Mother-in-Law’s Favorite

Translated by this website

Elio de Angelis has a German girlfriend and feels at home in the Palatines.

The cliché of the son of a millionaire fits perfectly: a very rich father, a wonderful name, Rome as the place of birth. In addition, he plays the piano at a concert level, studied law and economics, has manners like a gentleman and has been living in Monaco for five years. In short, Elio de Angelis is the dream son of every mother-in-law.

Inge Kittelberger, wife of a building contractor in Ludwigshafen, should know. She says what probably all mothers-in-law on earth would say about Elio de Angelis: “He’s a sweetheart!”

Said sweetheart smiles mildly and the future mother-in-law continues: “When there was a crisis between Ute and Elio a few months ago, I cried terribly.” But the happy ending was not long in coming: “Elio was back faster than he left.”

De Angelis grins, clears his throat, sips his champagne glass – and doesn’t deny it: “I like being in Ludwigshafen,” says the Roman. The well-travelled, spoiled, well-off contentedly embedded in a German family idyll?

It seems so. De Angelis smiles faintly and remarks in a low voice, “I feel at home here. Italy doesn’t mean much to me anymore. Too much crime, too much chaos – I see no future for that.”

In Ludwigshafen he’s enjoying himself. “Elio is part of the family,” explains Fritz Kittelberger, Ute’s father. “He feels so at home here that he sometimes gets up at one in the morning and cooks spaghetti.”

How much de Angelis feels at home in the Palatinate is also documented by his private car. The white Porsche 944 is registered in Ludwigshafen. “At the Kittelbergers I am treated like a normal person,” says the Roman happily, “in Italy, on the other hand, I am still accused of having one origin – a rich son – and nothing else!”

A topic that gets the Lotus driver serious: “The success I’ve achieved in motorsport is secondary for the Italians. It always means that my father helped me at the beginning of my career. Nobody cares for what I did after that.”

Nevertheless, he still has friends in Rome. And of course, in Ludwigshafen. There he celebrates the festivals as they come – and maltreats the piano in the Kittelbergers’ basement.

He can certainly imagine a future second career as a musician. However, its start will depend on his racing success. “In six Formula 1 years I’ve become more mature and relaxed,” says de Angelis, “I have the business pretty much under control and reckon I have serious chances of winning the world championship.”

The reason? “Lotus is a winning team again today – and we will be successful together.” He doesn’t fear his new teammate Ayrton Senna: “Being fast isn’t everything.”

Then de Angelis describes the subject; from which, in his opinion, the masters of tomorrow are made: “One must be quick, calm, composed, intelligent, motivated rather than ambitious. Of course, you also need luck,” he adds, gently hugging the girl at his side.

For more than three years, Ute Kittelberger – professional model – has accompanied her Elio to the races. She comments with a thoughtful expression: “I like being there. But I’d rather travel around the world with him without constantly visiting racetracks.” De Angelis responded, quite gentlemanly: “I would see it the same way if I were you”.

© 1985 Auto Zeitung • By Burkhard Nuppeney • Published for entertainment and educational purposes, no copyright infringement is intended

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