The Bugatti Type 35 was the most successful of the early Bugatti racing models, winning over 1,000 races in its time. It took the Grand Prix World Championship in 1926 after winning 351 races and setting 47 records in the two prior years. At its height, Type 35s averaged 14 race wins per week. Bugatti organized the Targa Florio as a special spotlight for this car, and it claimed victory there for five consecutive years, from 1925 through 1929.
The Targa Florio was an open road endurance automobile race held in the mountains of Sicily near Palermo. Founded in 1906, it used to be the oldest sports car racing event, part of the World Championship until 1973. While also a whole tour (giro) of the island was used at times, the track length of the last decades was limited to the 72 kilometres (45 mi) of the Circuito Piccolo delle Madonie which was lapped 11 times.
After 1973, it was a national sports car event until it was discontinued in 1977 due to safety concerns.