As Miss Meghan Markle was about to marry her beloved Prince Harry in UK, I left Parma for the fourth leg of Mille Miglia race. For those who are not familiar with it, this is maybe the most famous Italian competition for historic cars, and it starts from Brescia, heads to Rome and ends up where it began, after driving one thousand miles in four days through roads open to normal traffic. Chopard, the Swiss watch and jewellery maison which has been sponsoring it for the last 30 years, invited me and they didn’t have to ask twice.
I knew it was going to be exciting; I couldn’t imagine getting so emotional as we went through cities and little villages. The driver and I spent the whole day surrounded by other incredible vehicles, on a beautiful Porsche Speedster 356, dated 1955 coming from the Porsche Museum in Stuttgart. We saw terrific nature and architecture, but most of all we met the people. The old and the young, Mille Miglia fans and passers-by: they waved and smiled to us with a spontaneity that touched me deeply. They are the real soul of Italy, my country, a complicated mix of creativity and craziness, a place where cars and races can still inflame our hearts and make us stop and cheer.
My Mille Miglia experience will be forever in my heart as the day I felt like a queen, not because I had the privilege to join the race. The warmth that the teams and the people shared mile after mile was the purest form of love. The one that you give, just for the sake of it.
Below, Karl-Friedrich Scheufele, Co- President of Chopard, ran with the old times Formula One champion, Jackie Icks. To celebrate the 30th anniversary of Chopard’s partnership with the race, the Swiss brand launched a special limited, numbered and COSC_certified Mille Miglia 2018 Race Edition watch.
Photos Alexandra Pauli.