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Arzani-Volpini-Speluzzi


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#1 Leo

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Posted 03 February 2000 - 23:06

Included on the entry list for the 1955 Italian Grand Prix, is an entry by Scuderia Volpini. They entered a car called Arzani-Volpini, equipped with a Speluzzi engine. Their driver was Italian Luigi Piotti, who did not start the race.
Intrigued by this very unfamiliar car, I went looking for info. But, as you guess, I could find very little. All I know is that:
-Arzani and Volpini are the last names of the designers/owners
-The car was never entered for any other W.C. Grand Prix
-Luigi Piotti went on to get his own Maserati 250F, that he entered privately the years after

So is there anybody out there who can tell me more about this mysterious car?

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#2 Ray Bell

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Posted 04 February 2000 - 04:58

Before the war there were Anzani engines. There's one in Aust fitted to a Bugatti, and it has been since that era.
Is it perhaps Anzani?
Does sound like an optimistic entry, doesn't it, and it does underline how different racing was then compared to now!

#3 Leo

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Posted 04 February 2000 - 08:51

Well, you may be right, but I'm quite sure it's Arzani. It's spelled like that in Cimarosti's book.


#4 Stephen Herbert

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Posted 04 February 2000 - 11:40

The Arzani-Volpini was based on the Maserati that was modified by Scuderia Milano in 1950.
It was designed by Egidio Arzani and Gianpaolo Volpini, and although entered for the Italian GP in 1955 it did not set a time during practice. I think the car also competed at the Pau GP in that year.
Mario Speluzzi was involved in the Scuderia Milano project modifying their Maserati engines. I do not know if he was involved in enlarging the 1.5-litre supercharged engine to a 2.5-litre non-supercharged version for Arzani-Volpini.
Volpini was also the name of some Formula Junior cars in the late 1950's, but I'm not sure if these were built by the same man that was involved in the Arzani-Volpini.

#5 Ray Bell

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Posted 04 February 2000 - 15:40

Where do you get this stuff?

Jenkinson's comments on the car would be interesting, anyone got the October 1955 Motor Sport?

#6 Racer.Demon

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Posted 04 February 2000 - 18:01

Most probably from David Hodges' quintessential Formula Cars A-Z!

Felix, are you out there? You should be able to complete the picture for us...

Cheers,
M.


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#7 Dennis David

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Posted 04 February 2000 - 23:44

Mike Lawrence's Grand Prix Cars 1945-65 also contains this information.

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

Dennis David
Yahoo = dennis_a_david

Life is racing, the rest is waiting

Grand Prix History
www.ddavid.com/formula1/



[This message has been edited by Dennis David (edited 02-04-2000).]

#8 Stephen Herbert

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Posted 04 February 2000 - 23:53

Yes, the information came from David Hodges' excellent A-Z of Formula Racing Cars

#9 Felix Muelas

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Posted 05 February 2000 - 21:17

Very interesting subject, as it is the case with many of the postings that can be found in this forum.
We should probably thank more often the guys behind the curtains of this invention, if only for the opportunities given to all of us to have a whale of a time quite frequently. Here goes mine. J

Racer.Demon was probably tempting me to re-write an article that, some years ago, I somehow managed to draft putting together the result of some investigation on several sources.
Unfortunately, I have no idea whatsoever of where the article (and the supporting notes) could have gone, so I will just write some tips, for further development by any of you.
This entire story apparently starts in 1949, when the organizers of the Italian Grand Prix decided to offer some serious starting money to any constructor presenting cars of new design for the race. The Ruggieri brothers, that were the owners of the Scuderia Milano, made a couple of modifications to two Maseratis 4CLT/48 that they owned at the time (1594 and 1602) and they entered them as Maserati-Milanos.
The basic modifications were shorter wheelbases, larger brakes and a re-tuned engine (via an increased blower pressure) of which Mario Speluzzi was responsible. Taruffi and Farina drove the cars, but the organizers understood that these cars were nothing but a redesign, and the "special prize" was not awarded to them.
The idea, however, was kept alive, and the Ruggieris decided to make a further step in 1950. Two chassis 4CLT/50 were bought (1611 and 1612) and some experiments took place on them. To cut the long story short, one of the cars, the 1611 probably, became the Milano 1 (with a de-Dion axle) whilst the second one was never raced during the season, and its rear did not adopt the de Dion. At the same time, Speluzzi conveniently modified the Maserati engine with a large single Roots blower in place on the two-stage original one and a completely new cylinder head with two plugs per cylinder.
My compatriots Paco Godia and Juan Jover drove for the team in the 1950 Penya Rhin race, but sources seem to indicate that the second car was not the Milano “2” but one of the 1949 cars.
With money running short for continuing with the ideas, that was the end of the Milanos. Was it ?

