Eugenio Castellotti

Eugenio Castellotti (10 October 1930 – 14 March 1957) was a Formula One driver from Italy.

Driving career

Castellotti was born in Lodi, Italy. He acquired a Ferrari at the age of twenty, from a local benefactor,[1] and began racing sports cars in 1952.[2] That year he won the Portuguese Grand Prix, was third at Bari and second at Monaco which was run that year for sports cars. In 1953 he won the Messina 10 hours and finished third in the Carrera Panamericana in Mexico.[1] In 1954, he signed for Lancia and again drove sports cars whilst awaiting the team's Grand Prix car.[1] He eventually made his Grand Prix debut at Buenos Aires on 16 January 1955, for Lancia, but struggled in the warmer temperatures and crashed.[1] However, he finished second at Monaco,[3] but in mid-season the team amalgamated with Scuderia Ferrari, for whom Castellotti drove for the remainder of his career. He participated in 14 World Championship Grands Prix, achieving 3 podiums and scored a total of 19.5 championship points. He secured pole position, with Lancia, at the 1955 Belgian Grand Prix, becoming the youngest driver to do so (at age 24 years, 7 months and 26 days), a record that stood for 13 years until Jacky Ickx's pole position at the 1968 German Grand Prix.

He also participated in several non-Championship Formula One races. Castellotti won the March 1956 12 Hours of Sebring at Sebring, Florida partnered with Fangio.[1] He followed this triumph by winning the Mille Miglia race in Brescia and the Grand Prix for sports cars in Rouen, France.[2] Castellotti's Ferrari achieved a total race time of 2 hours 10 minutes 31.1 seconds, winning the race.[4] He was also second in the Nürburgring 1000 km race again partnered with Fangio.[1]

Known for his sophisticated manners and tailored clothes, Castellotti had significantly prominent media profile in Italy for his relationship with ballerina and actress Delia Scala. Castellotti and Scala were officially engaged at the time of his death.[5]

Death

He was killed at 26 years old during a private Ferrari test session at the Modena Autodrome.[6] Castellotti was testing a new Ferrari Grand Prix car for the 1957 season.[7] He crashed against a curve of the Autodrome and his body was hurled 100 yards (91.4 m). He had just been told to accelerate[citation needed] so that he could average 85.127 miles per hour (136.999 km/h). The car turned over several times and finished up in the members stand. No one else was injured. Doctors said Castellotti died instantly from a fractured skull.[2]

Legacy

Castellotti was considered the greatest Italian driver since Alberto Ascari.[2] In 1958, Castellotti's friend Giuseppe Corsi founded Scuderia Castellotti in Lodi to honour his memory. The team used modified Ferrari Tipo 553 2.0-litre engines bored out to 2.5 litres and rebranded as "Castellotti", with "Eugenio" on the cam covers. The cars were easily distinguishable from other F1 T51s in that their exhausts were fitted on the left, while all other engines used in T51s had their exhausts on the right. The team competed in four events in 1960 with Italian drivers Gino Munaron, Giorgio Scarlatti and Giulio Cabianca. Cabianca scored the team's first championship points by finishing fourth at the 1960 Italian Grand Prix. The team folded in 1961 after Cabianca fatally crashed in the same autodrome where Castellotti had his accident. Castellotti's legacy has been honoured by Club Auto Moto Storiche Castellotti in Lodi.[8]

Major career wins (sportscars):

Racing record

Complete Formula One World Championship results

(key) (Races in bold indicate pole position)

Year Team Chassis Engine 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 WDC Points
1955 Scuderia Lancia Lancia D50 Lancia DS50 2.5 V8 ARG
Ret
MON
2
500 BEL
Ret
3rd 12
Scuderia Ferrari Ferrari 625 Ferrari 107 2.5 L4 GBR
6
Ferrari 555 Ferrari 106 2.5 L4 NED
5
ITA
3
1956 Scuderia Ferrari Lancia Ferrari D50 Lancia Ferrari DS50 2.5 V8 ARG
Ret
MON
4
500 BEL
Ret
FRA
2
GBR
10
GER
Ret
ITA
8
6th 7.5
1957 Scuderia Ferrari Ferrari 801 Lancia Ferrari DS50 2.5 V8 ARG
Ret
MON 500 FRA GBR GER PES ITA NC 0
Source:[9]

Non-championship results

(key) (Races in bold indicate pole position) (Races in italics indicate fastest lap)

Year Entrant Chassis Engine 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18
1955 Scuderia Lancia Lancia D50 Lancia V8 NZL
4
PAU
2
COR
Scuderia Ferrari
7
AVO
1956 Scuderia Ferrari Lancia D50 Lancia V8 BUE
Ret
GLV SYR
Ret
AIN INT
Ret
1957 Scuderia Ferrari Lancia D50 Lancia V8 BUE
5
SYR PAU GLV NAP RMS CAE INT MOD MOR
† Indicates shared drive with Luigi Musso

References

  1. ^ a b c d e f Small, Steve. The Guinness Complete Grand Prix Who's Who. p. 95. ISBN 0851127029.
  2. ^ a b c d Castellotti, Ace Italian Driver, Killed Testing New Racing Car, The New York Times, March 15, 1957, Page 29
  3. ^ Steve Small. The Guinness Complete Grand Prix Who's Who. p. 94. ISBN 0851127029.
  4. ^ Castellotti Auto First, The New York Times, July 9, 1956, Page 29.
  5. ^ "Eugenio Castellotti: Con le corse nel sangue" (in Italian). archivio.unita.news. Retrieved 9 September 2019. Nei primi mesi del 1957 il nome di Castellotti compare sui giornali non per le sue imprese sportive, ma per la sua discussa relazione con la soubrette Delia Scala
  6. ^ "Eugenio Castellotti". www.grandprix.com. Retrieved 27 January 2016.
  7. ^ Memoirs of Enzo Ferrari's Lieutenant by Franco Gozzi p.58
  8. ^ "Club AutoMotoStoriche Eugenio Castellotti | Lodi | Benvenuti". www.camseugeniocastellotti.com. Retrieved 18 December 2019.
  9. ^ Small, Steve (1994). The Guinness Complete Grand Prix Who's Who. Guinness. pp. 94–95. ISBN 0851127029.

External links

Preceded by
Bill Vukovich
Formula One fatal accidents
14 March 1957
Succeeded by
Keith Andrews
Records
Preceded by
Jerry Hoyt
26 years, 121 days
(1955 Indianapolis 500)
Youngest Grand Prix polesitter
24 years, 238 days
(1955 Belgian Grand Prix)
Succeeded by
Jacky Ickx
23 years, 216 days
(1968 German GP)