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Length:4.933 Km

Nb of Laps:62 (305.609 Km)

Best Lap:
R. Barrichello - 1'24''170
(2002, Ferrari)

Record Pole:
M. Schumacher - 1'21''091
(2002, Ferrari)

2002 Pole:
M. Schumacher - 1'21''091

2002 Podium:
M. Schumacher - R. Barrichello - R. Schumacher

Via IV Giugno 99 Serravalle
47031 Saint Marin - San Marino
Tel : 00378 000 757
Fax : 00378 000 284
The first San Marino Grand Prix was held at Imola in 1979, a week after the Italian Grand Prix. It was a non-championship event, as Formula One used to adhere to the rule that there was only one race per country, with only the odd exception.

The track was built in the 1950’s and it was originally 3.1 miles in length. It rarely hosted any major events, and as with a lot of the other new circuits appearing in F1, it had to be reconstructed to suit.

Niki Lauder won the first championship race that was held in 1980, when after some political manoeuvring, it saw the Italian Grand Prix held here, instead of Monza. From that year forward, to solve the political unrest, Italy has hosted two GP events. The track is immensely popular with the drivers, set in wooded countryside, featuring wonderful up and down sweeps.

Imola has seen its fair share of dramas, starting back in 1982, when a feud started between Didier Pironi, and Giles Villeneuve, to 1987 and Nelson Piquet’s massive accident during qualifying. Sad to say, the one event that Imola will always be remembered for was the tragic death of the late, great Ayrton Senna in 1994.

Michael Schumacher won the 2000 event, even though McLaren driver, Mika Hakkinen took pole position. The Finn didn't finish far behind the German, claiming second place while teammate David Coulthard took third. In 2001 the Scotsman claimed pole, but the win went to Ralf Schumacher, his first ever career victory, but brother Michael was back on the top step of the podium in 2002.
2002 : M. Schumacher (Ferrari)
2001 : R. Schumacher (Williams)
2000 : M. Schumacher (Ferrari)
1999 : M. Schumacher (Ferrari)
1998 : D. Coulthard (Mclaren)
1997 : H-H. Frentzen (Williams)
1996 : D. Hill (Williams)
1995 : D. Hill (Williams)
1994 : M. Schumacher (Benetton)
1993 : A. Prost (Williams)
1992 : N. Mansell (Williams)
1991 : A. Senna (McLaren)
1990 : R. Patrese (Williams)
1989 : A. Senna (McLaren)
1988 : A. Senna (McLaren)
A lap of Imola with Jarno Trulli :
Approaching the first corner I will be travelling at around 300km/h in top gear and, depending on the wind, this will generally be the fastest part of the circuit. It is very heavy braking into the first chicane and the initial left hand part of it is taken in second gear at just over 120km/h. The right-hand part of the chicane opens out and although I cannot go to full throttle, I do accelerate through it, changing into third gear and taking the second apex at around 170km/h.

Straight out of the chicane there is a long left hand curve, which is not quite taken flat, so I have to balance the car on the throttle here, apexing in fourth gear at around 235km/h. I reach 285km/h in top gear before braking for the Villeneuve chicane. The first part of this I take in fourth gear at around 205km/h and then, unusually for a chicane, brake again in the middle and drop down to third gear and 150km/h for the right-hander.

A very short sprint then leads into the hairpin at Tosa, which is very tight and taken in second gear at just over 90km/h. I need good traction out of this corner as I accelerate up the hill, reaching about 275km/h in fifth gear before entering Piratella, which is a fast swooping corner taken in fourth gear at nearly 180km/h.

From here I plunge down the hill reaching 275km/h in fifth before entering Acque Minerale, which is essentially a two-part corner. The first part is taken at around 220km in fourth before braking once again, dropping down to second for the tighter part of it, taken at around 115km/h.

Again, I have to accelerate uphill towards the Variante Alta, reaching around 275km/h in fifth before once again dropping down to second gear before taking the chicane at about 150km/h for the right hand part and 125km/h for the left hand part. From here I drop down the hill towards Rivazza at just over 290km/h in top gear, braking very hard on the downhill section and dropping into second gear to take the first left-hander at just over 100km/h and the second one at 120km/h, still in second gear.

Leading up to the final chicane I will reach nearly 280km/h in fifth gear before again braking extremely hard for the final second gear chicane which is taken at between 95 and 100 km/h. A good exit from the chicane is on order to cross the line at maximum speed.