Competing in the 2018 Mille Miglia with a concorso winner
We originally planned to have only three installments of our series on Mille Miglia participants, and we’ve managed to cover some great stories about a number of great classic cars. But then we heard that a very special car was also entering the race. It’s a car that looks like a sculpture, and that has a rich and vibrant history. It has been brought back to its former glory and has celebrated victories in several concours, including the Concorso d’Eleganza di Villa d’Este. We’re talking about the Alfa Romeo 6C 1750 GS Aprile from the Collezione Lopresto.
The car was built in 1931 as a racer with Zagato chassis and body. This was one of the legendary designs – one that has passed the test of time and that is still celebrated at the Mille Miglia. After seven years however, this particular car came into the possession of an Italian count, who had something different in mind. He brought the car to Savona and commissioned the Aprile workshop to create a completely different design.
From a visual point of view, the car could be described as a mixture between the classic design and a monoposto. The main body looks like a cigar or torpedo, but the wheels are covered by teardrop fenders. With lights integrated into the front fenders and a fluid body shape, the Aprile design is seamless, remarkable and one of a kind.
The car still looks spectacular. After being neglected for years and then rediscovered in a Swiss garage, it was brought back to life thanks to meticulous research by its owner Corrado Lopresto, and the craftsmanship of restorer Dino Cognolato. As a result of their efforts, the Alfa has collected several accolades, including victory at the Concorso d’Eleganza di Villa d’Este in 2014.
And now the Alfa Romeo 6C 1750 GS Aprile has signed up for this year’s race with the scuderia of The Classic Car Trust, giving spectators a rare chance to see a major concours winner competing in the Mille Miglia. We talked to Duccio Lopresto, who will join his father Corrado at the start in Brescia.
Q: You have several cars in the Collezione Lopresto that would qualify for the Mille Miglia. When did you decide on this one?
A: When Fritz Kaiser asked us to participate, we couldn’t think past this very special Alfa Romeo.
Q: The car looks like a work of art: fluent lines, but also a little fragile – so how does it drive?
A: It’s fantastic fun to drive. And fast! The feeling you get from a 1930s car is incomparable.
Q: Have you driven it in similar situations before?
A: Yes, my dad has driven it on some Northern Italian tours over the years.
Q: Did you modify the car to make it more reliable for the Mille Miglia? The combination of fast stages and traffic jams during the Mille scares a lot of drivers.
A: No, we haven’t touched or modified any of the original components.
Q: What’s the most important piece of gear that you’ll be taking along for the Alfa?
A: The original tools from the 1931 Alfa Romeo 6C 1750 GS Aprile.
All pictures courtesy of Lopresto Collection.