The first win of the season and the first double for Ferrari that took advantage of Max Verstappen’s retirement in the best of ways. It was a breath of fresh air for Ferrari (and F1) that said goodbye to Melbourne with a number of positive signs dictated by a competitive car which in the end also set the fastest lap with Leclerc.

The first sign of fragility in the Red Bull came a few laps after the start, even if the problems of Verstappen’s car emerged right from the first bends, probably due to an imperfect assembly. This “fall” does not cancel the excellent start of the RB 20 and the Dutchman who remains the point of reference, but the 56” gap from the leader Sainz suffered by Sergio Perez could represent a further alarming sign.

We saw a tight grand prix for all 58 laps with a nice sequence of laps by the Ferrari and McLaren drivers. Norris made his best performance in the 50th lap, then definitively bettered by Leclerc in the 57th.

Reliability problems also for Mercedes with the retirement of both drivers. I believe the exit from the track in the end was the result of a technical problem because the rear the “bucked” on him.

And taking advantage of the situation were the two Haas which took the points zone with Nico Hulkenberg (9th) and Keving Magnussen (P10). It was an excellent race also by Fernando Alonso ahead of his teammate Stroll. First points for Tsunoda with the RB (8th).

It was also a positive weekend for our young men involved in F2 and F3. Andrea Kimi Antonelli taking fourth place brilliantly making up for Saturday’s mistake. I believe the team still has a good margin for improvement because they were struggling in the straight despite the DRS. Second and third place for Formaroli and Mini respectively. Certainly, a good sign for the future.

Gian Carlo Minardi

[UPDATE] With the 20″ penalty imposed on Fernando Alonso, considered responsible for triggering George Russell’s accident on the last lap, the Spaniard slips to 8th place with Tsunoda 7th and Stroll in 6th



We are now close to the first grand prix of the season. It begins in Bahrain with a new programme (just like Abu Dhabi): the engines will start up on Thursday with two sessions of free practice, Friday free practice 3 and qualifying, Saturday 4.00pm the grand prix. This is already the first innovation.

We come to the first round (of 24 GPs) after having seen the three days of collective tests. Three days from which it was hard to draw a conclusion. It starts again from where we left off: A Red Bull in front of everybody. Adrian Newey has taken a different road from the rest of the pack and if everything goes as it should once again there is little all the others can do, also because he has introduced innovations which will be hard to duplicate in short time.

I was particularly impressed by the long runs covered by Max Verstappen on the Friday. He put together many laps at the same pace with extreme serenity and naturalness.

Carlos Sainz had also achieved the same result with the SF-24 the day before (even if the lap times were different), but it is not easy to make comparisons. Ferrari seems to have been born better compared to the previous car.

Another factor that emerged following the tests was the upward reduction of the performances, as well as reliability. Precisely for this reason I expect a very hard-fought Q2.  The cars normally have the same tyres and fuel. Just last year, especially at the end of the season, we had a fine tussle.

At the moment, I find it hard to evaluate the Mercedes. Russell set his best times with compounds that will not be present this weekend, as did Leclerc.

It will be interesting to follow this first round to start to understand the forces on the field and who will be the most skilled in these months, The RD drew attention with Tsunoda and Ricciardo…

But be careful! Eyes are also on Formula 3 with Fomaroli and Mini and the debut of Andrea Kimi Antonelli in Formula 2.

So, we expect a weekend full of Motorsport. Good viewing to everyone.

Gian Carlo Minardi

Ph @F1


If, on the one hand, we have a Red Bull that is absolutely beyond the limits of which we will (probably) never know (as shown by the fastest lap set in Budapest), there are great variations behind Max Verstappen.

The Dutchman is certainly making the difference. Without him we would be watching a championship with five/six different winners. For this reason, in view of Spa-Francorchamps the real question is: Which will be the second force?

Since the first grands prix we have seen radical changes from second to sixth place, due to the management of the tyres, weather conditions and, obviously, the developments of the car. It is not an easy to predict the name of the second place, above all in view of a long and demanding circuit such as Spa.

Today we have McLaren as the second force. At the start of the season, it was Aston Martin, then overtaken by Mercedes, with the introduction of the B version. Who is missing from the roll call is Ferrari. Let us see if they will be able to patch things up. They are passing through a moment of discomfort, as we can see from the strained faces. It will not be easy to recover.

Among the things we are seeing is an exciting competitiveness in qualifying, with the drivers enclosed within a handful of tenths of a second. A situation that changes drastically in the race.

It will be interesting to follow Sergio Perez as well, after his third place in Budapest. The Red Bull driver came from the last five unexciting rounds.

