While Enzo Ferrari was outwardly cooperating with the German Army and the Fascists, he was secretly assisting both Partisan and Communist guerilla units and also carrying out covert assignments.One of these dangerous missions required him to smuggle a senior political official to safety, avoiding armed roadblocks and a probable firing squad if they had been discovered.Ferrari called this time “Judgment by Gunshot” after a colleague was machine-gunned in the street and, only weeks later, a business partner and close friend was kidnapped - and never seen again.Alarmed by these executions, Ferrari realised he could be next.These included Colombo, Chinetti, Pininfarina, Scaglietti and also Pat Hoare, a little-known New Zealand soldier serving in Italy.Hoare’s actions probably saved a key engineer’s life and helped shape the Ferrari company’s future.
You should have seen his eyes that devour you, but no!
The risks were huge as Ferrari’s factory workers operated undercover at night, manufacturing and repairing weapons for Italy’s Resistance fighters.
A handwritten letter had already arrived confirming disgruntled Fascists had named Ferrari as a target for assassination.
Later he was confronted by a messenger delivering an execution order from a political hit squad – or was it a gang of opportunistic mobsters at work?
Ferrari’s survival over those violent years allowed him to develop the business he created during the war into an automotive success - and to achieve global motorsport history.