delius (Auto Union)2h41m59.4s2 laps behind
5.Farina (Alfa Romeo)2h44m33.4s3 laps behind
6.Pintacuda (Alfa Romeo)2h44m55.0s3 laps behind
7.Dusio (Maserati)

On lap 55 Dreyfus refueled and changed rear wheels in 27 seconds. Shortly afterwards, on lap 59, Nuvolari did the same in 47 seconds and fell further behind Rosemeyer. On lap 57 Farina crashed at a chicane, damaging the right rear wheel and the rear axle and had no option but to retire. Pintacuda moved one place up, while Dusio was very far behind and was to complete only 59 laps. After 420 km, the order remained the same. Dusio and Trossi were still in the race but many laps behind and completed less than 60 laps. Rosemeyer's average lap time during the last ten laps had been 3m05.4s with an average race speed of 135.688 km/h when the order was as follows after 60 laps:
1.Rosemeyer (Auto Union)3h05m43.2s
2.Nuvolari (Alfa Romeo)3h08m14.8s
3.Dreyfus (Alfa Romeo)3h12m44.4s2 laps behind
4.Delius (Auto Union)3h13m18.2s2 laps behind
5.Pintacuda (Alfa Romeo)3h17m08.4s3 laps behind

To the spectators the monotony must have been almost paralyzing. The only change during the remaining laps happened when Delius slowly closed down the gap to Dreyfus and passed him for third place on lap 66. Rosemeyer won the race ahead of Nuvolari, both on the same lap with a gap of 2m5.3s. During the race Alfa Romeo encountered no problems with the engines, though Farina had to change spark plugs once. The Alfa Romeos stopped twice to change tires and therefore had a one minute disadvantage towards the German cars which changed their tires only once. At the end the crowd was cheering and enthusiastic spectators carried the first three drivers to the grandstand where they were congratulated by Propaganda Minister Dino Alfieri.

Results

Pos.No.DriverEntrantCarTypeEngineLapsTime/StatusDiff

1.4Bernd RosemeyerAuto Union AGAuto UnionType C6.0V-16723h43m25.0s
2.18Tazio NuvolariScuderia FerrariAlfa Romeo12C-364.1V-12723h45m30.6s+ 2m05.6s
3.8Ernst von DeliusAuto Union AGAuto UnionType C6.0V-16703h44m07.2s
4.24René DreyfusScuderia FerrariAlfa Romeo12C-364.1V-12703h44m59.0s
5.20Carlo PintacudaScuderia FerrariAlfa Romeo8C-353.8S-8683h44m11.4s
6.16Piero DusioScuderia TorinoMaserati6C-343.7S-6593h45m13.4s
DNF22Giuseppe FarinaScuderia FerrariAlfa Romeo12C-364.1V-1257crash
7.10C. F. Trossi / E. BiancoScuderia TorinoMaseratiV8RI4.8V-8493h44m59.8s
DNF12Clemente BiondettiScuderia MaremmanaMaserati6C-343.7S-630engine
DNF6A. Varzi / R. HasseAuto Union AGAuto UnionType C6.0V-1616engine
DNF2Hans StuckAuto Union AGAuto UnionType C6.0V-1616crash
DNF14Pietro GhersiScuderia MaremmanaMaserati6C-343.7S-62engine
Fastest lap: Bernd Rosemeyer (Auto Union) on lap 14 in 2m59.6s = 140.3 km/h (87.2 mph)
Winner's medium speed: 135.4 km/h (84.1 mph)
Pole position lap speed: 142.9 km/h (88.8 mph)
Weather: sunshine, warm.
In retrospect:
Bernd Rosemeyer said after the race: "the beginning of the race was rather funny. In practice Stuck, Nuvolari and I had driven below three minutes, so it was to be assumed that there would be a similar chase in the race! But now we all intended to save our brakes with 500 km and with the heat. At the beginning I positioned myself in third place behind Stuck and Nuvolari and did not want to go fast..."
      "My surprise is therefore great when suddenly before a chicane Nuvolari gives a sign with the hand to pass. I returned the sign and do not - so we fight over half a lap a battle of courtesy. Eventually he almost stopped and I simply had to pass. Then I lay behind Stuck, quite happy and I am very satisfied with his pace. All of a sudden Stuck also begins to give hand signs that I should pass. What?! I think, are we playing here bike riding or what is happening? And so I came, against my will, faster to the top than I had actually wanted - but I kept the lead and the brakes also..."

The European Championship final standings after the Italian Grand Prix were: Rosemeyer first with 10 points, Stuck 15 points, Nuvolari 17, Varzi 19, independent driver Sommer 21 and Caracciola 22 points.

Primary sources researched for this article:
Allgemeine Automobil-Zeitung, Berlin
AUTOMOBIL-REVUE, Bern
La Gazzetta dello Sport, Milano
La Stampa, Torino
L'AUTO, Paris
L'Auto Italiana, Torino
Motor Post, Berlin
MOTOR UND SPORT, Pössneck
Motorwelt, DDAC, München
RACI, Roma
Special thanks to:
Ms. Paola Masetta

Star 19 September 1936: Frederick Dixon / Charles Martin (Riley) wins the BRDC 500 Miles handicap race at Brooklands, England



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© 2019 Leif Snellman, Hans Etzrodt, Felix Muelas - Last updated: 27.01.2019