To try and avoid the rain, this year the round in Belgium has been brought forward, even if the forecasts talk about temperatures of 17-19°C with the possibility of showers. All this reminds me of an anecdote:

On 2 June 1985 the Belgian Grand Prix should have been run precisely in Spa-Francorchamps (it was the first year in the world championship for us), but the race was suspended because the asphalt crumbled as the cars passed, making it all very dangerous. A situation created by both the high heat and the newly laid street surface. The GP was later recovered with Piero Martini finishing in twelfth place with the M185.

It will be interesting to see what will happen on Sunday, and also Saturday afternoon with the sprint race on such a long (the longest of the championship) and demanding track.

Gian Carlo Minardi


Gabriele Minì’s win in the Formula 3 feature race (with pole position and fastest lap) and Leonardo Fornaroli’s second place in the sprint race are the most beautiful image for Italy in this weekend in the Principality of Monte Carlo. These two boys can make us hope for a brighter future, and to them must also naturally be added Andrea Kimi Antonelli who is currently a protagonist in Formula Regional.

On the Formula 1 front, Max Verstappen showed all his talent in Monte Carlo, outclassing Sergio Perez, protagonist of a rookie’s mistake in qualifying. Precisely in qualifying Verstappen made himself the protagonist of an extraordinary lap in which he snatched away pole position from Fernando Alonso. In turn, the Spanish driver demolished Lance Stroll.

One more Monte Carlo exalted the champions. Luckily the rain came to save us from a pedestrian race, giving us some excitement, as well as making the boys take out their “grip”. Nando took home his fifth podium in six races. Too bad about the team’s mistake mounting the dries despite the driver’s indications to use the wets. This probably would not have changed the result but we would have witnessed a tussle with the Dutchman, also in virtue of the minor close encounters with the guard rail.

It was also an excellent performance in both qualifying and the race by Esteban Ocon and Alpine closed the weekend with third and seventh place to its credit. As promised, Mercedes came to the track with many innovations, “giving itself” fourth and fifth place, as well as the best lap with Lewis Hamilton.

In the Spanish Grand Prix in Barcelona we will be able to analyse better these innovations because in Monte Carlo the drivers make the main difference.

It was a pity for Yuki Tsunoda. After his wonderful gesture in Faenza (helping the population to shovel away the mud), he would have deserved the satisfaction of reaching the points zone. Unfortunately, he was betrayed by a brake problem strongly caused by the streets of Monte Carlo. As we would have expected, with the arrival of Europe   and better-known tracks, even the rookies put themselves on show in both qualifying and the race. Oscar Piastri took his first point thanks to tenth place behind teammate Norris, while De Vries finished in twelfth place. Only Sergent was not able to confirm Saturday’s good work.

Now for Ferrari. They came to the track with some modifications, postponing the important package to the weekend in Spain. This time even qualifying was not exciting and a series of mistakes was made by the team and by the drivers which requires an in-depth analysis, as well excessive wear of the tyres. As we know, major technical changes will be introduced in Barcelona: in the hope that it will contribute to a Major step forward because sixth and seventh place is really too little.

Gian Carlo Minardi



If, on the one hand the Azerbaijan GP gave us the usual unstoppable Red Bull which set the third double of the season (in the first four rounds), on the other hand Ferrari set its seal on the double pole position and on the two podiums with Charles Leclerc interrupting the positive streak of Fernando Alonso and Aston Martin (always on the podium since the start of the season).

I was left positively impressed by the two times set by Leclerc in the final part of the GP with the fuel tank full and hard tyres. The driver from Monte Carlo lapped in the same times as Verstappen and Perez staying in the tussle for the fastest lap, together with Nando (which then went to George Russell after the pit-stop). It was exciting. A positive sign, above all connected to the wear of the tyres, one of the SF-23’s Achille’s heels,” commented the President of Formula Imola, Gian Carlo Minardi.

Leclerc crossed the finish line little more than 21 seconds from the winner Perez, paying a gap of 44 tenths of a second per lap. “A major step forward compared to the 7-8 tenths of a second at the start of the season. Ferrari managed to make the most of the month without races to make its car grow, also because now demanding tour-de-force awaits them with 5 GPs in six weeks”.

After Miami the world championship will come to Imola’s Enzo and Dino Ferrari Circuit for the Qatar Airways Gran Prix of the Made in Italy and Emilia-Romagna from May 19 to 21.At Imola I expect even smaller gaps. Ferrari and Aston Martin could start to interfere in Red Bull’s schedule. Amongst other things it will be the setting for a new form of qualifying: the drivers will face Q1 with the hard compound, Q2 with the medium and Q3 the soft. An unknown factor to keep us entertained and a major reason to support Ferrari. Charles Leclerc, Sergio Perez and all our favourites. I hope to see many fans also on the Friday and Saturday when there will also be support races”.

