VIDEO | Check out this insane 1932 Maserati pit stop
... to find a lot of similarities with modern racing (and -fortunately- a few changes too 😅)
Watch the video first (spoiler, it's 25 seconds, but still a recap of the total time needed for a 1930s pit stop!) and read on for my analysis of what makes this footage so exciting. So exhilarating in fact, I'd give my right foot to be the driver of that Maserati. Although... that would complicate driving the no. 8 considerably.
So what makes this footage of Amedeo Ruggeri in his Maserati 8C 2800 during the 1932 Targa Florio so special? For me, at least in part, it's because of all the similarities with modern racing. Sure, a present day Formula 1 pit stop is a clockwork operation, with a few dozen men and women perfecting their every move (I recently visited the McLaren Technology Centre to find their F1 team practicing pit stops indoor on a dummy car), but if you bring it back to the bare essentials it's still a team of mechanics lifting up a car trying to change the wheels as quickly as possible.
Thankfully, there's been a lot of changes too. Did you notice the guy putting a big funnel in the fuel tank so most of the fuel he's gulping in there will make it to the engine eventually? Dangerous you say? Well it's not as if everyone was still smoking in and around cars in the 30s. O wait...
I also love how getting the wheels off is a matter of just hammering away and hoping for the best. No pneumatics involved there. Getting the wheels back on? A reverse operation and if I was Amedeo I'd spend my first few miles praying to the Gods of speed for the wheels to stay on. I'd save praying for a win for later. Much later.
The Maserati made it to the finish line of the 1932 Targa Florio with all fours firmly attached to the car. The race was won by Tazio Nuvolari in his Alfa Romeo 8C 2300. Ruggeri finished 5th.