Tag Archives: F1

The Last Run

"The Last Run" by automotive artist, © Thierry Thompson

“The Last Run”, Gilles Villeneuve exits his #27 Ferrari 126C2 at Zolder, Belgium, 1982. © Thierry Thompson

The first time this image caught my eye, it was in the pages of a fairly new publication at that time called, ” Automobile Magazine “. The image was so direct and powerful of the late Ferrari pilot, Gilles Villeneuve, that it immediately captivated me and has held my attention to this day.

The image was accompanied with a brief article on the artist, Thierry Thompson, and his poignant image of Gilles titled ” The Last Run “. It immediately struck an emotional cord showing Gilles climbing out of the cockpit of his Formula 1 Ferrari 126C2 for the last time on that fateful day in Belgium, prior to his last qualifying appearance on May 8, 1982. The red number 27 is symbolically parked with one wheel over the yellow pit line – a metaphor of his relentless drive to win at all cost, often crossing the line.

From that first time I saw the image, it took me some time to track the artist, as search engines and the internet in the late 80’s were in their infancy. Once I was able to find his address in Carmel, it was still difficult to get in contact with him, let alone find him or a gallery that sold his artwork. I did finally contact a gallery by telephone and was able to talk to a very kind lady to express my interest in the image. At that time, she did explain that the run of images had sold out, but that Thierry would be doing a “redux” run of the same image, with a minor change – adding a touch of fluorescent colors. Although the “redux” edition is almost an identical to the original, I preferred to acquire an original version of the print.

When Thierry opened his gallery, Light + Shadow Fine Art in Carmel-by-the-Sea, I paid a visit there. I was immediately greeted by the gallery director and Thierry’s wife, Beverly. A kind and friendly person, I have visited the gallery on several occasion and always enjoy spending time talking to her and the work that Thierry has done and is currently working on. I have yet to meet Thierry, as the demand for his art work, keeps him at his studio most of the time. I am looking forward to one day meet him.

This brings me to Thierry’s image of Gilles. For years, I have been watching eBay to see if this image ever came up for sale. I have bought several of Thierry’s images through eBay and have never been disappointed. The beauty, the brilliant colors and complexity to which Thierry captures the details in his work, makes me fortunate to own several his wonderful prints.

Finally, it happened. ” The Last Run ” was listed on eBay after more than a decade of me patiently waiting and almost 3 decades since I first saw the image. After watching and waiting for the right opportunity, I bought the image. It is an ” Artist Proof “, meaning that it is one of about ten or so that were printed and which the artist approves before the limited edition run of 500 are made. To say that I am elated to finally have this image in my collection is a vast understatement!

I finally have the image of Gilles that I have always wanted.

Vic

light+shadow fine art
Thierry Thompson – Automotive Fine Art
Thierry Thompson – Aviation Fine Art

Villeneuve – 312 T5

312 T5 - LIMITED EDITION LEGENDS NEVER DIE - #002 GILLES VILLENEUVE

312 T5 – LIMITED EDITION LEGENDS NEVER DIE – #002 GILLES VILLENEUVE

Looking for Christmas gift ideas for that guy/gal who loves everything racing? Well, here’s a great silk screened poster from CURB.

312 T5 – LIMITED EDITION LEGENDS NEVER DIE – #002 GILLES VILLENEUVE – Art by Stuart Macey for Curb.

Limited to just 50 prints, numbered and embossment stamped for authenticity. This is the 2nd in a series of posters celebrating the greatest Formula 1 drivers in the history of the sport and will be an on going series of art from CURB.

He was the craziest devil I ever came across in Formula 1… The fact that, for all this, he was a sensitive and lovable character rather than an out-and-out hell-raiser made him such a unique human being  –  Niki Lauda

Ferrari Celebrates 60 Years in the US… and I meet Piero Ferrari.

Race Through The Decades: 1954-2014. The 60th Anniversary of Ferrari in the USA

Race Through The Decades: 1954-2014. The 60th Anniversary of Ferrari in the USA

I almost missed this event, having been focused on several client’s websites in the last few weeks.  A chance mention in a Peterson Museum post on Facebook had me asking my wife if I could skip her birthday brunch that Sunday.  Since we had already celebrated with dinner a few days ago, she kindly let me off the hook to attend.

Having attended several car events on Rodeo Drive over the years, I arrived early to secure a parking space close to the event as they are at a premium if you get there later in the morning.

