This month, Melburnians Andrew and Paul Lawson will do just that, driving their family’s rare 1929 Alfa Romeo 6C 1750 SS in the famous Italian classic car rally, Mille Miglia (Thousand Miles).
Dating back to 1927, the three-day regularity race passes through 230 picturesque Italian locations, including Rimini, Siena, Florence, Bologna and Parma, showcasing some of the nation’s most beautiful roads.
Running from May 16 to 19, this year’s race will feature 450 classic cars from around the world, including the Lawson family’s beloved Alfa Romeo.
The vintage car was discovered by John Lawson in 1979 in an old barn situated around 30 kilometres north of Calabria.
The original chassis and engine were buried under 10 tonnes of rusted farm equipment and went untouched for more than four decades.
Mr Lawson bought the car and lovingly restored it back to its former glory over a 30-year period.
Now as good as new, the Alfa 6C is valued at more than $2 million.
Mr Lawson – who competed in the 1989 Mille Miglia – has passed his passion for classic cars onto his sons, Andrew and Paul, who will drive their father’s 6C in this year’s race.
Between them, the brothers own a 1938 Alfa Romeo 2300B Mille Miglia Spider and a 1936 Delage D6 70 Le Mans, and have competed in more than 20 multi-day road rallies all over the world, from Australia and Asia to Europe and North America.
Paul entered his father’s 6C in the 2016 Mille Miglia and was set to race it alongside fellow car enthusiast Graeme Sedgwick, but they never made the start line.
The car’s cylinder cracked after a drive around Lake Garda on the day of registration, and wasn’t able to be repaired in time for the race.
Though he didn’t get to race his father’s car, Paul was given the chance to drive Alfa Romeo’s latest sports car, the 2016 4C Spider, around the course.
Who knows, that practice run may just make all the difference when it comes to this year’s rally.
A special farewell and photo shoot in honour of the Lawson brothers’ trip to Italy will take place in front of Tiamo on Lygon Street, on Saturday, May 5.
Four classic cars – two Delages, a Sunbeam and a Lancia B20 – will be on public display from 9:30 am to 11:15 am.