The President of Formula Imola called all the enthusiasts and fans together to experience the first European round with many new features, and an intense racing programme between Formula 1, Formula 2, Formula 3 e Porsche SupercupIf the teams have taken advantage of this month long gap to develop their racing cars, we have worked to make the Circuit as accessible and comfortable as possible. In order to satisfy the needs of the fans we have set up another six grandstands and other new developments will be announced soon. Furthermore, the weekend’s programme will be full of races, with many Italians already protagonists. Above all in Formula 3” Tickets are on sale on the Circuit’s website.



They want to make Formula 1 a show but in Melbourne they really hit rock bottom. From the yellow flag we went from the first (of three) read flag following Albon’s accident passing quickly through the virtual safety car and safety car. The peak was reached two laps from the end after Magnussen’s Hass went off the track when the race director Wittich had the red flag waved again choosing for a new restart from which came the third red flag for the collision between the two Alpines which eliminated each other.

In the lead Carlos Sainz caused Fernando Alonso’s spin taking third place. For this move the Spaniard will be penalized 5” despite the direction opting to start the race again, cancelling the previous restart. Alonso returned to the grid taking his position (third place with Sainz fourth) as did the others, except for Gasly and Ocon. The race restarted at the end of the two hours of the race with the last lap under the safety car.

It was really too much. There continue to be rules that are not clear and completely different interpretations from grand prix to grand prix. It is time to say enough and impose clarity. The race director was not free of mistakes, in my opinion distorting the order of arrival of the grand prix that has significance on world championship. The most damaged in this situation are certainly the two Alpine drivers who could appeal.
Ferrari could also appeal Sainz’s penalty., instead I saw Vasseur resigned. The Spaniard made a mistake in the in the collision with Alonso but the penalty was senseless because the subsequent restart did not take into account the new order.

Every decision is justified under the word “safety” but today, with these decisions, the drivers were once again put in even more danger. They could have easily used the SC and the VSC as always, without making all these pantomimes. The same experts have groped around in the dark giving personal interpretations.

The race direction was the real protagonist of this grand prix, stealing the stage from the drivers. Clear decisions with non-subjective decisions are needed.

Coming to the race, we witnessed good overtaking. Verstappen and Red Bull’s supremacy is impressive, even of we did not discover this today.

A step forward by Mercedes, even if the problem on Russell’s car is certainly an alarm bell on reliability, also because they are substituting a lot of components on the client cars. They are bringing forward intense work to go to Baku and Imola with many new developments. They have certainly not given up.

There were small step forwards by Ferrari. It was a good race by Carlos Sainz, even if lap times were distant, not only from red Bull but also Aston Martin paying a gap of 3 tenths of a second between the fastest lap and Fernando Alonso’s time. This weekend there were also mistakes in qualifying and starting in certain positions on this type of track is extremely risky as Leclerc’s retirement showed.

The third consecutive podium for Fernando Alonso which consolidates his third place on the ladder but above all for Aston Martin as the second force behind Red Bull.

Gian Carlo Minardi


Even if there was no need for confirmation Mercedes and Lewis Hamilton gave a new demonstration of their supremacy by winning the Spanish grand prix ahead of a just as excellent Max Verstappen who with the Red Bull tried everything to try and overturn a difficult situation.

Just like in Portugal we again witnessed an excellent duel, this time in three between Verstappen, Bottas and Perez, for the point for the fastest lap. This time the Dutchman did not miss the appointment leaving his team mate more than a second behind.

It was a GP that again saw Bottas lose the challenge with his team mate, paying a major gap, even if the number two driver brought home his “homework” of taking points away from his direct rival Sergio Perez. At the moment he cannot do more than this.

It was a masterpiece race by Leclerc who was the protagonist of a stupendous start in which he got the best of the Finn crossing the finish line in fourth place with a Ferrari that is growing but still pays about eight tenths per lap compared to the Mercedes. The driver from Monaco puts much of his own into it as the gap with his team mate showed.

The careless mistake made by Alfa Romeo during Giovinazzi’s pit-stop was incredible. It was a mistake that is rarely committed in lower categories. In this circumstance the mistake was made in both the preparation and the check of the set. In addition, not even the second set was ready. It was a festival of mistakes and always at Antonio’s expense. It was sad because his rhythm was superior to Kimi’s and he could have put himself into the fight for tenth place.

We file away a good weekend that, in addition to the excellent challenge between Hamilton and Verstappen, gave us very hard fought qualifying sessions, especially in Q2 with 14 drivers enclosed within barely 1”.

