Jump to content


Photo

Achille Varzi


  • Please log in to reply
67 replies to this topic

#1 silver fan

silver fan
  • Member

  • 3,104 posts
  • Joined: March 00

Posted 23 March 2000 - 19:01

I was hoping if someone knows if there has ever been what you could describe as a definative biography of Achille Varzi. I'm interested in learning more about the pre-war era and in particular Varzi, but so far I've turned up a blank, If anybody could point yours truely in the right direction it would be much appreciated.

cheers,
SILVER :cool:

Advertisement

#2 John Cross

John Cross
  • Member

  • 139 posts
  • Joined: March 00

Posted 24 March 2000 - 06:08

Dennis has a good online biography:

http://www.ddavid.co...1/varzi_bio.htm

Leif's site has his career record from 1934 to 1938:

http://www.kolumbus....llman/d6.htm#VA

#3 silver fan

silver fan
  • Member

  • 3,104 posts
  • Joined: March 00

Posted 24 March 2000 - 11:11

John Cross,
Thanks for the links mate.

Cheers,
SILVER :cool:

#4 karlcars

karlcars
  • Member

  • 600 posts
  • Joined: February 00

Posted 28 March 2000 - 04:04

A book-length biography of Varzi was published in 1991 by Giorgio Nada in Milan -- in Italian natch. It's called 'Una Curva Cieca -- Vita di Achille Varzi.' The title means 'A Blind Corner'....

Alfred Neubauer's autobiography has quite a bit about Varzi, heavily dramatized but based on fact.

#5 Ray Bell

Ray Bell
  • Member

  • 53,395 posts
  • Joined: December 99

Posted 28 March 2000 - 07:14

...except Tripoli, apparently!

------------------
Life and love are mixed with pain...

#6 Don Capps

Don Capps
  • Member

  • 5,933 posts
  • Joined: May 99

Posted 28 March 2000 - 09:10

Don't get me started on Tripoli again!

The good folks at M*t*r Sp*rt didn't even have the decency to respond to my letters about their fantasy concerning the 1933 race. I am of half a mind to submit an article correcting their sorry version of the race.

I am still irritated by their incedible lack of research and that they passed that bullshit off as Gospel! It takes a good bit to get me angry, but they (Mark Hughes in particular and the Editor as well) did it.

------------------
Yr fthfl & hmbl srvnt,

Don Capps

Semper Gumbi: If this was easy, we’d have the solution already…

#7 Dennis David

Dennis David
  • Member

  • 2,432 posts
  • Joined: March 99

Posted 28 March 2000 - 10:05

That and the Top 100 (except the last 10) were low points that should never have been published.

------------------
Regards,

Dennis David
Yahoo = dennis_a_david

Life is racing, the rest is waiting

Grand Prix History
www.ddavid.com/formula1/



#8 Dennis David

Dennis David
  • Member

  • 2,432 posts
  • Joined: March 99

Posted 28 March 2000 - 10:08

Karl, you've got to do Varzi next! There's nothing decent in the English language.

------------------
Regards,

Dennis David
Yahoo = dennis_a_david

Life is racing, the rest is waiting

Grand Prix History
www.ddavid.com/formula1/



#9 f li

f li
  • Member

  • 299 posts
  • Joined: October 99

Posted 28 March 2000 - 10:12

DC,

Just send them the reference to "Your" web pages with "WEAPONS of MASS DESTRUCTION" --- that should get their attention! In truth, they don't want to be bothered by facts because facts rarely sell!



#10 Ray Bell

Ray Bell
  • Member

  • 53,395 posts
  • Joined: December 99

Posted 29 March 2000 - 04:07

Sorry Don... I was just referring to Neubauer's book, but when it comes to Motor Sport the bit I can't understand was why they didn't look up their own race report.
Keir seems to have a relationship with them, can he do something?
I don't think I'll offer them my Timmy Mayer story....

------------------
Life and love are mixed with pain...

#11 Chris Bloom

Chris Bloom
  • Member

  • 558 posts
  • Joined: April 01

Posted 21 October 2001 - 09:53

http://www.autosport...tter=3&series=5

Nigel Roebuck replies to a question about Achille Varzi in his ask Nigel column. Very interesting.

Chris

#12 Jeroen Brink

Jeroen Brink
  • Member

  • 167 posts
  • Joined: March 01

Posted 21 October 2001 - 13:20

Originally posted by Chris Bloom
http://www.autosport...tter=3&series=5

Nigel Roebuck replies to a question about Achille Varzi in his ask Nigel column. Very interesting.

