Gian Carlo Minardi, together with Formula Imola and the Bandini Trophy managed to condense into a single weekend more than half a century of sporting competitions through historic racing cars which brought to the track of Imola’s Enzo and Dino Ferrari Circuit an exceptional parade of champions.
In the course of the two days 9,000 enthusiasts flocked the circuit next to the Santerno River to experience as protagonists an International weekend of Motorsport inside the circuit’s pits, paddock and track to meet pilots, technicians and cars from Formula 1, Formula 2, Formula 3, Formula 3000, Gran Turismo and Prototypes which wrote the most emotional pages of the four wheeled sporting history.
There were a number of emotional moments which particularly marked the third edition of the Historic Minardi Day, beginning with the arrival of Mercedes – AMG Petronas Motorsport’s driver Valtteri Bottas for a session with autograph hunters and a walk along pit lane together with Gian Carlo Minardi and Selvatico Estense, the Circuit’s President before taking to the wheel of the World Championship winning Mercedes WO7 to go to the medieval hamlet of Brisighella to receive the Bandini Trophy which this year celebrated its 25th edition. Amongst the prize winners were also ACI President and also FIA Vice President Angelo Sticchi Damiani, Aldo Costa designer of the F1 world championship car and Lewis Hamilton’s track engineer Riccardo Musconi, as well as Nick Heidfeld from Formula E who put on a display with his Mahindra Racing car in the streets of the hamlet.
On the Sunday Aldo Costa excited the crowd by making his debut at the wheel of a Formula 1 car when he took to the track in the Mercedes W07, the first racing car designed by the engineer from Parma who grew up in the ranks of the Minardi Team. The incredible voyage between the past, present and future brought together by Gian Carlo Minardi for its third edition, and which also had the participation of Toro Rosso, ended with the Mahindra Team which is the protagonist of the Formula E World Championship. The day ended with an extraordinary caravan made up of the more than one hundred vintage cars from the 1st Savio Circuit Trophy and the Wheels of History event in the parade lap of the Circuit.
Many personalities made a stop in Faenza for the Golf challenge between VIPs and drivers which began the three days of the event, beginning with Prisca Taruffi, Gabriele Tarquini, Gianni Morbidelli, Pierluigi Martini, Alessandro Nannini, Luca Badoer, Riccardo Patrese, Miguel Angel Guerra, Gabriele Lancieri, Sergio Campana, Emanuele Pirro, Paolo Barilla, Matteo Bobbi, Alex Caffi, Carlo Facetti, Roberto Ravaglia, the young Kart drivers Andrea Kimi Antonelli and Nicholas Pujatti, as well as engineers Gabriele Tredozi, Aldo Costa and Mauro Forghieri who was also the leading player of the presentation of his book “Capire la Formula 1” (Understanding Formula 1. The secrets of the evolution of Formula One from the 1960s to the present day) at the “Ayrton Senna” Conference Room. Also presenting books were journalist Pino Allievi with his “VITE DI CORSA Incontri in pista con piloti, manager, astronauti, cantanti, gente strana” (“LIFE OF RACING, Meetings on the track with drivers, managers, astronauts, singers, strange people), Mario Donnini with his “Formula 1 dal 1950 ad oggi” (Formula 1 from 1950 to today) – “Senna & Imola una storia nella storia” (Senna and Imola, a story in history) – “Mario Andretti Immagini di una vita” (Mario Andretti. Images of a life), as well as a presentation by the Scuderia Tazio Nuvolari of the book “Giorgio Lucchini – una vita per le corse” (Giorgio Lucchini – a life for racing) and driver Siegfried Stohr who brought to life his show “Piloti d’altri tempi” (Drivers of times gone by).
The fans stormed the pits of Alfa Romeo, Lamborhgini and Dallara Stradala who gave enthusiasts a lap of the Imola track, as did the Coloni Motorsport with its two seater racing car. In this setting of inestimable Supercars there was also the caravan of Pagani cars led by founder Horacio Pagani.
Gian Carlo Minardi: “It was an incredible and emotional weekend. I must thank all the participants for the passion which every year they bring to the Historic Minardi Day unique and incredible pieces that give us indescribable emotions and also the enthusiasts for the warmth they show us. It is not every year that we can host at the same time Valtteri Bottas, Aldo Costa at the wheel of a Mercedes F1 car and Formula E. I conclude with a big thank you to all the staff and the ex-Minardi volunteers. All that remains is to get to work on the fourth edition”.
Pier Giovanni Ricci (Director of the Circuit): “The success of the third edition of the Historic Minardi Day confirms how much the Imola Circuit is the perfect stage when we speak of motorsport, great emotions and the unmistakable sound of Formula 1 cars. I wish to thank Gian Carlo Minardi and Francesco Asirelli, the patron of the Bandini Trophy, for having brought us a champion of the calibre of Valtteri Bottas, a passage between past and present which we always experience with great passion. With a look towards the future as was also testified by the presence of the Mahindra car from Formula E, the sector of sustainable mobility on which we are betting with great commitment and conviction. I close with a big thank you to all the Formula Imola staff, the medical service, the track marshals, the security and fire fighting services, who all contribute substantially to the success of the events in a particularly challenging time. We are now ready for the Superbikes”.