It is not a secret that Ferrari is known as the most successful manufacturer to ever race in Formula One. What a lot of people do not remember is that Ferrari had a very successful career in sports car prototype racing. Between 1940 and the early 1970s, Ferrari won 9 Le Mans wins and 13 World Sportscar Championships. Ferrari’s involvement in sports car prototype racing came to an end in 1974 when Ferrari Chairman, Enzo Ferrari, decided to focus the manufacturer’s attention on Formula One racing. Two decades would pass before the Prancing Horse would return to prototype racing with the release of the Ferrari 333 SP in 1994.
Designed by the famed Italian chassis manufacturer Dallara, at the request of amateur racer Giampero Moretti, the 333 SP was available for purchase until 2003, and holds the distinction of being the only Ferrari race vehicle to win the 24 Hours of Daytona and the 12 Hours of Sebring.
Everyone expects the current Ferrari flagship, the LaFerrari, to have a reign at the top of the Ferrari food chain for about a decade. Given the space between previous flagship projects such as the Enzo, this timeline makes the most sense. This hasn’t stopped designers from imaging what the next supercar to take over the world could possibly look like. Independent designer Adriano Raeli has envisioned a “street legal F1 car,” named the Ferrari F80. This is a futuristic design that embodies several very aggressive styling cues to include side mirrors attached to the roof and an insane front grill. Raeli’s design is powered by a twin-turbo V8 that delivers 900 horsepower matched to a 300 horsepower KERS system for a combined power output of 1,200 hp with a 0-60 mph time of just two seconds and a top speed of 310 mph.
The Ferrari 250 GTO is one of the most coveted examples of Ferrari’s golden era of racing, with only 39 examples ever made. It is extremely uncommon for one to come up for auction and when they do, they tend to fetch a large amount of cash.
During most of the 1980s, the 250 GTO was selling in the six figures. By 1989, a Ferrari 250 GTO sold at auction for $10 million with a second example selling a few months later for $13 million. By 2012, the price for a GTO at auction was around $35 million with even one example selling for an astonishing $52 million.
Bonhams auction house has gotten its hands on an extremely rare example that is rich in racing history; chassis number 3851 GT will be auctioned off at the Quail Lodge during Monterey weekend next month.
Chassis number 3851 GT is the 19th example of the Ferrari 250 GTO and was released for sale on September 11, 1962. The initial owner was a French racer named Jo Schlesser, who died in an experimental Honda F1 car six years later at the French Grand Prix. The Ferrari 250 GTO was later crashed at the Montlhery Autodrome and then repaired at the Maranello factory and returned to completion the following year. In 1965, Fabizio Violati became the owner and kept the 250 GTO is his collection until his death in 2010, making this the longest single-owner GTO in existence.
During an interview with racing journalist at the British Grand Prix this past weekend, the 2007 World Champion and winner of 20 grands prix, Kimi Raikkonen suggested that 2015 will be his last season racing for Ferrari or anyone else in Formula One. When asked how long he expects to stay in Formula One, Raikkonen answered: “Until my contract is finished, and then I will probably stop. That is what I think is going to happen.”
Raikkonen has been struggling this season with an underperforming car, ranked 12th in the standings, Raikkonen is currently ranked lower than he has finished any season while driving in Formula One. This poor performance has been compounded by the fact that longtime rival and current teammate, Fernando Alonso has managed to secure a 4th place ranking while struggling with the same underperforming equipment.
At 34 years of age, Kimi Raikkonen is the oldest active driver in Formula One. Raikkonen has 3 months of age on Jenson Button and a full year on former teammate Felipe Massa. Considering how many young faces currently make up the Formula One lineup, it’s only natural to start wondering just how long Raikkonen will continue to race.
Gene Haas has announced that he will field a new Formula One team for the 2016 season versus the much easier task of purchasing an existing team. Haas also announced that the team will be housed out of his NASCAR team’s headquarters in North Carolina. Gene Haas will be teaming up with Ferrari for this Formula One partnership, Ferrari remains the most successful race team in Formula One racing, with sixteen Constructors’ Championships, fifteen drivers’ titles and 221 grand prix victories. Ferrari won its last championship in 2008.
