ENZO FERRARI’S PASSION. Over 4,000 Ferrari Fans descended on the company’s headquarters to celebrate the 70th anniversary of the famous marque
“Rosso 70” Spectacular
Just over 70 years ago, Enzo Anselmo Ferrari resumed his career in the auto industry following the conclusion of the second world war. The entrepreneur’s great passion was designing racing cars—first for Alfa Romeo and then for his own company.
In March 1947, Enzo took the very first official Ferrari—the iconic 125 S—out for a test drive. It went well. The marque scored its first win that year, at the Rome Grand Prix. Ferrari went on to notch victories at the Mille Miglia in 1948, the 24 hours of Le Mans in 1949 and the British Grand Prix in 1951. In 1952 and 1953, Ferrari driver Alberto Ascari won the world racing championship.
In 2017, Ferrari S.p.A. celebrated its 70th year as a carmaker by holding glamorous events worldwide. There were Ferrari car shows, concours and racing events all over. And all of the Ferrari importers and their dealers held events in their respective countries.
Carmen meets Ferrari
The biggest party of them all took place in Italy on the weekend of September 9-10. More than 4,000 Ferrari fans descended on the company’s headquarters in Maranello in the north of the country to celebrate “Rosso 70.”
The spectacular 70th Anniversary Celebration Ceremony at the Fiorano Circuit in Maranello began with a speech by Ferrari chairman and CEO Sergio Marchionne, who paid tribute to the founder’s core values. A mezzo soprano sang “L’Amour est un Oiseau Rebelle” from Bizet’s Carmen. Actor Liam Cunningham gave a monologue about the passion for driving. Jamiroquai played some live—and very loud! —funk and acid jazz. Topping it all off, the impressive “Ferrari Setanta” came to a growling grandstand finish amid an emotional, ear-splitting, pyrotechnic spectacle starring a plethora of revved-up Ferrari models.
But the real highpoint of the show was a tribute to the company’s legendary Formula One drivers—past and present. Although Sebastian Vettel and Kimi Raikkonen, Ferrari’s current top drivers, made brief appearances on stage, the biggest roar of the evening was reserved for someone who couldn’t be there.
The drivers salute their fans
While an incessant downpour was drenching the circuit outside, there wasn’t a dry eye in the house as a moving presentation honoring Michael Schumacher unfolded. The segment summed up the incredible career of Ferrari’s greatest F1 hero. The only driver in history to win seven F1 world championships, five of them consecutively, “Schumi” was seriously injured in a skiing accident in 2013. “#keep fighting Michael” was the defiant and hopeful message at the end of a presentation that brought a proud and enthusiastic audience to its feet.
It was in the 1950s that, having established itself as a winner on the world’s racing circuits, Ferrari began producing cars for road use.
“There wasn’t a dry eye in the house as a moving presentation honoring Michael Schumacher unfolded”
The rich and famous lined up for a chance to purchase one of the company’s dazzling vehicles.
There were plenty of eager bidders on hand when Ferrari and RM Sotheby’s teamed up to hold “Leggende e Passione,” an auction of Ferraris whose owners had included Keith Richards of The Rolling Stones, during the Saturday afternoon preceding the big show. Eventually, thirty-eight cars were sold for a total of US$74.5 million. The highlight was a LaFerrari Aperta that sold for US$8.3 million to benefit Save the Children.
On the morning of Sunday, September 10 DA MAN was among a group of international media invited to visit the Ferrari factory and, later, the nearby Ferrari Museum. At more than 250,000 square meters, the factory’s 45 buildings house about 3,000 workers. The factory has been designed to be very efficient and “green,” as highlighted by the number of plants that grow inside the factory as well as the use of natural lighting throughout the buildings.
The drivers salute their fans
Meticulous attention to detail and testing goes into each process of building a Ferrari. Workers have 30 minutes per stage of assembly for the V8 models, while each stage of assembly for the V12 models takes one hour. Each day, Ferrari rolls out 12 V8 models and eight V12 models from its production line.
Designed in 2006 and completed in 2009, the striking modern addition to the Ferrari manufacturing compound was designed by Ateliers Jean Nouvel, a Paris-based architecture firm. A new assembly facility, showrooms, offices and retail space are unified under a large, louvered roof.
The new building is located in the historic part of the compound. While the old buildings remain, for the most part, untouched, their facades are clad in reflective red panels wherever the new building borders onto them. Additionally, the facade of the old plant is clad in reflective red steel sheets.
The principal materials used for the exterior of the new buildings are stainless steel with a mirror finish, glass and red-painted steel panels. The glass modules are composed of a reflective glass to approximate the mirrored steel, as well as to control solar penetration.
The roof is made of mirrored stainless steel sheets that are positioned at an angle relative to the roof plane to reflect light and images of the sky to the spaces beneath. Some of the louvers also have images and logos printed on their upper face, which are reflected into the interiors of the buildings.
Intended as spaces for circulation and recreation, a series of gardens are located within and around the buildings of the compound. A number of other new buildings by notable architects have been added to the compound in recent years, such as the Ferrari wind tunnel designed by Renzo Piano and an office building by Massimiliano Fuksas. Streets within the Ferrari facility are named after the marque’s famous racing drivers from the past.
“In the Ferrari Museum, visitors have the chance to get a taste of the kind of exhilarating driving that F1 drivers experience during grands prix”
In the Ferrari Museum, visitors have the chance to sit in a semi-professional Formula 1 simulator and get a taste of the kind of exhilarating driving that F1 drivers experience during a grand prix. After a short briefing, you get into the cockpit and begin a virtual experience.
“Infinite Red,” an exhibition at the museum, showcases the 70-year history of the prancing horse with some of Maranello’s most exclusive creations for track and road. The Formula One cars on display have a long series of victories to their name: From the 500 F2, with which Alberto Ascari won Ferrari’s first world drivers’ title in 1952, to the F2004, the Ferrari that won the most GPs in history (15 like the F2002) and concluded Michael Schumacher’s epic run of world titles, and finally the F2008, which won the world constructors’ championship.
Onlookers of an exciting presentation
Among the GT cars, visitors can admire various models from the 250 family, such as the 250 GT Berlinetta “Tdf,” which dominated races in the second half of the 1950s, its evolution the 250 GT Berlinetta SWB and the 250 GTO, a collectors’ favourite. Then down to the present, the exhibition features a number of limited special series such as the F50, the Enzo and the latest, LaFerrari, also present in the nonhomologated FXX K version.
Back at the Fiorano Circuit, the launch of the 2017 Concorso D’Eleganza was underway. This event showcased some of the most beautiful and significant cars produced by the Cavallino Rampante. It featured 120 GT and sport prototype cars from all over the world, while a number of magnificent open-wheel race cars were on display in an exhibition accompanying the Concorso. It was with the announcement of the best of show in GT and competition that the festivities came to a close. And so ended the stylish and emotional celebrations in Maranello of Ferrari’s anniversary. Here’s to the next 70 years!