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 NEWS ARCHIVES: April 2000

Archived news on International F3000, Italian F3000, F3000 Autumn Cup (UK) and Formula Nippon.


April 22nd 2000 - International F3000:

Webber takes maiden win Arrows test driver Mark Webber took victory in his second ever F3000 race at Silverstone. The race started behind the safety car after heavy rain had left the track dangerously wet. Starting from second on the grid, polesitter Darren Manning (Arden) stormed ahead of the European Arrows driver as the safety car pulled in after 5 laps. Webber gradually closed the gap and on lap 15 made his move, the two cars colliding at Club corner. Webber then began to pull away, only for Manning to respond and close up to just over a second by the last lap. Third position fell to Justin Wilson (Nordic), his best ever result. He was closely followed by Enrique Bernoldi (Red Bull Junior) with Bruno Junqueira (Petrobras Junior) 5th and Soheil Ayari (Coloni) 6th. Imola winner Nicolas Minassian finished 11th, while the McLaren junior pair of Tomas Enge and Stephane Sarrazin could only finish 13th and 18th after a series of spins. Full race results are here.


April 21st 2000 - International F3000:

Alonso disqualified from row 3 Rookie Spaniard Fernando Alonso will miss the race tomorrow after being disqualified from F3000 qualifying at Silverstone. The Astromega Lola of the reigning Formula Nissan champion, who would have started in sixth position, was found to have bolts connecting the engine and gearbox to the tub out of alignment. As a result Yves Olivier (Witmeur Team KTR) is promoted into 26th place on the grid. Revised qualifying results are here.


April 21st 2000 - International F3000:

Manning takes pole at Silverstone BAR test driver and F3000 rookie Darren Manning (Arden) took pole position for the British Grand Prix support round today. Fellow Brit Justin Wilson (Nordic) was denied pole in the second session when Manning put in two laps that would have been good enough for pole. Mark Webber (European Arrows) then set the second fastest time, demoting Wilson to third on the grid. He is joined on the second row by Enrique Bernoldi (Red Bull Junior) with championship favourite Bruno Junqueira (Petrobras Junior) fifth. McLaren junior driver Stephane Sarrazin had another terrible qualifying to start 19th, two places ahead of teammate Tomas Enge. Two rookies to impress were Fernando Alonso (Astromega) in 6th and Webber's teammate Christijan Albers (European Arrows) in 8th. Both sessions started wet with the track gradually drying, the conditions causing a number of spins. Jaime Melo Jr., a star at Imola, spun into the gravel twice in the opening session. More seriously, Andrea Piccini was lucky to escape without serious injury from a shunt with Kevin McGarrity which interrupted the first session (see below). Full qualifying results are here. (Source:


April 21st 2000 - International F3000:

Piccini slightly hurt in crash Kid Jensen Racing's Andrea Piccini was lucky to escape with minor injuries from a shunt in first qualifying at Silverstone. In pouring rain Tomas Enge (McLaren junior) spun into the pit wall exiting Woodcote. Kevin McGarrity (Nordic) was following close behind and slowed suddenly, Piccini unable to avoid ramming him. Piccini's Lola rode up the back of McGarrity's car and went off the track, losing a front wheel in the process. The session was stopped as the debris was cleared, with the Italian driver Piccini forced to sit out the second session and therefore miss the race. (Source:


April 20th 2000 - Italian F3000:

Fortec expand into Italian F3000 with Scheld International F3000 team Fortec Motorsport are to expand into the Italian series from the next round. One of their two cars will be driven by their International series rookie driver Andreas Scheld. German Scheld, graduating from German Super Touring, will use the series to gain vital experience. Fortec had already announced their intention to compete in F3000 Italia before the season got underway. (Source: Autosport)


April 20th 2000 - International F3000:

Ayari in difficult Lights debut Coloni F3000 driver Soheil Ayari had a poor debut Indy Lights race at Long Beach last weekend. The Frenchman qualified 13th for Brian Stewart Racing before crashing out early. The race was won by fast Kiwi Scott Dixon after polesitter Jonny Kane slid out of the lead with four laps to go. (Source: Autosport)


April 16th 2000 - Italian F3000:

Ricardo Sperafico takes victory at Mugello Italian F3000 rookie Ricardo Sperafico won the second round of the Italian F3000 championship at Mugello for ADM Motorsport today. The former British Formula Ford driver won from F3000 veteran Thomas Biagi (GP Racing) and 'Babalus' (First GP). Vallelunga winner Gabriele Lancieri (Sighinolfi) finished fourth, while Giovanni Montanari finally scored some points in F3000 competition with fifth for the Durango Benetton Junior team. 20 drivers finished the race, all on the lead lap, from a strong grid of 26 cars. The final points position went to Ricardo's twin brother Rodrigo (Draco). Mugello report, qualifying and race times available here. (Source:


April 15th 2000 - Italian F3000:

Brazilian rookie on pole at Mugello Italian F3000 rookie Ricardo Sperafico took pole position for the second round of the Italian F3000 championship today. He will be joined on the front row by fellow rookie Gianluca Calcagni (Monaco Motorsport). Thomas Biagi (GP Racing) will start 3rd alongside reigning Italian F3 champion Peter Sundberg (Team Ghinzani). Fifth is Leonardo Nienkotter (Draco) and 6th is the mysterious "Babalus" (First GP). Ricardo Sperafico's twin brother Rodrigo starts 7th for Draco ahead of round 1 winner Gabriele Lancieri (Sighinolfi). There were no changes in the strong 26-car entry since the last round. Full qualifying details here. (Source:


April 16th 2000 -Formula Nippon:

Takagi takes second straight victory at Motegi F1 refugee Toranosuke Takagi took his second straight Formula Nippon win for the PIAA Nakajima team at Twin Ring Motegi today. Front row starter Satoshi Motoyama (IMPUL) made a good start to pass polesitter Takagi into the first corner and begin to open up a lead. From lap six Takagi responded and on lap 10 he passed Motoyama into the 90 degree corner. Takagi then set a series of fastest laps and maintained the lead as the two leaders made pitstops. Motoyama lost a position to Krumm as he made a stop, but was soon able to pass the German on fresh tires. Michael Krumm (5Zigen) took a third consecutive second placed finish, rising from third as Motoyama struck gearbox trouble on lap 37. Takagi's rookie teammate Tsugio Matsuda impressed by taking third from fourth on the grid, also setting the fastest lap of the race. Matsuda passed Motoyama on lap 40 in a move on the back straight. The stricken Motoyama held on to finish fourth ahead of Juichi Wakisaka (ARTA) and Katsutomo Kaneishi (ARTA). See the qualifying and race positions here. Go to the Formula Nippon Official Site for the race report and full results. (Source:


April 15th 2000 -Formula Nippon:

Takagi on pole for Round 2 Toranokuke Takagi took pole position for tomorrow's second Formula Nippon round at Twin Ring Motegi. The PIAA Nakajima driver will start ahead of Satoshi Motoyama (IMPUL) and Michael Krumm (5Zigen). Takagi's teammate Tsugio Matsuda impressed with fourth on the grid, ahead of round 1 polesitter Ralph Firman (NOVA). See the Formula Nippon qualifying and race positions here. Go to the Formula Nippon Official Site for the full qualifying results. (Source:


April 8th 2000 - International F3000:

Minassian wins close race at Imola Frenchman Nicolas Minassian took his second F3000 victory by winning the opening round at Imola today. The Super Nova driver passed polesitter Bruno Junqueira (Petrobras Junior) at the start, Mark Webber following the pair in third. The trio remained close throughout much of the race, but the nature of the track meant the battle for the lead was little more than a procession. As Minassian opened up a lead the action focused on the battle for second. Webber made a few attacks on Junqueira, but the Brazilian held on for second place. Jaime Melo Jr made a stunning F3000 debut as Junqueira's teammate. Qualifying fourth, the SudAm F3 graduate held onto the position until the finish, despite pressure from Tomas Enge ( Team/McLaren Junior). The experienced Fabrizio Gollin (Coloni) drove a mature race to finish sixth, under pressure from Stephane Sarrazin ( who qualified down in 18th place. Fernando Alonso made an impressive debut, finishing ninth after battling with Justin Wilson (Nordic) and Mario Haberfeld (Fortec), the latter having survived a couple of high speed offs. David Saelens (Super Nova) and Sebastien Bourdais (Gauloises Formula/Prost Junior) collided at Rivazza, while Enrique Bernoldi (Red Bull Junior) retired from fourth position early in the race. Bas Leinders spun out of seventh with a few laps to go. Full race report and times here.


April 7th 2000 - International F3000:

Junqueira on pole at Imola Bruno Junqueira took pole position for Round 1 of the International F3000 championship at Imola today. The Petrobras Junior pilot pipped Super Nova's Nicolas Minassian to the position at the end of the second 45-minute qualifying session with a time of 1m38.038s. Third and fourth on the grid went to two F3000 rookies, Mark Webber (European Formula/Arrows Junior) and Jaime Melo Jr. (Petrobras Junior). Enrique Bernoldi (Red Bull Junior) and Fabrice Walfisch (Astromega) will start fifth and sixth. McLaren junior's championship hopeful Stephane Sarrazin could only manage 18th, while teammate Tomas Enge will start 7th. Times were very close, all 26 starters covered by just 1.265s. The four non-qualifiers were Hidetoshi Misusada, Yves Olivier, Victor Maslov and Andreas Scheld. Full qualifying times are here.


April 2nd 2000 - Italian F3000:

Lancieri takes maiden Italian F3000 victory Gabriele Lancieri took his first F3000 Italia victory in the opening round at Vallelunga today. Joining the Sighinolfi driver on the podium were Rodrigo Sperafico (Draco) and Warren Hughes (Arden). In fourth was Thomas Biagi (GP Racing), fifth Marcelo Battistuzzi (Monaco Junior Team) and sixth Manuel Giao (Monaco Motorsport). Polesitter Andrej Pavicevic finished 20th, 6 laps down. More details when available. Vallelunga qualifying and race times are here. (Source: )


April 2nd 2000 - Italian F3000:

Pavicevic on pole at Vallelunga Australian Andrej Pavicevic took pole position for the opening Italian F3000 round at Vallelunga yesterday. He set fastest time with his Durango Benetton Junior Lola T96/50 of 1m:10.963s. Gabriele Lancieri (Sighinolfi) will start second with Manuel Giao (Monaco) and Rodrigo Sperafico (Draco) third and fourth. The USA's Derek Hill made a strong debut with fifth on the grid for Da Vinci, the renamed title-winning Martello squad. The final entries to the series have finally been confirmed now that the season has begun. Race winner Marcelo Battistuzzi has signed for the second Monaco Motorsport team (Monaco Junior), having raced for them on occasion in 1999. Italian F3 champion Peter Sundberg is competing for Team Ghinzani. Previously fellow F3 front-runner Gabriele Varano was expected to race for the team. Meanwhile F3000 regular Paolo Ruberti has joined ADM Competition. Vallelunga qualifying times are here. (Source: )



 Information sourced from various websites, teletext and Autosport magazine, but text is totally changed (and added to) from original reports. This news is updated as often as possible, but news stories may be missed.