Last year, Edo Competition tasked Ferrari’s Tailor Made personalization program to create a one-off Ferrari 458 Italia that honored Formula One racing legend Niki Lauda. For some reason, Edo Competition has decided to sell this very unique vehicle less than 5 miles on the odometer! The custom 458 Italia comes with subtle accents inspired by the Formula One cars that Lauda drove while racing for Ferrari between 1974 and 1977. The white roof features an Italian flag, while the supercar sits on gold alloys along with white accents on the front splitter, side skirts and rear spoiler. On the inside, this special addition displays an Italian flag motif on the center console along with red stitching and carbon fiber trim. All of the special features on this limited edition one-off are purely cosmetic; the Niki Lauda Edition Ferrari 458 Italia packs the same naturally aspirated V8 engine found on the standard model. Edo Competition wants $385,000 for their limited edition Ferrari 458 Italia that pays tribute to Formula One legend Niki Lauda.
Michael Schumacher is no longer in a coma and has been transferred from the hospital in Grenoble, France, where he has been since his skiing accident last year to a recovery ward at the University Hospital in Lausanne, Switzerland.
“Michael has left…to continue his long phase of rehabilitation,” according to his manager Sabine Kehm.
As in previous statements, Schumacher’s agent asked for the media and fans to respect the privacy of Schumacher and his family as they continue forward with his recovery.
“The family also wishes to thank all the people who have sent Michael all the many good wishes,” Kehm said. “We are sure it helped him. For the future we ask for understanding that his further rehabilitation will take place away from the public eye.”
The seven-time Formula One world champion is an avid and experienced skier who suffered severe head trauma as a result of a skiing accident at the French Alps resort of Meribel on December 29. Investigators believe that Schumacher struck a rock that was hidden below the snow while traversing an area between two pistes, which catapulted him face first into another rock.
In early January, a French prosecutor tasked with investigating the accident concluded that speed was not a reason for Schumacher’s fall.
Ferrari president Luca di Montezemolo made a surprising declaration during an interview with an Australian journalist that Fernando Alonso is the “The best driver in the world.” Ferrari then issued a press release to praise Alonso and repeat the claim that Alonso is the best.
“Fernando is the best driver in the world, who always gives 200% in the races,” said Montezemolo.
“He knows how much I count on him, even away from the race track, in terms of his contribution and the impetus he gives to the team.
“I think it’s incredible that there are still some so-called experts who don’t understand that and are always looking for a polemical situation that simply doesn’t exist.
“The truth is that he and Kimi, another incredible driver, need a competitive Ferrari and giving them that is our sole objective.
“We are working very hard, starting with Marco Mattiacci, who knows what needs to be done and who will instigate many changes at a technical and organizational level and in speeding up the decision-making process.
“That’s what I want, as do our drivers and our fans, while all the rest is just idle chat.”
Ferrari Formula 1 racer, Fernando Alonso has expressed that the team’s new car has been underperforming in “many areas” for the first part of the 2014 season.
Things did not look good for Ferrari for the first three races of the 2014 season. Things began to look better for Ferrari during the Chinese Grand Prix where Fernando Alonso scored the first podium appearance for Ferrari in the 2014 season with a 3rd place finish in Shanghai. Even a podium finish was not enough to lift Alonso’s hopes that things have turned around in 2014.
“The car was under-performing in many areas – it was not just one problem,” Alonso explained after the race.
“We need to be more efficient, have better aerodynamics, better traction, better power. We lack some big performance in the first races.”
“[In China the improvement] was nothing really big in one area, just small steps here, small steps there – better power delivery, better software, putting everything in place, all the settings, and giving a little bit more aero efficiency and a little bit more power.”
“We have bigger margins, because we started in a lower performance, but we cannot dream too much because people will not be watching TV from here to Barcelona.”
“The other teams will bring a couple of tenths to Barcelona, [so] we need to bring a couple of tenths, plus something, if we want to catch up.”
