Tuesday, 16 September 2008

F1 VICTORY FOR TEAM WITH MINARDI IN ITS GENES

Formula One's smallest team, Toro Rosso (formerly Minardi), picks up its first win at Italian Grand Prix.

Germany's Sebastian Vettel became Formula One's youngest ever race winner at the age of 21 on Sunday, with victory for tiny Toro Rosso at Monza. The team are co-owned by Red Bull energy drink billionaire Dietrich Mateschitz, and the Austrian F1 legend Gerhard Berger.

Fernando Alonso, who finished fourth in Monza, was quick to congratulate the Toro Rosso team on its first win. It was in the team's previous incarnation as Minardi where the Spaniard Alonso made his Grand Prix debut back in 2001.
Alonso commented: "I'm happy for him [Vettel] and also for Toro Rosso, because I raced with Minardi and I know everybody there and they deserve it. It's a perfect weekend."

The team was founded by Italian Giancarlo Minardi in 1985, and its history has been one of struggling against the odds. It became renowned for giving future successful drivers such as Alonso their first drive in F1. Jarno Trulli and Giancarlo Fisichella also started their careers there.
Before being bought by Red Bull in 2006, Minardi spent most of its time in F1 at the back of the grid and struggling for money. To get the inside story of how the little team took on the giants of F1, check out the Veloce book.

New! Forza Minardi! by Simon Vigar
- THE inside story!
- Exclusive interviews with Alonso, Ecclestone, Minardi, Stoddart, Martini, Nannini, Fisichella, Webber, and many more
- How Minardi became F1's best-loved survivor
- Why Ferrari was determined to kill Minardi
- Why Minardi failed to capitalise on success
- Minardi's skill as a talent-spotter

After 20 years of glorious 'failure', the best-loved team in Formula One is consigned to the history books, and it deserves one of its own. Minardi had a successful time in Formula Two until the tiny Italian outfit was ready to hit the big time in 1985. It somehow survived in F1's shark-infested waters as bigger teams (Lotus, Arrows, Tyrrell) were dragged under. They have a truly international fan-base and are the 'second team' of most F1 devotees. Minardi is held in such affection as everyone loves the plucky underdog – Minardi's annual budget would have lasted one month at the other Italian team up the road. Yet, from its plant in Faenza near Bologna, Minardi has produced cars that qualify, sometimes score points and often lead the way in their technology. Gian Carlo Minardi also developed a reputation as a fabulous talent-spotter – Fisichella, Trulli, Webber and the youngest ever World Champion Alonso all started their F1 careers with Minardi. For the last five years, Minardi was owned by controversial Australian tycoon Paul Stoddart. Cast as David against the Goliath of F1's governing body, Stoddart constantly hit the headlines as he tried to get a more equal share of the sport's billions. Ultimately, he failed and Red Bull has now bought the team. Despite a petition of 15,000 names the Minardi name has vanished from the F1 grid and true motorheads miss it. This is the one and only inside account, with exclusive, comprehensive interviews with bosses, drivers and engineers. 140 unique photos complete this revalationary tale.

click here for more info about the book