Today a restored plaque dedicated to Alberto Ascari was unveiled at Parco del Valentino in Turin. The Heritage department was in attendance with a magnificent Lancia D50, the same model in which the great racing driver won the 1955 Valentino Grand Prix.
The ARTES-APS Association, which is committed to saving and promoting the historical and artistic heritage of the city of Turin, has unveiled a restored commemorative plaque dedicated to the victory of Alberto Ascari, one of the greatest racing drivers of all time, at Parco del Valentino.
Guest of honour at the event was a Lancia D50 Formula One racing car, one of the most valuable pieces in the Heritage department’s collection.
Its presence has symbolic significance: in March 1955, Alberto Ascari drove a Lancia D50 to victory in the seventh and last Valentino Grand Prix.
Only eight of the cars were made and the design, by Vittorio Jano, was truly innovative for its time. The eight-cylinder V-engine was positioned transversely to allow the drive shaft to pass alongside rather than under the seat, thereby enabling the car's centre of gravity to be lowered for superior stability. The rear gearbox was also mounted transversely, while the distinctive side fuel tanks were intended to improve the car's aerodynamics.
Ascari won the competition in Turin by completing the 90-lap race in two hours and 40 minutes, at an impressive average speed of 140 km/h. In memory of his feat, a marble plaque inscribed with the year of his victory, the name of the Milan-born champion and his race number “6” was embedded in the asphalt at the exact position where Ascari’s D50 once waited on the starting grid.
As part of its mission to save and promote the historical heritage of the Abarth, Alfa Romeo, Fiat and Lancia automotive brands, the Heritage department has always worked in close contact with international, national and local organisations and associations. According to Roberto Giolito, Head of Heritage: "Taking part in these events is a matter of honour for us, because we want to spread awareness about the historical heritage of our illustrious automotive brands in the broadest possible way. Supporting the activities of institutions and associations that coincide with our own objectives and making the historic cars in our collection available for cultural events with great symbolic significance contributes to raising the profile of the project that we are steadfastly pursuing."