“That’s the challenge we are facing now. It’s not that we need to develop the car at a normal rate; we need to do the normal developments, plus something.”
The 2014 Formula One race year is definitely shaping up to be a “Silly Season” due to all the driver changes taking place. It seems that 2014 may also be a “Silly Season” due to some very significant rule changes passed down by the FIA on 9 December 2013, after being approved by the Formula One Strategy Group and the Formula One Commission. Here is a recap of two of the more significant changes that are taking place.
Double Points for Last Race: The decision has been made to double the points value of the last race of the season creating a last race bonus opportunity for race teams fighting for the title. The hope is that by awarding a double points kicker in the last race that the championship will come down to the wire. The other races in the season will still be referred to as grands prix, with the season finale becoming a grand epreuve, a term used in early grand prix racing to denote those events with added championship weight. Concerns exist as to how this new rule will effect situations such as mechanical failure during the last race of the season. Under the new rules, mechanical failure during the last race of the season will be twice as damaging to the championship points as a mechanical failure that happens earlier in the season.
Introduction of Mandatory Cost Cap for 2015: This is without a doubt the single most important rule change to be made in quite some time. Race teams and the governing body of Formula One have six months to figure out just how the cap will be enforced, and what the spending limits will be for the first year and whether those spending limits will remain the same for future years going forward. We anticipate that race teams will be very passionate about expressing their concerns over how these cost restrictions should be implemented. Expect well-funded teams like Ferrari, Mercedes and Red Bull to be extremely expressive towards their concerns about leveling the playing field when it comes to money.
Ferrari has taken the unusual step of reaching out to the public thru social networking (Twitter) and asking the fans to name the 2014 Formula One car, with an online poll offering five different choices.
The options to choose from to name the 2014 Formula One car are F14 T, F14 Maranello, F14 Scuderia, F166 Turbo and lastly, F616. All these selections reflect either the year of 2014 or a reference to the 1.6-liter V6 engine that will be used for the 2014 Formula One racing season. Early voting results show the main front runners to be F166 Turbo and F14 T.
The car itself will be unveiled on January 25.
The Ferrari F14-T is the 60th car from Ferrari to participate in Formula 1. This new model will carry the same 1.6 liter, turbocharged V6 as the rest of the field. What separates the F14-T from the rest of the pack are the unique aspects of the new nose design. This new design is a direct result of Formula 1’s new regulations being made in the name of driver safety that require teams to lower both the nose and the chassis. These changes are being made with the intent to lower the point of impact on side collisions so that wrecks are less likely to impale drivers.
The individual teams interpretation of how to deal with revised height regulations has garnered distinctly different results when it comes to the nose cone. These nose designs range from elephant to phallic to wide-open. The teams will be paying close attention to how these uniquely different nose designs work under true racing conditions. It is possible that as the 2014 F1 season plays out teams may begin to adapt a universal nose piece that has proven to be the most effective.
Additional changes had to be made to the front suspension so that it would fit into the lower monocoque. The front wings on all cars must now be 3 inches smaller on each side creating a front wing surface that is now 6 inches more narrow than the previous model. Ferrari had to completely redesign the front wings in order to maintain and improve downforce over the front wheels.
Other exterior changes for the 2014 F1 season include a revised Drag Reduction System (DRS) that has required teams to completely redesign the rear wing of the car. Smaller calipers on the back were developed to compensate for increased braking along with a new “Brake-by-Wire” system that was added to assist drivers with changing brake dynamics during the race.
The 2014 Formula 1 racing season is quickly approaching, teams are getting ready to test the new turbocharged V-6 engines and drivers are looking to settle in. Kimi Raikkonen has started the first week of his second stint with Ferrari by spending some time with the engineers in the simulator. This is what he had told www.ferrari.com during a break in testing.
“It’s good to be back at work,” “I began by getting used to all the new systems and procedures that we will use this year. From this point of view, the simulator is really very useful. It’s true there’s lots to do, but the workload is not much different to what it was in the past. For me, these days in Maranello are also an opportunity to be with the team and spend a bit more time with my many friends here.”
