PETROLICIOUS / Fully Ferrari: These Were The Exceptional Race Cars At Finali Mondiali

This past weekend marked the end of Ferrari’s Finali Mondiali racing calendar for 2017, and I had the distinct pleasure of attending the events at Mugello Circuit. Ferrari usually does their F1 testing here, but seeing as they own the place it makes sense that they also use it for other purposes. Laid into the Tuscan hillside, it is a fast course with elevation changes throughout, and it was going to play host once again to some great racing. There are older Ferrari Formula One cars seeing use, a few parade laps, and plenty of celebration, but there is also a good deal of competition from both the amateur and professional side in the racing versions of Ferrari GT cars like the 458 and 488, and the exclusive XX program also participates (recall the most recent addition to that upper crust of Ferrari supercars, the FXX K EVO that was shown for the first time at the event).

It was a great end to the season, and everyone I saw over the course of the long weekend was celebrating, everyone brought with them a fantastic energy, and I had a great time regardless of how much I don’t own a Ferrari race car. There was still plenty for me to do. One has the pleasure to chat with GT racing champions, former Ferrari F1 drivers, and a whole host of other likeminded fans, and I even had a chance to hop into a car myself to be taken around the circuit for a hot lap.

That was the modern, racing-centric side of the event, but let’s continue with something even more special. On display in the paddock area was a bountiful collection of historic Formula One cars, themselves paired with an even larger assembly of sports and Grand Prix cars reflecting some notable periods of Ferraris 70 years of history thus far. Walking through these halls, the cars form a visible timeline, and I never tire of seeing arrangements like this, where you can walk from one decade to another, trace the progress in aerodynamics over time, follow the designs as they inform the ones that replace them in a cycle that’s always ongoing. It was also a good opportunity to look at the Ferrari sports cars in contrast to their formula cars from the same era, spotting similarities among the obvious differences.

Some of the most amazing cars are all lined up in this space, just to name some examples: F40 LM, 275 GTB Competizione, 365 GTB/4 Competizione, 125 S, 126 CK, F333 SP, 512 M, 575 GTC – who wouldn’t have his or her mind blown?

Speaking for myself, I am sold on this event. At first I was skeptical. Of course I enjoy racing of any variety as a rule and as some one petrol in her veins, but having a much stronger connection to classics than the modern machinery, I wasn’t sure this kind of customer-based racing would be the kind of thing for me. I was happy to have those doubts erased though, for when you’re around this much enthusiasm for motorsport it’s hard to not be swept up yourself.

Photography by Laura Kukuk

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