Obituary

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We are deeply saddened to hear Guilio Ramponi died in South Africa in December, at the age of 84. Ramponi began his motor racing career when he became riding-mechanic to the great Antonio Ascari in the Alfa Romeo team. In fact, Ascari taught him to drive. Ramponi remained a racing department mechanic with Alfa Romeo from 1924 to 1933, by which time Enzo Ferrari taken over.

In 1928 he shared the wheel of the winning Alfa Romeo with Campari in the Mille Miglia and at Brooklands won the Essex Six-Hour sports-car race in a 1 1/2-litre Romeo he had prepared himself. In 1929 he again won the Mille Miglia with Campari in an Alfa Romeo, and won the JCC Double Twelve-hour race at Brooklands in a 1 1/2-litre Alfa. Whitney Straight recognised Ramponi’s skill in working on racing cars and appointed him head mechanic on his own cars. He then went to Dick Seaman, preparing the MG Magnette, ERA and Maserati cars in Seaman stable, but being best remembered for his remarkable rebuild of the old ex-Earl Howe GP Delage, which enabled Dick to virtually dominate the 1 1/2-litre races of 1936. He also worked on the Alfa Romeos Seaman shared with Harry Rose and Hans Ruesch.

Ramponi went in later years to Lodge Plugs, working in a technical capacity, never lost interest in the sport he had come to love and retained a warm friendship with its many exponents in this country. WB

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