I look forward to Monte Carlo where I expect many drivers enclosed with the space of a few tenths of seconds. We all know how important qualifying is amongst the streets of the Principality.

Gian Carlo Minardi


F1 | A race calendar of 25 Grands Prix. MINARDI “A significant increase in costs”

As we know, next March 15th the new Formula 1 season will start in Melbourne, the longest in history with 22 rounds (China GP allowing) on the calendar with the curtain falling on November 29th.

Liberty Media’s desire would be to further expand the race calendar up to 25 Grands Prix and. in a recent interview. FIA President Jean Todt said he was favoured this type of operation, highlighting that those who work in Formula 1 are privileged.

“This is a problem of the blanket that is too short,” commented Gian Carlo Minardi interviewed by www.minardi.it,

“In the light of the reduction of the costs with the inclusion of the budget cap it is insane to want to increase the numbers of GPs, but, on the other hand, the Circus no longer knows where it can find new money. Today the teams move from 70 to 80 people for each trip and, compared to next season with 21 rounds, there will be no reorganization which instead will be necessary for any passage to seasons with 25 GPs. In this case the teams will certainly be called to increase the personnel in order to ensure proper turnover,” commented the manager from Faenza who concluded,

“The personnel has the right to holidays and to rest days and this is not subject to be underestimated, as it would surely entail a increase in costs”

F1 | MINARDI “Hamilton? The best today”

At Suzuka Mercedes put its hands on its sixth consecutive constructors’’ title, equalling Ferrari’s record, but in Mexico City Lewis Hamilton could once again wear the champion’s crown and so take another step towards Michael Schumacher’s record.

The numbers talk for Lewis Hamilton. In Mexico he will be able to celebrate his sixth world title. This year too he left nothing to chance, even if he did make some mistakes, as did the team,” commented Gian Carlo Minardi on Pit Talk’s microphones.

He certainly has the best car. In Suzuka he also proved his technical worth, as he showed with his times.

In the 46th lap he broke all the records with 1.30.9, while in the 49th lap, despite the new tyres, Leclerc did not go under 1.31.611. We’re talking of a difference of 6-7 tenths of a second.

Today, Hamilton for me is the best of the lot. In the moments that count he always made the difference, just as Mercedes is the car to beat. They have been flying towards 2020 for some time and they know this well in Maranello. This year they equalled Ferrari’s record and the people in Brackley want to break it

Gian Carlo Minardi highlighted how tight the duel between Mercedes and Ferrari is in this final part of the season. “They have to be absolutely perfect in order to beat them as happened in Spa, Monza and Singapore. In Japan we had a Ferrari with two faces. In qualifying it was perfect, putting together an unexpected 1-2 with perfect laps by Vettel and Leclerc. In the race on the other hand, it was all wiped out with a wrong start by Vettel and a mistake at the first bend of a 53 lap GP by Charles.

“In the race the German held off an unrestrained Hamilton. Could he have done more with a better start? We can’t know, even if it would have been difficult. Ferrari has made significant progress but there are still dark holes,” concluded the manager from Faenza.

13.10.2019- Podium, 2nd place Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF90

Antonelli Dominates Le Mans (OKJ) in the fourth round of the European FIA Karting Championship. Next Objective: World Championship in Finland.

A new win this weekend for Andrea Kimi Antonelli, the young kart driver from Bologna in the team Rosberg Racing Academy, with Kart Republic material supplied directly by Mercedes and with the supervision of Giovanni Minardi of Minardi Management.

On the Le Mans circuit named after four times world champion Alain Prost that was conditioned by the rain and bad weather, Antonelli dominated the fourth round of the European FIA Karting Championship by winning the OKJ Final after starting from second place on the grid and crossing the finish line with a lead of 317 thousandths of a second over Spina.

Andrea Kimi Antonelli confirmed that he is a protagonist on the international karting scene with his first win in the European OKJ and setting the best lap in Qualifying-Practice with a time of 52.930 (fourth best time in absolute 47 thousandths of a second from pole position).

Placed in Group D Antonelli finished on the podium in all the HEATS with a win, three second places and a third place that gave him second place overall behind Stenshome from Norway in a field made up of 79 drivers.(34 qualified for the Final).

With his win in the Final Andrea Kimi Antonelli ended his first European championship in OKJ in second place and with the title of vice champion with a total of 63 points and the best placed of the Italian drivers.

