Jaguar Heritage Racing again tackled the legendary Mille Miglia classic car endurance event from the 15th to the 18th of May with a line-up of top-name drivers. The rally consists of driving over 1,000 grueling miles from Brescia to Rome and back to Brescia in a series of timed stages.
This year’s Mille Miglia was packed full of famous cars and equally famous drivers the combination of Jaguar Heritage Racing’s 1951 Ecurie Ecosse XK 120 roadster with Jay Leno and Ian Callum is hard to beat, however a combination of Martin Brundle and Bruno Senna in a D-type could well push them.
Martin Brundle commented: “As some people know, I’m a fan and owner of the E-type – but this D-type is phenomenal car. I can only imagine how brave my racing driver predecessors were to pilot it at 190mph-plus down the Mulsanne Straight.
Bruno Senna added: “The D-type is one of the most beautiful racing cars ever made – and it’s a real privilege to drive it on the Mille Miglia in its 60th anniversary year.
With D-type production beginning in 1954, the sight of this legendary Jaguar model in this year’s Mille Miglia is a fitting way to celebrate its 60th anniversary in 2014.
US TV chat show host, Jaguar collector and classic car enthusiast, Jay Leno, and Jaguar Design Director, Ian Callum, are legends of the automotive industry – and at the Mille Miglia this year their presence is complemented by that of the 1951 XK 120 Ecurie Ecosse roadster.
One of the most valuable and important XK 120s in the world, ‘LXO 126’ is the only surviving example of three original cars built to launch the Scottish racing team in 1952. A race winner in its period, it is most famously associated with raffish Anglo-Scottish aristocrat Sir James Scott-Douglas.
Ian Callum, Jaguar Design Director, said: “As a Scotsman, Ecurie Ecosse is incredibly close to my heart – so the chance to drive this incredible XK 120 through Italy is a once in a lifetime opportunity. Factor in a co-driver who’s almost as much of a Jaguar man as me – and there’s no doubt I’m going to love every minute!”
Jay Leno commented: “I’m fortunate to have an XK 120 in my garage – not to mention a few other incredible cars from Coventry – but this Ecurie Ecosse XK 120 is one of the most beautiful Jaguars ever built. I absolutely adore it. It’s a real honour to be asked to drive it on the Mille Miglia and to be able to revel in its history with someone like Ian is a true privilege.”
In this accompanying video Jay gets a chance for an interview with Stirling Moss about winning the race back in 1955, and racer Martin Brundle about what it’s like to drive the long-nose Jaguar D-type.