20 June 2018
Brescia (Italy), May 20th 2018
Since 1988, Chopard has been the historic partner and official timekeeper of the Mille Miglia, the legendary classic car event. From May 16th to 19th 2018, Chopard celebrated it’s 30th partnership with the Mille Miglia. The race saw 440 teams competing over a distance of one thousand miles (around 1,600km) on a historic route that runs from Brescia to Rome and back via Tuscany.
This competitive event is only open to cars of the type that took part in the great race between the years 1927 and 1957. Loyal to this tradition that began 30 years ago in 1988, Karl-Friedrich Scheufele, Chopard co-president and a passionate driver, participated alongside his long-lasting friend and racing legend Jacky Ickx. Several friends of the brands attended the race: Famous American actor Adrian Brody partnered the Porsche driver Timo Bernhard. Albert Carreras son of the famous tenor José Carreras, went to the starting line with his friend Jordi Pascual. In total, Chopard took no fewer than five cars to the starting line. The Maison presented during this race different Mille Miglia watch models: the Mille Miglia 2018 Race Edition, the Mille Miglia Racing Colours and the Mille Miglia GTS Power Control Grigio Speciale.
The 36th edition of "la corsa la più bella del mondo” started under a sunny sky. The 440 crews took off from Viale Venezia in Brescia on Wednesday, May 16th at 2.30 pm. The next three days, they passed through more than 30 cities and towns among San Marino, Roma, Siena, Parma, Milano and Bergamo before heading back to the starting point, the historical ramp, in the heart of Brescia. Enthusiastic locals and guests bid the drivers farewell during the first kilometres of the race, thousands of spectators lined the streets of the route and shouted out encouragement to the drivers. Mr Scheufele said: “It’s amazing how passionate are the Mille Miglia followers. They are here for the cars and performances every year. It’s so unique.” Mille Miglia is always a must for car enthusiasts from all over the world welcoming each year new nationalities. Drivers from 40 different nationalities from the 5 continents campaigned for victory this year.
This year again, Karl-Friedrich Scheufele chose to honour Chopard’s partnership with Porsche Motorsport. The legendary driver and friend of the House Jacky Ickx drove with Karl Friedrich Scheufele the Porsche 550A Spyder RS, a loan from the Porsche Museum. The car specially created in 1956 and destined to make its mark on the history of motorsports. “Porsche car and especially the 550 Spyder RS is a very reliable car as well as very fun to drive. I really enjoy driving it ! Especially with my friend Jacky Ickx. We did our first Mille Miglia race together in 1989.”
Adrian Brody, friend of the Maison Chopard, partnered the famous Porsche pilot, Timo Bernhard, to start the race in position 301 on the ramp of Viale Venezia in a Porsche 356 car from 1955. Albert Carreras, son of the famous tenor José Carreras drove the race with his co-pilot Jordi Pascual in a Mercedes Benz 300 SL, owned by the Scheufele family.
From Hong Kong, Mr David Hu, friend of Chopard, decided to take part in this adventure under the Chopard flag with great expectation to live once again a fantastic racing moment. From Brazil, Mr Pomelli and his son, friends of the Maison as well, chose to rediscover their fantastic country and experience the Mille Miglia as drivers.
The high-decibel roar of well-tuned engines, the pungent smell of hot tarmac, dizzying speeds and bursts of adrenalin… all combine to make a striking contrast to watchmaking, with its atmospherically controlled rooms where monastic silence reigns supreme. Closer inspection, however, reveals a number of common factors between these two worlds, including the relationship with time, the passion for fine mechanical engineering, and the need for absolute concentration. The close ties between Chopard and the Mille Miglia stem from a now-inseparable shared history started 30 years ago in 1988. The initial connection was born from a personal passion for classic cars nurtured by Karl-Friedrich Scheufele. Under his leadership, Chopard became the main sponsor of the Mille Miglia in 1988 and one of the first brands to associate its name with the automobile world. For Karl-Friedrich Scheufele, the links are entirely natural: “Lovers of fine cars often have a great weakness for precious timepieces and vice versa. Extreme precision and sporting elegance are important in both these fields.”
The very special edition of the Mille Miglia was a great occasion for Chopard to launch different Mille Miglia watch models: the Mille Miglia 2018 Race Edition, the Mille Miglia Racing Colours and the Mille Miglia GTS Power Control Grigio Speciale.