Chris


A thrilling piece. Would it not be nice if Nigel Roebuck turned his back on the present and wrote more on the past of the sport?

#13 paulhooft

paulhooft
  • Member

  • 873 posts
  • Joined: January 01

Posted 01 November 2001 - 18:40

I found the Varzi book when in Maranello Italy,
in a Motorcar bookshop just opposite the Ferrari factory
but my Italian is not that good
so now someone has to translate Una Curva Cieca in english..
Paul Hooft
Netherlands

#14 Yorgos

Yorgos
  • Member

  • 123 posts
  • Joined: October 01

Posted 01 November 2001 - 20:27

Originally posted by paulhooft
I found the Varzi book when in Maranello Italy,
in a Motorcar bookshop just opposite the Ferrari factory
but my Italian is not that good
so now someone has to translate Una Curva Cieca in english..
Paul Hooft
Netherlands


If the subject really interests you, the book is well worth 'polishing' your Italian.
The author tries to re-create the life of Varzi and the narrative is in the first person, sort of a 50's detective story.
Start reading it as soon as you can. I couldnt let it off my hands until I reached the last page.

G Caracatsanis
Rhodes,Greece

#15 Felix Muelas

Felix Muelas
  • Member

  • 1,186 posts
  • Joined: November 99

Posted 01 November 2001 - 21:12

Originally posted by paulhooft
...so now someone has to translate Una Curva Cieca in english..


Sorry, Paul, with all due respects...:lol: :lol: :lol:

The good news is that you can still use pages 33 to 64 (images) and 181 to 202 (results) without a dictionary. That´s about 25% of all the pages the book has.;)

Felix

#16 Don Capps

Don Capps
  • Member

  • 5,933 posts
  • Joined: May 99

Posted 01 November 2001 - 21:54

Paul,

You can translate far more than you realize with an excellent dual language dictionary and some patience. I have done this with a large number of books in my collection over the years.

#17 ry6

ry6
  • Member

  • 521 posts
  • Joined: October 00

Posted 02 November 2001 - 18:08

Sometimes when researching a particular driver ("my target" - please don't shoot me down! for that description!) I read articles, stories, watch old videos etc of drivers that competed against my "target" or do the same research on great races he competed in..

In that way you find out what they thought of the traget driver and you begin to get a bit of a "feel" about him, his cars, his competition and the era he competed in.

By carefully analysing the races he took part in you get an idea of his speed, his race strategies and his record. EG. car breaker, nurser of cars etc.

It's pretty tedious and takes time.

It obviously does not give all the answers but it gives quite a lot of them.

One of the really good sources of info is Automobile Quarterly.

By reading the Nuvolari story you can for instance get plenty of useful insight into Varzi.

Does anyone know if AQ did a big story on Varzi?

Keep well Don. I know you must be quite busy with other demands right now.

Regards
Rob

#18 Roger Clark

Roger Clark
  • Member

  • 5,956 posts
  • Joined: February 00

Posted 02 November 2001 - 23:38

Does anyone know if AQ did a big story on Varzi?



Not in their first 20 years.

#19 Hans Etzrodt

Hans Etzrodt
  • Member

  • 3,171 posts
  • Joined: July 00

Posted 03 November 2001 - 00:28

Not since 1962.

Advertisement

#20 paulhooft

paulhooft
  • Member

  • 873 posts
  • Joined: January 01

Posted 03 November 2001 - 17:06

I have, already read the Photo and Result paages...
The book is already worth its money for the VAMP...! on pages 52 and 53...
Did you see her??
There is an excellent story on Varzi in The book Racing the Silver Arrows by Chris Nixon,
one of the very best racing books I own
I still have to buy his Mon ami mate
Paul Hooft

#21 dretceterini

dretceterini
  • Member

  • 2,991 posts
  • Joined: May 02

Posted 21 August 2002 - 20:03

Don:

Are you saying that a substantial portion of what is published about events that happend 50 years ago is crap? :rolleyes:

Stu

#22 paulhooft

paulhooft
  • Member

  • 873 posts
  • Joined: January 01

Posted 17 September 2002 - 18:24

Is there anymore information on the releasedate of the english version of the Book on Varzi:
Una Curva Chiesa??
Nothing seems to happen on the site of the Publisher..
Paul

#23 Ray Bell

Ray Bell
  • Member

  • 53,395 posts
  • Joined: December 99

Posted 17 September 2002 - 22:06

Originally posted by dretceterini
Don:

Are you saying that a substantial portion of what is published about events that happend 50 years ago is crap? :rolleyes:

Stu


Don't know why Don hasn't noticed this...

