JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – A special class of Italian exotics will become part of history on March 13 when three Bizzarrini 5300 SI Spyders take to Amelia’s 21st annual concours field, to honor and commemorate the rare and exotic breed’s 50th anniversary.
The shapes that flowed from Giotto Bizzarrini’s mind were sumptuous, efficient and enduring. His most famous work is the eternal Ferrari GTO that was more the creation of a sculptor than an engineer.
Then came Ferrari’s so called “mutiny of the brains”. Scuderia Ferrari was fresh from its first Formula 1 World Constructors Championship season. They’d won Le Mans and the World Sports Car Championship, too. But, once again, there was blood. A Ferrari 156 “Sharknose” speared into the Monza crowd during the Italian Grand Prix. Its driver and several spectators died. And there was a civil war brewing in the Scuderia.
Inside the Ferrari team, the men who built and raced the cars and won the championships were weary of meddling by Signora Ferrari who, for reasons known only to her, traveled with the Ferrari racing team during that benighted championship season.
Giotto Bizzarrini was one of Ferrari’s “brains” and he paid a high price for Ferrari’s temper. He was among those expelled from the Scuderia during one of the commendatore’s poisonous tantrums. With a family to support, engineer and gifted test driver Bizzarrini created a fast grand touring car that would ultimately bear his name. Just over 100 Bizzarrinis were hand built. They were conceptualized and designed as coupes. Somehow three open-top spyders were created. All three will be reunited at the 21st annual Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance on March 13, 2016.
“When the man who created the Ferrari GTO and the original Lamborghini V-12 engine builds a car and puts his name on it, hard core ‘car guys’ pay close attention,” said Mark Becker, vice chairman of the Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance. “Even with Chevy V-8 power that most of us associate with muscle cars, Bizzarrinis have a strong Italian accent. The Bizzarrini 5300 Spyder is so rare that very few hard core Italian car aficionados have even seen one let alone all three of them together.”
The 2016 Amelia Island Concours d'Elegance will be held March 11-13 on the 10th and 18th fairways of The Golf Club of Amelia Island at The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island. For more information, visit www.ameliaconcours.org or call 904-636-0027.