1963 Ferrari 250 GTO - 4293 GT.  © 2014 Victor Varela

1963 Ferrari 250 GTO – 4293 GT. © 2014 Victor Varela

As I walked along Rodeo, the street was already busy with a crowd of enthusiast and visitors ogling the Italian steeds parked along the palm tree lined street.  I took several images in between the folks admiring and taking pictures as I headed south towards the corner of Wilshire and Rodeo.  The level of rarity and historic significance of the cars I photographed was astounding.  Le Mans, Mille Miglia and other race winners, custom one-offs and rare examples made this a truly unique automotive gathering in the history of the marquee.

I made my way to the press check-in and although securing a pass was not to difficult, the significance of having and using one here was more of a souvenir item as I witnessed several folks, including teens, obtaining one quite easily.  I gathered the information I needed from the PR person and continued to circulate and capture images as best I could as the crowds had grown exponentially.

Piero Ferrari, Vice Chairman of Ferrari, arrives in a 250 GT SWB California. © 2014 Victor Varela

Piero Ferrari, Vice Chairman of Ferrari, arrives in a 250 GT SWB California. © 2014 Victor Varela

I headed to the stage area before mid-day, to view and capture images of the F60 unveiling.  I was planning on meeting Luca di Montezemolo and maybe getting his autograph, but as he announced his “forced” retirement as President and Chairman of Ferrari S.p.A. – effective the following day, it did not surprise me that he was absent from today’s event.

2013 Ferrari F138 Formula One race car. © 2014 Victor Varela

2013 Ferrari F138 Formula One race car. © 2014 Victor Varela

The Ferrari executives were all driven up to the staging area in Ferraris with the California namesake ranging from the 250 GT California to the new California T.  They included John Elkann, Chairman of FCA, Sergio Marchionne, CEO of FCA and Chairman of Ferrari, Amedeo Felisa, CEO of Ferrari, and Piero Ferrari, Vice Chairman of Ferrari.

Bruce Meyer, Sergio Marchionne, Piero Ferrari and John Elkann. along with other VIPs during the unveiling of the 2015 F60 America. © 2014 Victor Varela

With Bruce Meyer and TV personality, Mario Lopez, serving as MC’s, the F60 America was unveiled with applause and cheers from the crowd.  With the absence of Montezemolo from the celebration, I focused my attention on meeting and hopefully having Piero Ferrari autograph my press card.  As I waited at the foot of the stairs leading to the stage, I found my opportunity and asked him for his autograph.  We spoke briefly and shook hands before he retreated from the crowd that started to gather around him.  A momentous occasion for me as I have been a fan and admirer of the Scuderia, his father and Ferrari in general since the late 70’s.

Piero Ferrari, Vice Chairman of Ferrari S.p.A. © 2014 Victor Varela

Piero Ferrari, Vice Chairman of Ferrari S.p.A. © 2014 Victor Varela

I continued to capture images, still under the euphoria of meeting Piero Ferrari and left the event knowing I attended a truly unique automotive celebration.

A report with images have been submitted to Sports Car Digest and will hopefully be published before week’s end.

 

Purchase Prints…
If you would like a print for your wall at home, office or race shop, I offer quality prints of the images you see here and others that were captured during this event. You can purchase them here: Photo Store

 

UPDATE 10/16/2014:  My report and images of the Ferrari celebration, have been published online at Sports Car Digest:  Ferrari 60th Anniversary Gathering

 

My press pass, autographed by Piero Lardi Ferrari at the “Race Through The Decades”: 1954-2014. © 2014 Victor Varela

 

Vic

 

The unauthorized use and/or duplication of any editorial or photographic content from victorvarela.com:blog without express and written permission from Victor Varela, is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to victorvarela.com:blog with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

 

Grand Prix

Grand Prix Movie Poster © Copyright 1966 MGM/Warner Bros.

Grand Prix Movie Poster © Copyright 1966 MGM/Warner Bros.