Recently, Formula one driver Fernando Alonso was given an opportunity to take out the still camouflaged Ferrari LaFerrari for a test drive around the 1.86 mile test track with GT driver Andrea Bertolini as his passenger.
“I am always happy to spend a few days in Maranello. Apart from working on the car and being in close contact with the team,” said Alsonso. “Sometimes I’m able to see some of the production departments which are the heart of the company. This time I met up with people who are never in the limelight, but they have an incredible love for their work.”
A customer recently paid Ferrari to create a one-off special edition of the Ferrari 458 Italia that pays tribute to Ferrari’s Formula One racing legend and recent subject of the Hollywood blockbuster feature film Rush, Niki Lauda. This build was commissioned through Ferrari’s Tailor Made program and is released as a strict one-off.
The most notable changes to the exterior include the gold racing wheels on a red paint job with a white roof that has the Italian Flag represented in tri-color racing stripes across the roof. Inside, the seats and center console are finished with red stitching and make use of the same tri-color racing stripe creating and interior design that matches the exterior paint.
The changes made to the Ferrari 458 Italia for this custom build are purely cosmetic. Under the hood this Italia still carries the same 562 horsepower V8 engine that tops out at 202 mph with a 0-60 in 3.4 seconds. Other unique cars to come out of the Tailor Made program at Ferrari include a black and yellow two-toned California that uses a unique blend of carbon fiber and Kevlar for the exterior.
The Tailor Made program from Ferrari allows customers the option to customize color and trim options. For those that are interested in customized packages that go beyond color and trim should check out Ferrari’s One-Off program. The most recent example of this program is Eric Clapton’s super custom Ferrari SP12 EC, valued at over $2 million.
Robert Kubica has many distinctions, one being that he is the first Polish driver to ever compete in Formula 1, another is being the 99th driver to ever win a world championship race. It appears that Kubica will no longer have the distinction of being a driver in the Formula 1 racing series.
Robert Kubica’s trouble began in February 2011 while racing in the Ronde di Andora rally, a race that he had entered for fun. During the first stage of that race, Kubica suffered a serious injury resulting in a partial severing of his forearm as a result of a collusion with a crash barrier at a high rate of speed. He was flown by helicopter to Santa Corona Hospital in Pietra Ligure where it was confirmed that he had suffered a partial amputation of his forearm. Almost immediately after surgery Kubic swore that he would make a swift return to Formula 1. As reality set in, it became obvious that Kubic would miss the remainder of the 2011 season and the entire 2012 and 2013 seasons. Kubic did return to racing in September, 2012 winning a minor rally in Italy. This triumphant return to racing resulting in a victory won Kubic “The Man of the Year 2012” award from Top Gear magazine.
Unfortunately this level of bravery does not appear to be enough to secure a seat in the highly competitive world of Formula 1 racing. When asked during an interview on Scuderia Ferrari’s website whether Kubica would return to Formula 1; Scuderia Ferrari boss Stefano Domenicali replied “Yes, we are keeping an eye on him. Unfortunately, I don’t think he will be back, because with his physical problem, he would struggle in certain limited situations which require reactivity. It’s a shame.”
Good news is that Kubica will have a ride for the 2014 racing season driving for Citroen in the European and World Rally-2 Championships.
KIMI RAIKKONEN SIGNS WITH FERRARI THRU 2016
Ferrari Scuderia announced that Kimi Raikkonen will be rejoining Ferrari in 2014. Raikkonen won the 2007 Formula 1 World Championship driving for the Italian Marque. Kimi will be replacing Brazilian Felipe Massa who has underperformed his entire career with Ferrrari. Continue reading “Kimi Raikkonen to Drive for Ferrari in 2014, Signed Thru 2016” »
Everyone dreams of driving a Ferrari. Now, get behind the wheel of the Ferrari F430 F1 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway and Auto Club Speedway in California. Take on these challenging closed road courses while pushing the 490 hp V8 and “F1″ sequential-shift manual transmission. Continue reading “Ferrari F430 F1” »