The ex-Autodelta, sole known 2.5 litre

1968 Alfa Romeo Tipo 33/2 Daytona

Any Alfa Romeo Tipo 33 is special, but some more than others and this car arguably more than any: it is the sole known Tipo 33/2 to feature a factory 2.5 litre engine rather than the usual 2 litre, thus combining the prettiest bodystyle with greater performance. Deployed by the Autodelta works team for the 1968 season, the published race record of chassis ‘015’ reads as follows:
 
1968
 
-Daytona 24 Hours (race no. 23, Andretti/ Bianchi), 6th
-Targa Florio (race no. 220, Vaccarella/ Schutz), retired
-Nurburgring 1,000Kms (race no. 5, Schutz/ Bianchi), 7th
-Mugello GP (race no. 3, Bianchi/ Vaccarella/ Galli), 1st
-Austrian 500Kms (race no. 6, Pilette), 4th
 
1969
 
Sold to Belgian Count Rudi van der Straten’s Racing Team VDS for the 1969 season, results were as follows:
 
-Monza 1,000Kms (race no. 19, Pilette/ Slotemaker), 8th
-Targa Florio (on loan to Autodelta- race no. 262, Vaccarella/ De Adamich), 39th
-Nurburgring 1,000Kms (race no. 16, Pilette/ Slotemaker), retired
-Spa 1,000Kms (race no. 16, Pilette/ Slotemaker), 6th
-Le Mans 24 Hours (race no. 36, Pilette/ Slotemaker), retired
 
As often happened with old racing cars after their frontline years, at the 1969 season’s end an attractive offer from a Portuguese driver saw ‘015’ headed for distant shores, arriving in the Portuguese colony of Angola where it was to continue racing, 1970-1974 until laid up with a friend of the owner as a result of the civil war. The car remained here, largely forgotten by the outside world, until a casual conversation between a French businessman stuck at Luanda airport and his local translator resulted in a trip to see ‘an old car’ he knew about in the local countryside. Amazed at what he was shown, the Frenchman- already an avid car collector- tracked down the owner to Lisbon whereupon negotiations began the acquire the Alfa- ultimately successful and involving dollars, a JVC video recorder, a moped and a spare Ford Cortina engine, all of which were presumably more immediately useful than a non-running old racing car. It took a few years more, however, to obtain permission to export the car which was finally airlifted out by Hercules cargo ‘plane to France where it sat again, under a tarpaulin, until sold at auction by Simon Kidston in December 1994.
 
At this point the car returned to Italy in the hands of a new owner where it was finally restored to its original 1968 appearance and condition, returning to the race track in the early 2000s. America was its next port of call where a caring enthusiast has looked after and raced it occasionally for the past five years: bills for $201,642 attest to this. A fascinating example of Alfa Romeo’s ‘60s glory days, it is now ready for the next chapter in its colourful life…