Maranello, Modena and Fiorano Modense; but for a man called Enzo, they’d be just another little group of towns in the Italian region of Emilia-Romagna, gamely holding on in the world.
Instead they are a sea of red, with supercars being driven by tourists out of their comfort zone as they realise a lifelong dream for a few minutes between battered Fiat Puntos and identikit Lancias.
As a Williams fan in my youth, when Michael Schumacher was busy turning the Prancing Horse into the force it once was – and in the process turning many fans off Formula 1 – I never understood the team’s significance. I’d been blinded by my partisanship and the old double-sided poster of Nigel Mansell’s FW14B and Valvoline Indycar on my wall.
But an afternoon spent in and around Maranello has given me clarity. Ferrari is a unifying presence in a country, let alone a region, that wants something to hold on to, to celebrate and be a part of in victory – and to passionately defend and deny in defeat.
The Tifosi has new cause to go to the team’s hometown this month, with the opening of the Universo Ferrari exhibition, for 8000 lucky ticket holders across two weekends in September.
The pop-up museum is nothing fancy on the outside; a temporary building in the run-off area of the Fiorano race track, where legends were honed, perfected and then made, its Tarmac witness to more than most.