Tuesday, June 20, 2023

RETRO: Minardi F1 Team

Who were always a Fan Favourite as a loveable Underdog Formula 1 Constructor!


This “Retrospective” of one of the Greatest Minnowesqe Formula 1 Teams of the past was originally begun Wayback in Bloody 2020, during a lull in Motor Racing due to COVID-19. But like many things Here in Nofendersville, it never got published! Being waylaid High upon Ye Driftwood…



Full Name: Minardi F1 Team

Team Founder: Giancarlo Minardi

Noted Technical Staff: Gustav Brunner

Base: Faenza, Italy

Constructors Titles: 0

Drivers Titles: 0

First Race: Brazilian Grand Prix, 1985

Last Race: Chinese Grand Prix, 2005

Races: 346 Entries (340 Starts)

Wins: 0

Poles: 0


If you're a Hard Core F1 Aficionado like Mwah, then you know that today’s AlphaTauri and it's subsequent incarnations as a Formula 1 Constructor began as Minardi Wayback in 1985, when Giancarlo Minardi's Minnowesqe Formula 1 Team made it's F1 Debut at Sao Paolo, Brazil.


the team's list of Driver Alumni include one future Formula 1 Double World Champion named Fredrico Suave, aka Fernando Alonso who began his Formula One career in 2001 at Minardi., in what I've always thought was one of the team's best looking chassis, i.e.; the Minardi PS01.


As the PS Chassis suffix stood for Paul Stoddart, after the Australian Businessman purchased the beleaguered F1 team from Messer Minardi in 2001, before selling it to the late “Deeter Majestic” and his Red bull concern in 2005.


Other F1 Drivers to score Grands Prix victories include four future winners: Jarno Trulli, Giancarlo Fisichella, Alessandro Nannini and Mark Webber. Plus one former Grands Prix victor, Michele Alboreto who joined the team during his F1 Swansong.


Four former Minardi Drivers became winners in America's Open Wheel Racing series. The first being Christian Fittipaldi who won for the storied Newman/Haas racing team in CART (Championship auto Racing Teams) in 1999 at Road America. With then Chief Steward Wally Dallenbach having to Eat his Hat as part of a Bet!


While Justin B-I-G UNIT' Wilson, who subsequently became my Numero Uno IndyCar Driver during his prowess at RuSport Wayback in '05 - Before his unfortunate Demise, scored wins in both the Champ Car World Series (CCWS) and the mergified Indy Racing League, (IRL) now simply known as IndyCar. Scoring a total of seven wins before His untimely Death at Pocono in August, 2015.


Whilst Former Jordan, Minardi and Red Bull F1 recruit Robert Doornbos also drove for Minardi's Champ Car team known as Minardi Team USA during Chump Carz' series final season in '07, where he not only notched two Champ Car W's.


But is more fondly known here on Ye Isle 'O Nofendersville for giving le Hemburgular', later known here on No Fenders as Sealmeister B', aka Sebastien Bourdais who ruled the Roost in Champ Cars from 2004-2007  Great Agro', nee Aggravation! Which presumably heldped him earn the nickname Bad Bobby D!


Christian Fittipaldi and Justin Wilson have also won the prestigious Rolex 24, with Fittipaldi claiming three Rolex time-pieces for his multiple victories.


Michele Alboreto won the 24 Heurs du Mans outright for Porsche in 1997 with eventual Mr. Le Mans, aka tom Kristensen and ‘lil Stevie Johnson, nee Stefan Johansson. Driving the TWR Porsche WSC-95 for Joest Racing.


Before Michele’s untimely Death whilst testing an Audi R8 Prototype at the Fiendish Euro Speedway Lausitzring in the former East Germany. Site of another Mega ex-Minardi Driver's Horrendous Death Defying injury on September 15, 2001! With Alboreto’s Death coming just one month after having won the 12 Hours of Sebring for Audi.


And how could I not mention El Zorro', aka Alex Zanardi, whom everyone will know lost both of his legs at that aforementioned CART IndyCar race at Ye Lausitzring in '01.


While Alex has been recovering from a Horrific Handbiking Accident near Pisa nearly three years ago on  June 19, 2020. Before returning home in December, 2021.


As Zanardi's the  only Double (CART) IndyCar Champion who amassed 15 IndyCar wins after driving for Minardi. And obviously I hope for his full recovery from his latest traumatic accident!


Whilst lastly, Marc Gene who raced for Minardi in Formula 1 between 1999-2000, before becoming a Williams and Ferrari F1 Test Driver, won the prestigious 24 Heurs du Mans for Peugeot Sport Wayback’ in 2009.


As once upon a time, before Formula 1 began piling on more 'N more Grands Prix per season, with Liberty Media wishing to capitalize it's investment with a ridiculous plan for 25 Grands Prix per season, YOUSA! As Talk 'bout Diluting your product…


There was a time when a Formula 1 Driver making 200 Grands Prix starts was a Mega' accomplishment, for which four Minardi Alumni have done so, which I scribbled about in another No Fenders tome.




And Fernando Alonso, whose currently enjoying an F1 Renaissance currently driving for Aston Martin, having scored five podiums to start the season. Will claim His record 362nd  Grands Prix start at His Home race at Barcelona, the Spanish Grand Prix on June 4, 2023. With the soon to be 42yr old Spaniard in the first of His two year contract with Aston Martin, being set to potentially become the Sports first ever 400 Grands Prix starter, Aye Karumba!