Bentley Celebrates Centenary with Mille Miglia Run

History was about to be made in 1930 when the legendary Bentley Blower was about to become the first British competing car in the Mille Miglia race. But despite their best efforts, they had to withdraw prior to the race, citing lack of preparation.

Now, after nine decades since the unfortunate incident, Bentley is returning to complete a feat that it could not achieve back then. The company is returning to complete the thousand-mile Italian test of endurance with two original 1930 4½-litre supercharged Blowers.

The Legendary Bentley Blower

Tim Birkin and then-CEO Woolf Barnato attempted to be the first British drivers to attempt the race in a supercharged ‘Bentley Blower’ also known as the No. 2 ‘Birkin Blower’. The media was disappointed after their withdrawal prior to the race.

A lot of struggle ensued between the driver and the owners of Bentley Motors to choose the perfect vehicle of this race. While W.O. Bentley wanted to increase the engine size, Sir Henry Birkin wanted to just add a new Supercharger to the existing 4-1/2 litre engine. To meet the criteria of the tournament, 50 Blower Bentleys were manufactured for the road.

However, the Bentley Blowers will be returning on track this year. They are:

  • The 4-1/2-litre ‘Birkin Blower’ UU5872
  • The 4-1/2-litre ‘Demonstrator’ GH6951

These legendary cars will be driven by Bentley’s Director of Motorsport, Brian Gush, and Head of Royal and VIP Relations, Robin Peel to achieve a feat that was left unfinished by the Bentley Boys almost 90 years ago.