There is a very nice article around the place somewhere that makes it plain that Neubauer's account of events at Tripoli were exaggerated to say the least.

Search with the words Neubauer, Nuvolari, Varzi and lottery and you'll probably find more.

#24 VAR1016

VAR1016
  • Member

  • 2,825 posts
  • Joined: June 02

Posted 17 September 2002 - 22:16

I have always found Varzi fascinating and have just discovered this thread.

A pity that the Autosport Roebuck link no longer works!

There was a piece by NR in Motorsport a while back though.

PdeRL

#25 Hans Etzrodt

Hans Etzrodt
  • Member

  • 3,171 posts
  • Joined: July 00

Posted 18 September 2002 - 00:36

Originally posted by VAR1016
.....A pity that the Autosport Roebuck link no longer works!....

e-mail me if you want it . :)

#26 Dennis David

Dennis David
  • Member

  • 2,432 posts
  • Joined: March 99

Posted 18 September 2002 - 03:05

A decent book on Varzi would be the one I most crave. I thought that I was once contacted by a relative of his. maybe I can look it up.

#27 Patrick Italiano

Patrick Italiano
  • Member

  • 412 posts
  • Joined: December 00

Posted 18 September 2002 - 08:37

Originally posted by paulhooft

Una Curva Chiesa??

Paul


About spelling...

Please don't mix "Una curva cieca" which means "A blind corner"
and
"Una curva chiesa" which would be a kind of "A corner church" :confused: ;)

#28 alessandro silva

alessandro silva
  • Member

  • 756 posts
  • Joined: August 00

Posted 18 September 2002 - 08:54

"Una curva cieca" is a very uneven book that will disappoint people who are "craving" for a biography of Varzi in the British/American tradition.

This enigmatic and highly interesting personality deserves a better book. Unfortunately, most of the people interviewed are dead since 1991.

#29 paulhooft

paulhooft
  • Member

  • 873 posts
  • Joined: January 01

Posted 18 September 2002 - 15:50

Sorry:
I am dutch, and not italian,
even if I like opera.... :
lol:
Paul

#30 paulhooft

paulhooft
  • Member

  • 873 posts
  • Joined: January 01

Posted 22 September 2002 - 16:22

May be Una Curva..
Is not the definitive Varzi book:
but at least: it is a book about him:
and I really like to read it, and make my own opinion about the book
so I am eagely waiting for it...
But can any one tell more about the release date of the English version?
Greetings
Paul

Yes:
I have most of the books on Tazio Nuvolari,
And have been at his MUSEO
It is in the middle of Mantova!!
I think that is the right place for the great man!!

#31 jmp85

jmp85
  • Member

  • 59 posts
  • Joined: October 01

Posted 23 September 2002 - 02:45

there was an article in "vintage motorsport", may/june 2001. i don't know if one can order back issues...

#32 paulhooft

paulhooft
  • Member

  • 873 posts
  • Joined: January 01

Posted 08 January 2003 - 20:52

O.k.
This is only to get Achille Varzi on top Again...
Why?
I am in direct contact with the Publisher that tries to publish
the english translation of Una Curva Cieca
May be it is not the Definitive Varzi book,
But will that ever be published??
In the meantime I really like to have the translation of this Italian book dearly!
anyone agrees?
Paul Hooft

#33 m.tanney

m.tanney
  • Member

  • 341 posts
  • Joined: January 03

Posted 15 January 2003 - 22:53

Paul,
I, too, have been eagerly awaiting the publication of the English translation of Una Curva Cieca. I first saw it listed on the Meadow Geese Press website in 1999. It was due to be published in the latter part of that year. Of course, it wasn't. I wrote to the publisher, and they said it would be early in 2000...then late 2000, early 2001, late 2001, and so on.
Last fall, I sent my annual email to Meadow Geese to ask when it would be available. The reply was, "not for some time", and that "late next year would be perfect". Given the publisher's track record, I wouldn't count on it. Meadow Geese has only published two books so far: a children's book in 2001 and a poetry book last year. It already has another book listed for release next year, so at its current book-a-year pace, 2004 might be a more likely date for Una Curva Cieca, if it appears at all.
I suppose that there's a lesson in this for any author who'd like to have his or her book published in another language: be sure to pick a publisher with the means to do it and the track record to prove it.
The shame of it all is that, while Una Curva Cieca may not be the definitive biography of Achille Varzi, rumours of its "forthcoming" publication in English may be keeping some other prospective biographer(s) from attempting such a book. This is especially unfortunate as Varzi's story is one that might appeal to a broader audience which, I assume, is what publishers want. What we really need is a book that combines the reported psychological insight of Una Curva Cieca with a fuller account of Varzi's racing career (on two wheels and four), along with a few hundred photos and a full results section. This may be unfair, but I suspect that, if someone started on such a book in 2003, it would still find its way into print before the Meadow Geese translation of Una Curva Cieca.

