This incredible piece of machinery pictured here is Nuvolari's 1935 Alfa Romeo Tipo C 8C-35. It competed fiercely with the legendary Silver Arrows of Auto Union and Mercedes. Just two short weeks ago I took this picture above at Lime Rock Park, the car sitting humbly under a canopy during a torrential downpour. Not a soul in sight.
Today I learned that after Lime Rock, the car was shipped off for competition at Goodwood Revival, and was then sold at the subsequent Bonhams auction for the US equivalent of $9.4 MILLION.
I suppose I shouldn't be so shocked... when I saw it the first time, I knew it was worth millions. After all it is the only one in the world. But sitting there in the rain, it looked so lonely. Not a crowd around it, or a gaggle of photographers. Not a soul.
Looking back, it's rather funny... even amazing. If Tiffany's had a $10,000,000 diamond on display, you can bet it would be encased in a cube of impenetrable glass, wired with sensors, and with armed guards standing at the ready, prepared not just for a hungry thief but something as dramatic as a Danny Ocean heist.
But thievery isn't the point of this. Vintage racing is. I saw this car move, attack corners, and roar on the straights with other cars side by side. It wasn’t treated as a priceless gem, or protected like a magnificent piece of art. Yet in my eyes it is worthy of admiration equal or greater to our society's popular benchmarks of beauty.
I am proud to have seen such a legendary car. May it continue to be driven in vintage events around the world, inspiring those who appreciate it for years to come. I hope this piece of moving art continues to be valued for all of its historic AND modern value by its next owner.