Renato Balestrero

Renato Balestrero

27/7/1898 - 18/2/1948

Balestrero's career lasted 25 years and included over 200 races. He was run over and killed while showing his papers to a policeman who had stopped him on the Turin Autostrada.

Renato Balestrero from Lucca was a very busy and successful racer whose career had a 25-year span and included over 200 races. Balestrero started racing in 1924 with an OM. The list of his best placings is exemplary of a solid and quick semi-professional driver of the Italian school, with victories in some of the Italian classic races, such as Montenero, Pescara and Tripoli. Won the 1st Libyan Grand Prix driving a 2.0L O.M. as early as 1925. Raced Bugattis in 1927.

Balestrero moved up to international racing in 1934 when he drove a Maserati for Gruppo San Giorgio, and also raced his Alfa Romeo "Monza" which he purchased in 1933. Balestrero entered the new Monza in the 1934 Mille Miglia and placed a creditable sixth co-driving with Sanguinetti. Balestrero later sold the car to Uboldi Martini, but borrowed the Monza in April to enter the Mille Miglia, again with Sanguinetti, and again placed sixth. In December of 1935, Balestrero bought the car back from Martini and immediately sold it to Giovanni de Rham, who transferred ownership to his brother Giacomo.

From 1935 on he raced an Alfa Romeo Tipo B, entering it among other races in AVUS, Eifel GP and German GP 1937. Then he raced an Alfa Romeo 308 in 1938. He came back to Italian races after the war with a third in a Fiat 1100 at Genoa in 1946. Then in 1947 Benevento 3rd Fiat 1100, Sanremo 3rd Alfa Romeo Monza, MM 9th Fiat 1100 with Bracco. He was Italian Champion for the unlimited sports car class, winning his class at Vercelli, Aosta-Gran San Bernardo, Voghera, Sanremo hill climb, Piacenza and Varese, all in the Fiat-Stanguellini 2800 8C.

Renato Balestrero died 1948 after an accident on the Turin Autostrada. While Balestrero showed a police, that had stopped him, his papers he was run over by another car, fell and received a fractured skull. He died soon afterwards.

