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22 June1947
The Mille Miglia
Ermenegildo Boccafogli
Funny Jazz reworked by Michele Manzolini

One of the signs of the post-war revival is the resumption of the Mille Miglia, the legendary car race that runs up and down Italy, between Brescia and Rome, and that marked the memories and imagination of more than one generation. After a seven-year interruption, the Mille Miglia starts again, taking place between 21 and 22 June and passing through many cities including Ferrara. On the streets of the city, where DC signs and election posters can be glimpsed, film lover and motoring enthusiast Ermenegildo Boccafogli shoots with his 16mm camera. A parade of cars, with portraits of probably local drivers who would like to emulate Tazio Nuvolari. Even in the post-war period, will the Mille Miglia be a dream for many? It would last for another ten years or so, scattering deaths on the sides of roads that were still bad until it was suspended precisely because of serious accidents. Who would have imagined such an inglorious end? "Mille Miglia; something undefined, something out of the natural, reminiscent of the old fairy tales we listened to avidly as children, stories of fairies, of wizards with boots, of boundless horizons. Mille Miglia: an evocative phrase that today indicates the progress of means and the audacity of men. Crazy, exhausting, non-stop racing through countryside and cities, over mountains and by the sea, day and night. Road ribbons winding under the roaring machines, eyes that do not close in sleep, faces that do not tremble, drivers with nerves of steel'. So in 'La Stampa' in 1927 for the first edition. But Nuvolari, too, grew old and the heroic world of racing through urban centres and the Italian landscape soon disappeared. In the 1947 edition, the driver who would be immortalised by Lucio Dalla's song nevertheless came second, after a race that was 1827 kilometres long.