Mike

#34 paulhooft

paulhooft
  • Member

  • 873 posts
  • Joined: January 01

Posted 16 January 2003 - 20:19

dear mike,
Thanks for your very honest reaction!!
I can only hope that it will be a little earlier...
than you are expecting..
otherwise,
It sure will be a very long wait..
if ever..
and that would be a pity
Kindest regards
Paul

#35 aldo

aldo
  • Member

  • 135 posts
  • Joined: January 03

Posted 02 February 2003 - 22:30

Jumping out the Rosemeyer Thread to this one, I'm sorry not to be able to provide more than other documents in Italian on Varzi.
I fully agree that Una curva cieca is a good book, well written and well researched.
In 1995, I organized an exhibit on Varzi in his hometown Galliate, near Milano. We assembled many hundreds photos, found some of his silverware, including Targa Florio, got his trousers, jacket, boots, gloves when racing bikes, his racing goggles and some other memorabilia which I don't remember. We had sone of his bikes and had alfa romeo bringing there a P2, an 8C 2300 Monza, a 158.
One of the mechanichs working for him under Amedeo Bignami is still alive, fit and strong, and he supplied additional unpublished photos and stories. Varzi's personal medical doctor was still there (he was Fangio doctor, too).
We staged a roundtable with my friends Giorgio Terruzzi (the author of Una curva Cieca), Cesare De Agostini (the co-author of the Auto Union book), the former racing driver Gino Munaron, Varzi's mechanic, the Italian historian Franco Zagari. We got a moving written testimony by Gigi Villoresi, unfortunately already too ill to be there. Some of the speeches were edited by myself and have been published in the Italian motor monthly Auto d'Epoca. I should have the Word file somewhere.
I also organized a seminar on him for our Italian automotive Historian Association Aisa, but, unfortunately, it's not yet in our Website www.aisastoryauto.it. I plan to upload it later, but, once again, it will be in Italian.
I should have somewhere a few copies of the catalogue of the exhibit: maybe, I can send out one or two to the first ones asking for it.
You all surely know that the last Varzi car, the Alfa Romeo 12C 1937 rebuilt for 1948 Temporada, has been fully restored and it's going around the top historic car racing events in Europe and US.
I wrote a story on it in one of the latest issues of the Italian magazine Ruoteclassiche.

#36 dmj

dmj
  • Member

  • 1,956 posts
  • Joined: August 01

Posted 02 February 2003 - 22:47

Munaron was Varzi's mechanic? Now, you really can learn something new each day here in TNF...

#37 paulhooft

paulhooft
  • Member

  • 873 posts
  • Joined: January 01

Posted 03 February 2003 - 16:01

Aldo:
Thanks for all this information,
I will visit the site soon
If you have in fact any information, please email it to me.
I planned to go to Gailliate when at Lake Como, last summer,
but as I got a lot of pain and trouble with my back then, I never made it
Was there a brochure of the Varzi expo?
Paul

#38 aldo

aldo
  • Member

  • 135 posts
  • Joined: January 03

Posted 04 February 2003 - 08:42

The name of the surviving Varzi mechanic is Ermanno Brustio. Gino Munaron is a retired racing driver, competing in sports and F1 races from the Fifties to the Sixties. He is much younger than Varzi, but his family was close to him and he knew him well.

#39 dmj

dmj
  • Member

  • 1,956 posts
  • Joined: August 01

Posted 04 February 2003 - 13:42

Originally posted by aldo
The name of the surviving Varzi mechanic is Ermanno Brustio. Gino Munaron is a retired racing driver, competing in sports and F1 races from the Fifties to the Sixties. He is much younger than Varzi, but his family was close to him and he knew him well.

Thanks for clearing it - I was surprised when I read it in first place!

