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Galleria Ferrari

Photo: F1 heaven at Galleria Ferrari, Maranello, Italy 

The first time Enzo Ferrari witnessed a car racing event, he immediately knew what his life was destined to be. And even if his life-long works are very popular among car enthusiasts, never had he expected that his name would be one that is so coveted by everyone who’s anyone in today’s society.

Around the time of Enzo Ferrari’s birth in 1898, the name “Ferrari” was just as ordinary as any other “John” or “Joe”. But now, the Ferrari brand is one of the most sought after in the automobile industry, a definite entry in most people’s list of dream cars.

The popularity of Ferraris can be attributed to every single ounce of blood, sweat, and tear that Enzo Ferrari spent not only in strengthening the brand, but in his entire career in the automotive racing industry as well. With the Ferrari brand having a colorful history full of dramatic events and talented (not to mention dedicated) personnel, Enzo Ferrari was able to build a company/institution that would go on to be one of the most famous in the industry, even until now.

Race championships, world-renowned drivers, and innovative car models are just a few of the highlights associated with Ferrari’s rich past. Add to that the adrenaline-pumping speeds that Ferrari cars can travel, while still being able to sport sleek and fashionable looks that have set standards, benchmarks, and stereotypes in and out of the race world over the years. All these have made loyal followers out of most car fanatics, establishing the symbol of the Prancing Horse as more than just a brand, and not just about races and cars. It is passion in itself.

That same passion is the reason why the Galleria Ferrari was established in 1988. The structure serves as a museum for only the best memorabilia in Ferrari history, housing trophies, models, significant car parts, emblems, and other items that any Ferrari junkie would love to see.

Since Enzo Ferrari and his life’s works have made significant strides in enriching Italy’s culture through the years, the Galleria Ferrari is a well-loved attraction in the country. This one-of-a-kind facility is even situated in Maranello, a town just south of Enzo Ferrari’s birth place of Modena. Furthermore, this structure doesn’t just hold the many priceless Ferrari artifacts; it accurately depicts the developments, the struggles, and the ups and downs in Ferrari’s decades-worth of history.

History of Ferrari and its Founder

Early at the age of 10, Enzo Ferrari was already exuding that passion for automobile racing and even dreamt of becoming a race car driver. Soon after, Ferrari traded his formal education for chance to be a part of the automotive industry, working for a small carmaker while improving his racing skills by test driving the products. His knowledge on cars expanded too, mainly because of that exposure.

After World War I, Ferrari started taking up racing seriously, with a ninth place finish at the Targa Florio being the highlight. And just like that, he earned a job at Alfa Romeo in 1920 and even drove a modified production car during the races. His performance record saw significant improvements, with a series of high-place finishes tucked under his belt.

Ferrari had quite a long tenure at Alfa Romeo. Even when he retired from racing in 1929, he continued to assist in designing race car machinery, which he learned during his racing days with Alfa Romeo. It was during his days at Alfa Romeo when Ferrari was given a unique distinction of carrying the family crest of Italian flying ace Francesco Baracca, a martyr of World War I whom Ferrari admired and idolized. The symbol is one of the few remnants of Baracca’s plane when it crash landed, so Ferrari adopted it as his personal symbol when Baracca’s parents, Count Enrico and Countess Paolina, presented it to him. Currently, this insignia of the Prancing Horse on a yellow shield is well-known around the world as it can be seen on all bright red Ferraris, regardless if they are for racing or for sale to the public.

Ferrari was also able to establish the Scuderia Ferrari team, which had a beneficial relationship (sort of a subsidiary arrangement) with Ferrari’s employer Alfa Romeo. Overall, the Scuderia Ferrari team had a good run, scoring eight victories and several decent finishes in 22 events. However, it was discontinued in 1938 due to stiff competition from German racing companies, forcing Alfa Romeo to concentrate all its resources in forming a new stable called Alfa Corse.

This incident led to the founding of Ferrari’s very own company, Auto-Avio Costruzioni Ferrari. Despite experiencing a massive destruction of its workshop during World War II, Costruzioni Ferrari proved that it was just a slight bump on the road to greatness. After successfully rebuilding its workshop and constructing its first race car (the 125 Sport), the Ferrari winning tradition started, amassing victories left and right even up to this day.

Aside from the gifted drivers and engineers that have helped the Ferrari brand become a household name, Ferrari also benefited from Italian pride, gaining significant contributions and donations from countrymen like Fiat, Lancia, and others. And with everything already in place, the rest was history.

Inside the Galleria

Built in 1988 and inaugurated in February of 1990, this two-storey museum exhibits a bevy of racing cars that were driven only by the great Ferrari drivers like Gilles Villeneuve, Froilan Gonzales, Rubens Barrichello, Michael Schumacher, and many others.

In line with that, tons of historical information can be seen on the museum walls, including a display of various trophies earned in Ferrari’s more than fifty years of active competition. Among the notable accolades displayed are those won by Enzo Ferrari himself during his heydays as a race car driver, as well as the “fruits” of Schumacher’s F1 dominance.

Furthermore, there are monitors and images in the museum that highlight the important people, machines, and events that have been integral pieces in Ferrari’s emergence as a powerhouse in its industry. The company has made timeless contributions to the automobile industry through technological innovations and safety measures, which is why there are historical exhibits inside the museum that are related to the important stages in the development of the said industry.

On the upper floor of the Galleria Ferrari is a spot dedicated to the company’s innovative juices. Seen here are experimental models such as the 550 Barchetta Pininfarina and the F50, previous F1 racing cars and engines, F1-type gearshift paddles, and other technological discoveries of different times. Another fascinating attraction in the Galleria Ferrari is the amphitheater, where two F1 driving simulators await those who want to feel the rush of racing behind the wheel of a single-seater.

Since other related establishments (the Ferrari restaurant, the official Formula One shop, and the actual Ferrari factory) are positioned nearby, the Galleria Ferrari will surely give any visitor a complete dose of red racing fever that is “Ferrari Mania”.

Address: Via Dino Ferrari, 43 - 41053 Maranello, Italy
Phone Number: 053 694 32 04
Cost of Entry: Adults €12 - Students €10 - Children aged 6-10 €8
Opening Hours: 9.30am-6.00pm Mon-Sun -1st May to 30th September extended opening until 7:00pm.

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