Results

  • 1924
    • 2nd Circuito del Tigullio 2-litre race 13/4  (OM 665)
    • DNF Coppa delle Perugina 18/5  (OM 665)
    • 1st 2-litre class Circuito del Savio, Ravenna -/5  (OM 665)
    • 1st 2-litre class Polesine race, Padua 1/6 (OM 665)
    • 1st 2-litre race Montenero  (OM 665)
    • 2st 2-litre class Circuito del Mugello 31/8  (OM 665)
  • 1925
    • DNF Premio Reale di Roma 22/2  (OM 665)
    • 1st 2-litre race Tripoli Grand Prix (OM 665)
    • 2nd 2-litre class Coppa Acerbo, Pescara 21/6  (OM 665)
    • 1st Coppa Vinci, Messina 5/7  (OM 665)
    • DNF Montenero race 16/8  (OM 665)
    • 3rd-FTD Coppa della Collina Pistoiese hillclimb 23/8  (OM 665)
    • DNF Garda 2-litre race 18/10  (OM 665)
    • 1st Circuito Apuano 2-litre race, Carrara 22/11  (OM 665)
    • placed Italian sportscar races (OM 665)
  • 1926
    • 1st Coppa Vinci, Messina 2/5  (OM 665)
    • 3rd Catania-Etna sportscar race 9/5  (OM 665)
    • FTD Targa Catalani hillclimb  (OM 665)
    • 3rd Coppa della Sila sportscar race, Cosenza 20/6  (OM 665)
    • DNF Le Mans 24hr race/Thélusson 12-13/6  (OM 665)
    • 2nd in class (4th overall) 12hr GP Guipuzcoa, Lasarte/Danieli -/7  (OM 665)
    • unplaced Montenero race 15/8  (OM 665)
  • 1927
    • 2nd 2-litre race Tripoli 6/3 (Bugatti 35C)
    • DNF Circuit of Pozzo, Verona 20/3, and f/l (Bugatti 35C)
    • 2nd Mille Miglia/Danieli 26-27/3 (OM Superba)
    • DNF Targa Florio 24/4 (Bugatti 35C)
    • 2nd Coppa Vinci, Messina 8/5, and f/l (Bugatti 35C)
    • 2nd Perugia 29/5 (Bugatti 35C)
    • 3rd Rome Grand Prix 12/6 (Bugatti 35C)
  • 1928
    • 1st 5-litre class Mille Miglia/Minoia 26-27/3 (La Salle)
    • FTD Massarosa-Monte di Quiesa hillclimb 29/6 (La Salle)
    • 2nd Circuito della Val d'Elsa sportscar race 1/7 (La Salle)
    • FTD Italian sportscar hillclimb (La Salle)
  • 1929
    • 2nd-FTD Massarosa-Monte di Quiesa hillclimb 29/6 (Bugatti 35C)
    • 1st Coppa Camaiore 7/7 (Bugatti 35C)
    • 10th Coppa Ciano, Montenero 21/7 (Bugatti 35C)
  • 1930
    • 3rd 3-litre class Mille Miglia/Bornigia -/4 (OM)
    • DNF Targa Florio 4/5 (OM)
  • 1931
    • 2nd in class Mille Miglia/Cortese 11-12/4 (Alfa 1750 Berlinetta)
    • 7th 10hr Italian Grand Prix/Ruggeri 24/5 (Talbot 1700)
    • 5th 2-litre heat Rome Grand Prix 7/6, unplaced final (Talbot 1700)
    • 8th Coppa Acerbo, Pescara 16/8 (Bugatti 35C)
    • 6th 2-litre heat Monza GP 6/9 (Bugatti 35C)
  • 1932
    • 1st Targa Abruzzi sportscar race, Pescara 15/8 (Alfa Romeo)
  • 1933
    • 6th Gran Premio di Tripoli 7/5 (Alfa Romeo)
    • 2nd Targa Florio 28/5 (Alfa Romeo)
    • DSQ Lwow Grand Prix (dissobeyed refueling instructions) (Alfa Romeo)
    • 2nd Coppa M Bianchi sportscar race, Cosenza 23/7 (Alfa Romeo)
    • 2nd Avellino sportscar race 6/8 (Alfa Romeo)
    • 2nd sports (3rd-FTD) Stelvio hillclimb 27/8 (Alfa Romeo)
    • 9th Italian Grand Prix 10/9 (Alfa Romeo)
    • 5th Monza GP 10/9 (Alfa Romeo)
    • 1st in class Semmering hillclimb 24/9 (Alfa Romeo)
    • FTD minor Italian hillclimb (Alfa Romeo)
  • 1934
    • DNF Monaco Grand Prix 2/4 (Gruppo San Giorgio 2.6 Monza Alfa)
    • DNF Tripoli GP 6/5 (Gruppo San Giorgio 2.6 Monza Alfa)
    • 4th Targa Florio 20/5 (Gruppo San Giorgio 2.6 Monza Alfa)
    • 1st sportscar Kesselberg hillclimb (Gruppo San Giorgio 2.6 Monza Alfa)
    • DNF Marne GP Rheims 8/7 (Gruppo San Giorgio 2.6 Monza Alfa)
    • DNF German Grand Prix 15/7 (Gruppo San Giorgio 2.6 Monza Alfa)
    • 1st sportscar (6th-FTD) Klausen hillclimb 29/7 (Gruppo San Giorgio 2.6 Monza Alfa)
    • 6cl Freiburg hillclimb (Gruppo San Giorgio 2.6 Monza Alfa)
    • 1st sportscar Mont Ventoux hillclimb (Gruppo San Giorgio 2.6 Monza Alfa)
    • placed in Italian hillclimbs (Gruppo San Giorgio 2.6 Monza Alfa)
    • DNF Swiss Grand Prix 16/8 (Maserati)
  • 1935
    • 5th Targa Florio 28/4 (Alfa Romeo)
    • ?? Tunis GP 5/5 (Maserati)
    • 1st in class (3rd-FTD) Kesselberg hillclimb 30/6 (Alfa)
    • DNF German Grand Prix 28/7 - crashed (Alfa Romeo)
    • 2nd in class Grossglockner hillclimb 4/8 (Alfa Monza)
    • 12th Swiss Grand Prix 25/8 (Maserati)
    • 1st in class Freiburg hillclimb 1/9 (Alfa Romeo)
    • 2nd in class Freiburg hillclimb 1/9 (Alfa Romeo sports)
    • 2nd in heat Lucca 29/9, unplaced final (Alfa Romeo)
  • 1936
    • contested Italian international events without success (Alfa Romeo)
  • 1937
    • 5th in heat Avusrennen 30/5 (Maserati)
    • 3rd in class Targa Abruzzo, Pescara, 14/6 (Alfa Romeo 2300 A)
    • DNF German Grand Prix 25/7 (Alfa Romeo P3)
    • 3rd in class Freiburg hillclimb (Alfa Romeo)
    • 5th touring class Stelvio hillclimb -/8 (Alfa Romeo)
  • 1938
    • 3rd Nat Sport class Sassi-Superga hillclimb 24/4 (Alfa 6C-2300)
    • 7th German Grand Prix 24/7 (Alfa Romeo 308)
    • 1st Nat Sport class (5th-FTD) Stelvio hc 21/8 (Alfa 6C-2300)
  • 1939
    • contested Italian vointurette races without success (Maserati)
    • 3rd-FTD Argegno-Lanzo d'Intelvi hillclimb 23/7 (Alfa 6C-2300)
  • 1940
    • Tripoli voiturette Grand Prix 12/5 (Maserati)
    • 10th Targa Florio (Scuderia Torino Maserati 6CM)
  • 1941-45
    • no racing
  • 1946
    • 3rd Genoa sportscar race 16/9 (Fiat 2800)
  • 1947
    • 3rd San Remo sportscar race 13/4 (Alfa Romeo)
    • 3rd in class Piacenza sportscar race 11/5 (Fiat)
    • 9th Mille Miglia/Bracco 21-22/6 (Fiat 508C MM coupé)
    • 3rd Bari GP 13/7 (Alfa Romeo)
    • 3rd Benevento sportscar race 13/7 (Fiat Stanguellini 1100)
    • 1st in class Aosta-Gran San Bernardo hillclimb 10/8 (Fiat)
    • placed minor Italian hillclimbs (Alfa Romeo and Fiat)
    • 1st Italian Sportscar Championship

Information supplied by Alessandro Silva and Hans Etzrodt with additions

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