Advertisement

#40 paulhooft

paulhooft
  • Member

  • 873 posts
  • Joined: January 01

Posted 18 August 2003 - 14:52

I just recieved a message from Meadow Greese Press:
about the English version of Una Curva Cieca
As they waited so long to publish the book
The rights have reverted to Giorgio Nada Editore in
Milan, Italy.
Paul

#41 Ralliart

Ralliart
  • Member

  • 669 posts
  • Joined: June 02

Posted 19 August 2003 - 09:08

My feeling has always been that Varzi was faster than Nuvolari up until Tripoli... Don't know if the record will bear that out, but that's my impression.

#42 bkalb

bkalb
  • Member

  • 139 posts
  • Joined: June 01

Posted 19 August 2003 - 09:59

Nobody has mentioned the Varzi chapter in Chris Nixon's "Racing the Silver Arrows," which among other things talks about his affair with Ilse Pietsch and how she introduced him to narcotics, which pretty much ruined his career. There are other references to Varzi throughout the book.

Barry Kalb

#43 Ray Bell

Ray Bell
  • Member

  • 53,395 posts
  • Joined: December 99

Posted 19 August 2003 - 11:29

That episode in his life is also the subject of some Neubauer attention... but I guess it's not necessarily as factual as would be in Nixon's book...

For one thing, names aren't mentioned.

#44 Barry Boor

Barry Boor
  • Member

  • 10,768 posts
  • Joined: October 00

Posted 13 April 2009 - 07:25

Concerning Varzi....

I have just finished reading a novel about the air war over Malta 1941-42. (Bear with me on this one)

One of the main characters, a British pilot, remembers his days in Italy before the war, especially watching Varzi win a powerboat race on Lake Garda or Como - can't remember which.

As I said, this IS a novel, but I am assuming that the Varzi info is accurate. Can anyone confirm?

#45 taylov

taylov
  • Member

  • 600 posts
  • Joined: February 05

Posted 13 April 2009 - 08:47

Originally posted by Barry Boor
Concerning Varzi....

I have just finished reading a novel about the air war over Malta 1941-42. (Bear with me on this one)

One of the main characters, a British pilot, remembers his days in Italy before the war, especially watching Varzi win a powerboat race on Lake Garda or Como - can't remember which.

As I said, this IS a novel, but I am assuming that the Varzi info is accurate. Can anyone confirm?


Barry,

I can't confirm this particular tale, but Varzi was certainly seen in a powerboat on Lake Garda after the war .

According to Gerald Guetat's book "Classic powerboats: 1945 -1962", the great man was there to present a prize to Achille Castoldi for one of his victories. He was invited to take the wheel of Castoldi's boat, "Arno II". Guetat dates this occasion as 1948.

I'll dig through the powerboat books to see if there's any info on a pre-war appearance.

Tony

#46 speedman13

speedman13
  • Member

  • 228 posts
  • Joined: June 08

Posted 23 November 2009 - 09:13

Does anyone know the exact lcation of Varzi's fatal accident at Bern.

#47 Tim Murray

Tim Murray
  • Member

  • 13,836 posts
  • Joined: May 02

Posted 23 November 2009 - 11:09

The least vague description I've seen is 'near the Jordenrampe curve'. This appears in Georgano, in Dennis David's profile of Varzi (link in post 2 of this thread) and in Vitesse 2's earlier post:

Varzi was killed near the Jordenrampe curve when his Alfa 158 skidded in the wet and overturned.:(


Edit: I've just found the following in Nigel Roebuck's Grand Prix Greats:

As Louis Chiron followed, the Alfa went into a slide through the fast Jordenrampe S-bend, then clipped a wooden barrier and somersaulted, throwing Varzi out on to the road.


Edited by Tim Murray, 23 November 2009 - 11:22.


#48 sherer

sherer
  • Member

  • 145 posts
  • Joined: June 09

Posted 23 November 2009 - 12:18

seen a few people in this thread mention the Neuburer bio is this available from Amazon or anywhere else ?

Would love to get a few books about the pre-war period and learn a bit more about the greats

#49 Vitesse2

Vitesse2
  • Nostalgia Forum Moderator

  • 23,381 posts
  • Joined: April 01

Posted 23 November 2009 - 18:38

Tim's quote from Roebuck looks to be a paraphrased translation of the description in Cimarosti's Grand Prix Suisse, which records it as being "dans le long S de Jorden".

#50 Tim Murray

Tim Murray
  • Member

  • 13,836 posts
  • Joined: May 02

Posted 23 November 2009 - 21:52

I doubt it, Richard. The Roebuck book was published in 1986, six years before the Cimarosti book. Perhaps they both relied on the same earlier source.