One of the largest assemblage of historic race cars in the 18 years of the California Mille will be on display atop San Francisco’s Nob Hill between Mason and California Streets on April 27 from 11 AM- 6 PM. In addition, some 50 Palo Alto Concours d’Elegance classics will be around Nob Hill’s Huntington Park as a preview of the Palo Alto show scheduled for June 22 at Stanford.
The California Mille (MILL-ee) salutes Italy’s famed Mille Miglia (thousand mile) race that ran from Brescia to Rome to Brescia from 1927-1957. Cars that could have qualified for the original event are eligible to apply for entry in the California Mille.
This year’s cars will include some l5 Jaguars, 11 Alfa Romeos, 9 Mercedes-Benz as well as such rarely seen and exotic makes as Talbot-Lago, Nash Healey, Allard, Aceca-Bristol, Hudson Hornet, Kurtis, Cisitalia,
Cunningham, and Delahaye. Participants are expected from l5 U.S. states and six nations: Australia, Colombia, Switzerland, the U.K., Canada and the U.S.
On Monday, April 28, the Mille cars will line up on Mason St., with the oldest vehicle, a 1926 Bentley 6.5 liter from Switzerland, nearest the departure arch. At exactly 9:00 AM a giant Blancpain clock will strike the hour and the green, white and red Italian flag will wave the California Mille through a departure arch. The 1000-mile route will take the Mille west on California Street, into the Presidio, and across the Golden Gate Bridge, then northeast to Rio Vista, Walnut Grove and a lunch stop in Lodi.
The tour continues on Day l to Highway 88 and Jackson, Lake Tahoe and Incline Village for the night.
Day 2 will see the Mille passing through historic Grass Valley and Nevada City, then on to Yuba City and a lunch stop at Colusa. That afternoon, the group will follow Highway 20 to Nice, Lucerne, Ukiah with dinner at the Little River Inn in Mendocino.
On Day 3, the Mille will depart at 9:00 AM for Fort Bragg and Westport, through the Avenue of the Giants to Honeydew and lunch at Curley’s restaurant in Victorian Ferndale. In the afternoon, the California Mille will
drive to Rio Dell, onto Highway l to Leggett and a return to Mendocino for dinner and overnight with half the Mille staying at the Little River Inn and the other half at the Mendocino Hotel.
Day 4 will conclude the thousand-mile adventure with a surprise. After departing the Little River Inn, the Mille will take Highway 101 to Pt. Arena, Gualala, Valley Ford, Pt. Reyes Station, with lunch scheduled at Rancho Nicasio. At 2:l5 PM, the Mille cars will take a loose parade formation for “the best road of the entire tour”: a drive along Ridgecrest Boulevard with the Pacific Ocean on one side and Mt. Tamalpais on the other. After a group photo atop “Tam”, the California Mille will drive toward Mill Valley and their ultimate and secret destination. According to organizer Martin Swig, “We’ll be the first guests at the most spectacular new resort in the area…one that combines California history, stunning views and world class accommodations.” That evening awards will be presented and special guests introduced at at a deluxe dinner at the new resort.
The California Mille, a not-for-profit event presented by Amici americani della Mille Miglia, is one of series of motoring tours under the direction of Martin Swig, including The Anti-Football Drive (for car enthusiasts would would rather drive than watch football on TV) and The Mille Autunno, a fall drive from Los Angeles to Sausalito –on non-freeway roads only.
The Mille is sponsored by San Francisco’s Fairmont Hotel, Blancpain Watches, the Lodi Wine Growers, British Motors Jaguar, KSFO 560 AM Radio, Symbolic Motor Car Company, the Nob Hill Gazette and UBS Switzerland.
For information: Amici americani della Mille Miglia, 154 Mitchell Blvd., San Rafael, CA 94903, or www.californiamille.com
For general information: Martin Swig 415 479-9950.
On the road: 415 990-9992
For press information: Ron Wren 415-433-1040