“I’m very happy with this win. I waited for it and it finally came. It was an excellent weekend in which I enjoyed myself. The Final was not easy. In the first laps Stenshome defended very well and after I managed to overtake him I dictated the rhythm despite a very slippery track. Second place in the championship is a very important result even if there is still the regret for the points lost in the beginning. We are now thinking about the world championship in Finland,” commented a satisfied Andrea Kimi Antonelli.

“I am very happy that the first win in the CIK FIA European Championship finally came. This was a deserved win, even if it does not wipe out the regret of a difficult start. This title was also easily within his reach. We will now start working for the next objective, the world championship in Finland,” commented manager Giovanni Minardi.

After the summer break Andrea Kimi Antonelli will fly to Finland and the Alahärmä track for the FIA Karting World Championship scheduled for September 6-8.

Foto: Sportinphoto Kart Photo-Agency

Lamborghini Super Trofeo Middle East | Positive debut for Karol Basz in Abu Dhabi

Karol Basz won his personal challenge on the Abu Dhabi circuit. After having been called by the FFF Racing Team a few days before the second round of the Lamborghini Super Trofeo Middle East together with Andrea Amici, the Polish driver put himself on show at the wheel of the Lambo Huracan ST Evo by marking his debut on the demanding Yas Marina circuit without making any mistakes and inaugurating the season with a podium finish.

In the three races Karol Basz took a third and two second places after having finished qualifying with the second fastest time.

“It was a great experience on a circuit I did not know and with a new team mate. Our speed was good, even though we had some problems but it was a positive weekend in the light of the new season,” commented Karol Basz.

“As always Karol behaved very well for all the weekend, considering that it was his first appearance in Abu Dhabi. Unfortunately we had some technical problem with the car and we could not do more than this. Now we will continue working on defining the 2019 programme,” said Giovanni Minardi, Karol’s Manager, as well as Sporting Director and Team Manager of the FFF Racing Team.

Lamborghini Super Trofeo Middle East | Karol Basz in Abu Dhabi with the FFF Racing Team

Karol Basz’s new season begins this weekend in Abu Dhabi. The Polish driver arrived at the spectacular Yas Marina circuit where he will find a Lamborghini Huracán ST Evo of the FFF Racing Team and team mate Andrea Amici for his debut in the Trofeo Middle East that for the third season opens the single make championship of the cars from Sant’Agata Bolognese that has reached its eleventh edition.

The weekend will be structured on a programme of three races and it will be Karol’s first experience on the track designed by the architect Hermann Tilke that since 2009 has been part of the Formula 1 calendar.

After his positive results last season in the Super Trofeo Europa and the Italian GT Championship aboard the Lamborghini GT3 Karol is getting ready to confront a new year with the house from Sant’Agata Bolognese.

I am very happy to have Karol here with me. It is an important opportunity to get to know a new international circuit like Yas Marina in an important setting such as the Middle East as we wait to define the 2019 that will certainly see him at the wheel of a Lambo. After the excellent debut in two rounds of GT3 at Monza and Mugello last season I am working with Karol in this direction,” commented manager and Sporting Director and Manager of FFF Racing Giovanni Minardi.

Karol Basz at Vallelunga between Super Trofeo Europa and World Final

The Vallelunga circuit named after Piero Taruffi will be the setting for both the sixth and final round of the Lamborghini Super Trofeo Europa and the sixth edition of the World Final dedicated to the cars of the maker from Sant’Agata Bolognese involving all the protagonists of the three series Europe, Asia and North America.

After the positive experience in the Italian Gran Turismo Championship aboard the Lamborghini Huracan GT3 the Polish driver followed by Minardi Management will return to the wheel of the blue Imperiale Racing “Lambo” number 44 together with Vito Postiglione to defend the leadership and to play for the title strengthened by the ten point lead over their direct rivals.

The spotlights will turn onto the final round on Thursday with free practice and qualifying, while on Friday there will be two races at 11.40am and 3.40pm.

On Saturday the curtain will rise on the World Final’s intensive programme with the warm-up, official trials and race-1. Race-2 is scheduled for Sunday at 2.25pm. There will be direct streaming on the Lamborghini Squadra Corse Facebook page.

It’s time for the culmination of year-round struggles. We are leading in the standings, so the situation is very good for us, but we must remember that our rivals will definitely not go easy on us. Two-day tests before the finals mean that not only we know the track very well, but the other teams also. For this reason, I expect a hard fight from the first outing on the track. Together with Vito, we will definitely give our best and I hope that it will be enough to stay on top. Keep fingers crossed” commented Karol

As always we will go to the track with our minds on the aim of winning the Super Trofeo Europa and to then have a say in the World Final, an appointment that embraces the best teams from the three series and to finish as well as possible a season that has been positive up till now,” commented managers Giovanni Minardi and Alberto Tonti.