American Grand Prix driver Pete Aron (James Garner) is fired by his Jordan-BRM racing team after a crash at Monaco that injures his British teammate, Scott Stoddard (Brian Bedford). While Stoddard struggles to recover, Aron begins to drive for the Japanese Yamura team, and becomes romantically involved with Stoddard’s estranged wife (Jessica Walter). American Grand Prix driver Pete Aron (James Garner) is fired by his Jordan-BRM racing team after a crash at Monaco that injures his British teammate, Scott Stoddard (Brian Bedford). While Stoddard struggles to recover, Aron begins to drive for the Japanese Yamura team, and becomes romantically involved with Stoddard’s estranged wife (Jessica Walter). American Grand Prix driver Pete Aron (James Garner) is fired by his Jordan-BRM racing team after a crash at Monaco that injures his British teammate, Scott Stoddard (Brian Bedford). While Stoddard struggles to recover, Aron begins to drive for the Japanese Yamura team, and becomes romantically involved with Stoddard’s estranged wife (Jessica Walter). John Frankenheimer directed this winner of three Academy Awards, crafting split-screen images to capture the overlapping drama and orchestrating you-are-there POV camerawork to intensify the hard-driving thrills. Nearly 30 top drivers took part in this ground-breaking 1966 film. Buckle up to race with the best!John Frankenheimer directed this winner of three Academy Awards, crafting split-screen images to capture the overlapping drama and orchestrating you-are-there POV camerawork to intensify the hard-driving thrills. Nearly 30 top drivers took part in this ground-breaking 1966 film. Buckle up to race with the best!John Frankenheimer directed this winner of three Academy Awards, crafting split-screen images to capture the overlapping drama and orchestrating you-are-there POV camerawork to intensify the hard-driving thrills. Nearly 30 top drivers took part in this ground-breaking 1966 film. Buckle up to race with the best!

[source: YouTube]

Weekend of a Champion

Jackie Stewart © image respective owner.

Jackie Stewart from the documentary, Weekend of a Champion © image respective owner.

Roman Polanski’s racing documentary about Jackie Stewart and his weekend during the Monaco Grand Prix has been remastered and will be re-released for the US on May 20th, available for download through iTunes and DVD through Amazon.

In 1971, motor racing fan Roman Polanski spent a weekend with world champion driver Jackie Stewart as he fought to win the Monaco Grand Prix. Polanski was given intimate access to Stewart’s world for three days, both on the track and off. The result is an extraordinarily rare glimpse into the life of a gifted athlete at the height of his powers. Forty years on, Polanski and Stewart meet once again. In a remarkable post-script, they discuss the sport, both past and present, with a unique and unmatched perspective. [source: iTunes]

 

 

20 Years Ago, The Loss of a Racing Hero

Ayrton Senna © image respective owner.

Ayrton Senna © image respective owner.

 Ayrton Senna da Silva, March 21, 1960 – May 1, 1994

 

 

Ayrton Senna McLaren MP4/8 © 1993 image respective owner.

Ayrton Senna McLaren MP4/8 © 1993 image respective owner.

“If I ever happen to have an accident that eventually costs me my life, I hope it is in one go. I would not like to be in a wheelchair. I would not like to be in a hospital suffering from whatever injury it was. If I am going to live, I want to live fully. Very intensely, because I am an intense person. It would ruin my life if I had to love partially.”  – Ayrton Senna

 

Home” theme from the documentary movie, Senna.

 

Ayrton Senna in his Williams Renault © 1994 image respective owner.

Ayrton Senna:
The inside story of the Formula One legend’s death at Imola

 

 

Ayrton Senna da Silva © 1994 image respective owner.

[images source: internet © their respective owner]
[music: “Home theme” from the movie, “Senna” iTunes]

(video source: YouTube)

COPYRIGHT DISCLAIMER: Under Section 107 of the Copyright Act 1976, allowance is made for “fair use” for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching, scholarship, and research. Fair use is a use permitted by copyright law that might otherwise be infringing. Please support your favorite artists by buying their creative works through official outlets wherever possible.

Roland Ratzenberger, Remembered

Roland Ratzenberger

Roland Ratzenberger (AUT) San Marino GP, Imola, Italy, 30 April 1994. © 1994 image respective owner.

On this day, Roland Ratzenberger lost his life at the wheel of his Simtek F1 car while qualifying for the 1994 San Marino Grand Prix at Imola.

COPYRIGHT DISCLAIMER: Under Section 107 of the Copyright Act 1976, allowance is made for “fair use” for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching, scholarship, and research. Fair use is a use permitted by copyright law that might otherwise be infringing. Please support your favorite artists by buying their creative works through official outlets wherever possible.