June 08th 2016

Racing In Style With A Mille Miglia Gentleman Driver


Infused with all the distinctive charm of La Dolce Vita, the Mille Miglia has been offering a unique racing experience since 1927. After a twenty-year interruption, the mythical race made its grand comeback in 1977. Reserved to privileged Happy Fews driven by a strong passion for historical cars, the competition is the ultimate rendezvous of the world’s most elegant gentleman. From May 19 to 22, Italy was the theatre of a pure style demonstration.

Impeccable suits and beautifully crafted watches will rival with the refined aura of classical cars from 1927 to 1957, only the models that took part in the original race. Since 1988, “La Corsa la più bella del mondo” has chosen Chopard as its official timekeeper. An honor that we celebrate each year with limited edition watches that are a real tribute to the beautiful cars in competition.


From Brescia to Rome and back, a Mille Miglia gentleman driver is entirely devoted to his passion for historical cars and the mythical race that he prepares months ahead. A competitor’s car requires tender care all year long, and when it comes from the other side of the globe, its transport can be a journey as stressful and challenging as the race itself. Yet, there is true love between a racer and its car, like a gentleman who offers protection and delicate manners to a lady.

The passion can also be felt in the very specific relation a driver encounters with the Italian public. Always warm and deeply attached to the race, spectators can wait during hours for the cars to pass on their road. Drivers always welcome their enthusiasm with pride and emotion, as David Gandy declared to Vogue in 2013 “The support from the Italian people was truly astounding. The Italians have always taken me into their heart (…), but this was something else and the commitment of the crowds who came out to cheer us all on, even in the most torrential conditions, was overwhelming.”


A true gentleman driver simply exudes pure confidence through his refined style. When running the Mille Miglia, offering to the public a most elegant allure seems equally as important as driving a unique historical car. After all, the race takes place in Italy, the land of sophisticated tailoring. It thus starts with a costume: not too slim, as driving requires comfort, but still impeccable in its structure and excellently executed. Everything lies in the details: from the colored silk lining to vintage inspired cufflinks, a crisp shirt never wrinkled even after a day under the rain and wind, and the perfect pair of leather driving gloves. Of course, a gentleman driver’s watch is a most central element of the outfit. It should be precise, an infallible ally to measure the precious time of the endurance race, but also a statement of elegance. This year again, Chopard is proud to release a Limited Edition Mille Miglia watch with a chestnut colored leather strap and a black dial adorned with numbers in a pure vintage style.


As an endurance race going through Italy’s most magical scenery, the Mille Miglia is a beautiful ode of the Dolce Vita. A gentleman driver takes the time to admire what surrounds him and to capture the mood of the race, whether it is the electric atmosphere of the departure at dawn, the delightful pleasure of a typical Italian dinner, or the picturesque decor of the villages and landscapes he passes through. No need of a high-tech phone to enjoy the dreamlike atmosphere of the race, on the contrary, it would even spoil the moment. A gentleman knows how to disconnect from the craziness of daily life, and competing in the Mille Miglia is the perfect occasion for that.