Francesco Castellotti was a wealthy man, a lawyer who wished his son to take up the same profession, but from childhood Eugenio thought only of motor racing. Taught to drive by the family's chauffeur, he first raced in 1951, not long after his father's death.
This was not in some minor event, but the Giro di Sicilia, and Castellotti - just 20 - drove his own, black, Ferrari. From the outset he was overly brave: "After going off the road six times, I had to retire - I had no racing experience..."
Eugenio's second race was even more exalted, the Mille Miglia, and the following year he scored his first win, at Syracuse, then finished second in the Monaco Grand Prix, uniquely run in 1952 for sports cars.