Located 30 km east of Bologna, the Imola circuit was built in 1950. It first took the name of the river bordering it: Circuit de Santano then became, in the 1970s, the Circuit d ‘Imola. In 1970, it took the name of Autodromo Dino Ferrari. For the 1980 season, Formula 1 left Monza to come to Imola for the Italian GP. The route offers a fast straights, with superb sequences and corners. For 1981, F1 returned to Monza, but the circuit hosted the San Marino Grand Prix from then on. On the death of Enzo Ferrari, his first name was added to the name of the circuit. After the events of 1994, the circuit was modified and two chicanes were added, causing the circuit to lose its fast character. It no longer hosted F1 after 2006 but returned to the calendar as the Emilia-Romagna Grand Prix following the Covid-19 pandemic.
The Autodromo di Castellaccis was the original name of the track when it was first opened as a temporary location in 1953. The circuit remained in this configuration until 1972; it lacked chicanes, so the runs from Acque Minerali to Rivazza and from Rivazza all the way to Tosa were just straights with a few minor bends. The first motorcycle races happened in April 1953, while the first auto race happened in June 1954. The circuit held its first Formula One race in April 1963. It was a non-championship race, and Jim Clark of Lotus won it. In 1979, Imola hosted a further non-championship race that was won by Niki Lauda driving a Brabham-Alfa Romeo.
Michael Schumacher is the most successful driver to have ever driven at the historic Imola track in Formula One. The former Ferrari man racked up seven wins at the circuit in his career, more than any other driver in history. Ayrton Senna and Alain Prost are tied in second place with tree wins each. Nelson Piquet, Damon Hill, Max Verstappen and Nigel Mansell are in third with two wins each.
|Ayrton Senna, Alain Prost
|Nigel Mansell, Nelson Piquet, Damon Hill, Max Verstappen
Most pole positions
Ayrton Senna has been the fastest man in qualifying eight times at the Imola circuit, sitting at a comfortable P1. Michael Schumacher comes second with five pole positions at the track and Rene Arnoux, who was one of the first F1 drivers to take part here has three pole positions.
Most fastest laps
Michael Schumacher has the most fastest laps at the Imola circuit with five. He is followed by Alain Prost with three fastest laps at the circuit. The likes of Damon Hill, Nelson Piquet and Lewis Hamilton are in third with two fastest laps each.
|Nelson Piquet, Damon Hill, Lewis Hamilton
A rather dark past clouds the Imola circuit which has seen two fatal Formula One accidents, one of which saw the world lose one of the greatest drivers of all time. The 1994 San Marino GP was held at this track. That was the year when the Imola circuit witnessed no one, but two fatalities: Roland Ratzenberger and Ayrton Senna.