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Tazio Nuvolari, Alfa Romeo 12C-4000
Autosport Plus
Special feature

The history of motorsport's first ‘Greatest Of All Time’

When the modern day debate of the greatest of all time comes around, pre-Formula 1 stars are overlooked due to time and historical relevance. But, as one of the world’s pre-eminent motorsport historians recalls, a true legend can stake a claim to the title. Here’s the story of Tazio Nuvolari, who died 70 years ago this week

For any older-generation enthusiast, it’s pretty boring these days to see animated debate about what racing driver is the GOAT. That’s right, the so-called ‘Greatest Of All Time’. It’s particularly irksome when one sees a probably perfectly well-meaning fan, deeply immersed in internet racing history, loftily quoting irrefutable statistical evidence to support whatever case they might have to prove that Lewis Hamilton, Max Verstappen, Alain Prost, Niki Lauda is that very man – standing there on that unique point of the all-time pyramid.

In reality, of course such debate as a serious concern is effectively unprovable; modern sport is so different an activity from what it was even one generation ago, never mind more than a century and a quarter’s worth.

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