Ludovico Scarfiotti was born to be a Ferrari driver. He was the son of a Member of the Italian Parliament who had been an amateur driver with Scuderia Ferrari during the 1930s. His father made a fortune as a cement manufacturer in Ancona.
Early racing career
Also the nephew of Fiat’s President Gianni Agnelli, Scarfiotti first raced in 1953 and he won his class in the 1956 Mille Miglia. He joined Ferrari in 1960 and finished fourth on the Targa Florio. Although he then drove for OSCA and Scuderia Serenissima, he returned to Ferrari in 1962 and won the European Hillclimb Championship for the marque.
Formula 1 and sports car success for Ferrari
In 1963 Scarfiotti became a leading light of Ferrari’s sports car team by winning at both Sebring and Le Mans and finishing second on the Targa Florio. He also made his Formula 1 championship debut that year when replacing the injured Willy Mairesse in the Dutch Grand Prix. He finished in sixth position to become the 31st driver to score points on his GP debut.
However, he suffered leg injuries a week later while practising for the French GP – prompting a premature announcement of his retirement from racing. He returned in 1964 and was successful once more in sports cars – winning at the Nürburgring. He also finished ninth in the Italian GP despite spinning during the race.
Grand Prix winner
Dominant European Hillclimb Champion and winner of the Nürburgring 1000Kms for a second time during 1965, Scarfiotti returned to Ferrari’s F1 team when John Surtees suddenly quit in the middle of 1966. He retired from the German GP and won in Italy on only his fourth world championship start.
He continued his successful sports car career in 1967 and was second at Daytona, Monza and Le Mans. He won in F1 again when he dead heated with team-mate Michael Parkes in the non-championship race at Syracuse in Sicily. However, Scarfiotti argued with Ferrari’s management so drove Dan Gurney’s Eagle in the Italian GP.
The break with Ferrari was permanent and he sought alternatives for 1968 – Porsche in hillclimbs and sports cars and as Cooper’s team leader in F1. The second round of the European Hillclimb Championship was at Rossfeld. Scarfiotti crashed into the woods when his car apparently stuck in fifth gear during practice. Thrown clear, he was killed instantly after hitting a tree.