Coppa Acerbo

The birth of a mith

It’s 1923. Pescara, the city we know today, doesn’t exist. There are only two small villages, not so far from the sea and set right on the mouth of the Pescara river, named Castellamare Adriatico and Pescara. They’re villages with a few thousands of inhabitants, and most of them are fishermen or peasants, still attached to rhythms and life styles typical of the ‘800, and it’s just a few years that we can see the first signs of innovation. And it’s right here, in a sunny summer day, where 30 cars arrived to compete for a reliability trial, during the Abruzzese Week, a propagandist regional event. For the first time, thousands of Pescaresi, saw the parade of the best products of the automotive technology of the time, the first Alfa Romeo P1, Fiat 805, Benz, and for the first time they heard the roar of the engines running, finding themselves thrown in the XXth century. It was a huge success, far beyond the expectations of the organizer of the event, Giacomo Acerbo, who, in those years was already bonding his name to the fascist regime. So, on the advice of Conte De Sterlich Aliprandi, dynamic philanthropist, intellectual and innovator, Professor Acerbo decided to turn that first event into an yearly recurrence. A speed race on a 25 km circuit, that took place between the two cities and it was dedicated to his brother, who fell heroically during the First World War: Tito Acerbo. And so was born “La Coppa Acerbo”, and by looking at its first winner, a young Enzo Ferrari on an Alfa Romeo RL SS, they understand that a myth was just born. 1957 was probably the most significant year for the Pescarese competition, that Became for the first and only one time the venue of the Formula One World valid race. It was an extraordinary competition, epic, who Richard Williams, former chief sports editor of the Guardian has written a book: “The last road race”. The longest track on ever held in formula one race: 25.5 kilometers of twists, turns, climbs, descents and crazy long straights where another legendary driver raced and won, Stirling Moss on Vanwall.

The documentary

The documentary, recalls the history of the “Pescarese” competition, from the beginning until the years of great success and then to the final cancellation. Following the several events that changed it, the documentary open a break on the Italian and the international automotive industry developments, and on the history of racers and big names who became part of the legend, such as Ferrari, Fangio, Nuvolari, Moss and many others. Through the evolutions of this path, we will see the transformations of a city, of a social contest, of an entire nation, about its customs and traditions and its politics. 
Thanks to the collaboration of Richard Williams, and the contribution of fans and historians, the documentary has lot of interviews, photos, statements and footages (most of them unpublished), which return an accurate and authentic portrait, never realized before, about Coppa Acerbo.