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Luigi Chinetti's pre-war race record


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#1 cabianca

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Posted 16 September 2009 - 21:00

In researching Luigi Chinetti, Sr.'s race record, the first result I can find is Le Mans 1932, which he won. I find it hard to believe someone would win a race of this magnitude on their first outing. Can anyone assist with results or sources for racing Chinetti may have done prior to the 1932 Le Mans event.

On another Chinetti subject, it has been published that after he went to live in France, Alfa tried to get him to return (perhaps at the behest of the government which owned Alfa) and that the Italian gov't itself requested that he return to do his national service. The fact that he did not comply with either of these requests would seem to me to indicate that he would have aroused some resentment from Italian authorities. Despite this, he took part in what passed for the 1940 Mille Miglia, driving a Delage with Taruffi. Can anyone shed any light on this matter.

Many thanks.

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#2 Marc Ceulemans

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Posted 17 September 2009 - 16:54

He took part in the 24 Hours at Spa in 1928, pairing with Rachewsky (Alfa Romeo 6C-1500).

#3 JB Miltonian

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Posted 17 September 2009 - 18:25

According to a biographical article in "Sports Car International", October 1991:

"Chinetti recalls that his debut as an Alfa racing driver was most likely at Dieppe in 1929, driving one of Jano's 6C1750 sport models."

"As the Parisian Alfa dealer, Chinetti could indulge in racing as a business expense. He showed real talent, and quickly specialized in long-distance events. At the French Montlhery track in late 1931, with two other drivers, he set a new long-distance record by driving 5,000 miles in 33 hours and 28 seconds at an average speed of 93.8 mph." I don't know whether this was a race or a speed trial.

The story of Chinetti's "escape" from the Fascist Italian government is told at some length in this article.

#4 Marc Ceulemans

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Posted 17 September 2009 - 22:55

According to a biographical article in "Sports Car International", October 1991:

"Chinetti recalls that his debut as an Alfa racing driver was most likely at Dieppe in 1929, driving one of Jano's 6C1750 sport models."

"As the Parisian Alfa dealer, Chinetti could indulge in racing as a business expense. He showed real talent, and quickly specialized in long-distance events. At the French Montlhery track in late 1931, with two other drivers, he set a new long-distance record by driving 5,000 miles in 33 hours and 28 seconds at an average speed of 93.8 mph." I don't know whether this was a race or a speed trial.

The story of Chinetti's "escape" from the Fascist Italian government is told at some length in this article.


The 2 other drivers were Zehender and Pesato.

#5 D-Type

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Posted 20 September 2009 - 22:51

According to his obituary in Historic Racing for November 1994 his race record was

Year Event Co-Driver Car Position
1932 24hr Du Mans Sommer Alfa Romeo 1
1933 24hr de Spa-Franconchamps Chiron Alfa Romeo 1
1933 24hr Du Mans Varnet Alfa Romeo 2
1934 24hr Du Mans Etancelin Alfa Romeo 1
1935 24hr Du Mans Gastaud Alfa Romeo DNF

1948 12hr de Paris - Ferrari 1
1949 12hr de Spa-Franconchamps Lucas Ferrari 1
1949 24hr Du Mans Lord Selsdon Ferrari 1
1950 12hr de Paris Lucas Ferrari 1
1950 24hr Du Mans Dreyfus Ferrari DNF
1951 24hr Du Mans Lucas Ferrari 8
1951 Carrera Panamericana Taruffi Ferrari 1
1952 24hr Du Mans Lucas Ferrari DNF
1952 Carrera Panamericana Lucas Ferrari 3
1953 24hr Du Mans Cole Ferrari DNF
1953 Carrera Panamericana De Portago Ferrari DNF

Sorry - I don't know how to format the columbs neatly

Edited by D-Type, 20 September 2009 - 22:51.