Make your own free website on


 F3000 Italia 2000 - season preview & calendar

In 2000, F3000 Italia has the potential to grow on its 1999 foundations, with a cap put on entries for International F3000. The top teams are to stay, including Draco who will only enter Italian F3000 after selling their International F3000 entry to LukOil Arden. Team Martello, champion team in 1999 with Giorgio Vinella, remain in the series as Da Vinci having sold their International F3000 entry to Coloni. Monaco Motorsport has set up a second 'junior' team while Fortec have expanded their efforts to enter a two-car team. A number of new teams are entering the series, including Orbit Motorsport which is supported by International F3000 mainstay Astromega.

Durango have become the official Benetton Junior team, signing Int'l F3000 refugees Andrej Pavicevic and Giovanni Montanari. Aussie Pavicevic struggled in 1999 for Fortec, but made a good impression considering it was only his second season of single-seaters. The less fraught atmosphere of the Italian series should allow him to gain experience and spring a few surprises. The Durango Benetton Junior Team F3000 Italia Lola T96/50s will be decked out in Benetton liveries. Italian F3 frontrunners Gianluca Calcagni (Monaco), Gabriele Varano (Ghinzani) and Michele Spoldi (Sighinolfi) have all signed to race in Italy's top single seater category. Varano is joined at Team Ghinzani by Formula Renault driver Luca Vacis.

The series has brought two Brazilian talents across from South American F3. The Sperafico twins, Rodrigo and Ricardo, will race for ADM Competition and Draco respectively. The USA is represented by Derek Hill, son of 1961 world champion Phil Hill. Hill did not have a particularly good season in Formula Palmer Audi last season, suffering a terrifying shunt at Brands Hatch, but he has certaintly demonstrated speed back home. Thomas Biagi will race again for GP Racing, having competed in F3000 since 1995 and finally showing form in his few races for the team last year. At the Astromega affiliated Orbit Motorsport team F3 veteran Sascha Bert is joined by world karting champion Danilo Rossi. Bert failed to impress in the ultra-competitive International series early last year, but should do better this season. Rossi may find an F3000 Lola is too big a jump, but we'll have to wait and see. The Malta Racing Team brings the first female to F3000 racing since Giovanna Amati in the form of the Austrian Claudia Steffek.

Britain will again be represented in the series; Arden, running BAR test driver and Japanese F3 champion Darren Manning in the International series, will also run a British driver in F3000 Italia. Warren Hughes beat the highly-rated Marc Hynes (the 1999 British F3 champ) to the drive. Hughes has plenty of F3 experience and this could be his big break, although he accepts that in his thirties it is too late to aim for F1. His teammate Viktor Maslov will again compete in the International series in the same season. Mark Shaw, a frontrunner in the first half of last season, had signed for Edenbridge, but he chose to retire from the sport after setting poor times in pre-season testing.

The big question is what lies in store for the champion this year? Last year Giorgio Vinella's title did not help him to get a drive for this season. Runner-up Werner Lupberger has turned to sportscar racing, while race winners Marcelo Battistuzzi and Dino Morelli have hardly been bombarded with offers. Some of those who made their F3000 debuts in Italy last year have moved on however. Alex Yoong is racing in Formula Nippon (with the help of Malaysian sponsorship) as is Polish driver Jaroslaw Wierczuk. Kristian Kolby and Ananda Mikola have found their way into International F3000 with DAMS and WRT. This season there are far more 'up and coming' young drivers in the series; hopefully a year's experience in F3000 machinery will hold them in good stead for an international series drive for 2001. Perhaps we'll see a number of them being assessed by the International F3000 teams in the "Autumn Cup" mini-series in Britain. 


F3000 Italia 2000 calendar






Vallelunga (I)

April 2nd 2000


Mugello (I)

April 16th 2000


Imola (I)

May 14th 2000


Varano (I)

June 18th 2000


Monza (I)

June 25th 2000


Vallelunga (I)

July 23rd 2000


Donington (GB)

August 6th 2000


Enna-Pergusa (I)

September 3rd 2000


Misano (I)

October 22nd 2000