It is a foggy morning at Brooklands in November 1938. Franco Cortese, a well-known Italian racing driver, has brought an interesting new Alfa Romeo to England and has asked Louis Klemantaski to look it over. The Alfa is a 6c2500 competition spider. They would both drive the Alfa that morning and Klemantaski would take a number of photographs of this interesting car during their private test session.
Franco Cortese had a 30-year competition history beginning in the late 1920s. He held the record for finishing the Mille Miglia, his career just covering the history of that famous open road race. He was also the first driver to race a Ferrari, at Piacenza in May 1947, and the first to win a race in a Ferrari, at Rome two weeks later. Most of his subsequent races were with Ferrari sports cars.
Some years ago, the late British racing entrant John Coombs discovered this same Alfa Romeo in terrible condition in a garage in Egypt. Coombs, who then resided in Monte Carlo, brought the Alfa back to Europe and had it restored to its original lovely condition.
Photo by Dennis May (using Louis Klemantaski’s camera) ©The Klemantaski Collection
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