It isn’t any secret that Alfonso Cabeza de Vaca y Leighton, Marquis de Portago, is one of my favourite spanish pilots, possibly because of his intense and short sporting life. He had youth and courage against the experience and ability of his competitors in the hard mission of getting a place in the legendary Ferrari company.
Finally he managed to get it, though very briefly, since as we all know, he died in the next year’s Mille Miglia after his participation and victory in the Tour Auto from 1956, which is the model we reproduce this time.
The inscription was impressive, with brands like Mercedes, Porsche, Jaguar, Alfa Romeo and Ferrari, and such great pilots like Moss, Schell, Trintignant, Frere, Gendebien, Behra, Mollet and Portago.
The Tour Auto was a combination of slopes, circuits and long intersection parts, where the navigation required a good copilot. Like many other times, that place would be taken by his good friend Edgar Nelson.
The race, really hard, was a fight between the Mercedes, the Ferrari of Portago and the Porsche 356 of Behra. After endless problems, windshield breaks, spins and a crash in the racetrack with the impulsive Trintignant, Portago finally wins and achieves what would become his greatest victory as car driver and the first Spaniard to win the Tour of France Auto.
Here is this new Slot Classic reference as a tribute to one of the most charismatic Spanish pilots ever.
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