Some 60 years after Mercedes-Benz’s triumph at the Mille Miglia, three of the greatest heroes of the thousand-mile race in 1955 are returning to the route between Brescia and Rome: together with the legendary Mercedes-Benz 300 SLR (W 196 S) racing car, Mercedes-Benz racing drivers Stirling Moss and Hans Herrmann are remembering the 1955 race at this year’s Mille Miglia event, which is being held between 14 and 17 May 2015.
Back then the young Brit Moss won this furious Italian road race with his co-driver Denis Jenkinson in the fastest ever time of 10 hours, 7 minutes and 48 seconds over a distance of around 1,600 kilometres. Hans Herrmann, on the other hand, was the hapless hero at Mille Miglia 60 years ago as he was in an excellent second place at the wheel of his 300 SLR, likewise with a chance of victory, when an unfortunate defect ended his race on the Passo di Futa.
Around 430 cars from some 70 different brands are taking part in the Mille Miglia this year – the 60th event to be held under this name since 1927 – including almost 40 Mercedes-Benz cars. This strong presence is not a matter of course because only vehicle models that took part in one of the 24 original road races between 1927 and 1957 are allowed to participate in the Mille Miglia. But thanks to its close and long-standing ties with the Italian road race, Mercedes-Benz has an impressive number of models on this exclusive list. The line-up for the Mille Miglia 2015 includes the supercharged SS and SSK touring sports cars from the late 1920s plus the 300 SL (W 198) and 220 “Ponton” (W 180) models unveiled in 1954.