Well, not exactly. Somehow sources agree that car number “2” (probably original 1612) happened to be sold to a young amateur driver named Mario Alborghetti, which enthusiasm was such that he commissioned Gianpaolo Volpini and Egidio Arzani to “create” a car of their own for him to drive at “top” level, based on the chassis that he had bought.
The car, now named “Arzani-Volpini”, which external aspect was very much of “Squalo” lines, was supposed to be ready by March 1955, so an entry was made for it at the Turin Grand Prix at Valentino Park. Just a bit too soon, as the car was not ready in time.
A fortnight later, in April, the combination appeared in Pau for the Grand Prix. Against odds, Alborghetti was incredibly slow in practice, and was well at the back of the grid in similar times with Storez and Armagnac with their DB’s supercharged “monomilles”, around ten seconds slower than the next guy up there. We know he drove a very slow race, made three pit-stops and then, on lap 19, he crashed heavily into the straw bales at the tight Station corner, apparently without making any attempt to round it. Alborghetti was killed and nine spectators were injured.
Whilst some authors have never found a reasonable explanation for this accident others suggest that Pollet was involved in it, as he would have been overtaking Mario on the inside at that particular moment.
How the car went into Piotti’s hands for Monza later in the year and was practised but not raced is part of the mistery, but unfortunately I have never heard or read a reasonable explanation.
And this means, by the way, that the picture of Alborghetti driving the Arzani number 28 at Pau in 1955 will not be a 8W decider anymore, I’m afraid…
;-)
Un abrazo
Felix
The 8W Team


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#10 Leo

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Posted 08 February 2000 - 00:50

Thanx guys!
Another mistery solved, and turned out to be a nice story too.

I'm sorry if my question robbed you from an 8W-question, Felix. :)

#11 vintageautomobilia

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Posted 11 January 2007 - 21:02

Does anyone know a connection with the name "Votorini" to Volpini? And/or of a late 1940's - early 1950's Volpini 1100 two-seater sports with cycle (or clam shell) fenders vintage racing in the UK?

#12 dretceterini

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Posted 12 January 2007 - 01:44

Originally posted by vintageautomobilia
Does anyone know a connection with the name "Votorini" to Volpini? And/or of a late 1940's - early 1950's Volpini 1100 two-seater sports with cycle (or clam shell) fenders vintage racing in the UK?


Peter:

I have never come across the name Voltorini other than the fact of your mentioning it for years.

#13 alessandro silva

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Posted 01 February 2007 - 19:52

Votorini was no Italian. It was a mid-fifties cycle-winged Californian special with Fiat 1100 engine built by some Bob Allinger - if my notes are correct.
Later, it was turned into a Formula Junior by simply removing wings, lights and spare wheel (there was one on the tail, if I remember well).
My notes say that I have a photo, but I could not find it presently.

#14 dretceterini

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Posted 01 February 2007 - 22:07

Originally posted by alessandro silva
Votorini was no Italian. It was a mid-fifties cycle-winged Californian special with Fiat 1100 engine built by some Bob Allinger - if my notes are correct.
Later, it was turned into a Formula Junior by simply removing wings, lights and spare wheel (there was one on the tail, if I remember well).
My notes say that I have a photo, but I could not find it presently.



A period photo would help, as no one seems to remember the car other than Peter. I can't find it in any entry list I have...

#15 vintageautomobilia

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Posted 19 February 2007 - 00:36

I not only remember it, I owned it for a while. It had a tubular chassis supposedly designed and built by Volpini. The motor was derived from a Fiat 1100 and had a brass plate with "Volpini" on it and a motor number much shorter than a Fiat number. It was very pretty but I ended up selling it to two fellows from England (if I remember correctly). I believe they were able to come up with more definitive history, but I can't remember what it was. I've always been interested in its history and what happened to it.

#16 dretceterini

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Posted 19 February 2007 - 03:22

I vaguely remember you having it YEARS ago. Do you have any photos you can post?

#17 alessandro silva

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Posted 19 February 2007 - 16:59

If you use the search engine in this forum for Vottorini (two t's), you'll find this and more:

"There were some pretty interesting "jokes" perpetrated in the meantime. One car that comes to mind was built by Bob Allinger (south of San Francisco) initially as an MG sports car (It would have raced "F-Modified") was fitted with a Fiat 1100 engine (possibly before completion) and was raced G-Modified without any real noteworthy result. When Formula Junior came around, a fellow named Elmer Votto got the car, removed the fenders and decided to call it a "Vottorini" (sometimes listed as "Votorini") and then turned it into a "Volpini" (by name) and even stamped "Volpini-Torino" into the engine before selling it on to a guy named Rattner who continued to race it as "Volpini". Of course, Volpini never had anything to do with it, but the desire of someone to believe was so strong that, when the car was sold to England perhaps twenty years ago, the word is that a former Volpini employee saw the car and proclaimed it to be a "Volpini"!

Of course Volpini was a Milan-based outfit

#18 dretceterini

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Posted 19 February 2007 - 17:06

and this all (indirectly) connects back to my search for information on the Alfa 412s, as one of the last time one of the cars was seen was when it was at Volpini's shop in Milan, circa 1959.

I'm still not sure exactly what roles Roselli, Volpini and Tinarelli had; ie: who actually built the cars using these names...