Posts Tagged ‘Giancarlo Baghetti’

baghetti syracuse gp 1961

Giancarlo Baghetti on the way to his maiden Grand Prix win in his first GP aboard Ferrari 156 chassis 0008. He won four Grands Prix in 1961; the French at Reims, and three non-championship events here at Siracusa on April 24, in Napoli thee weeks later, and the Coppa Italia at Vallelunga in October …

The Syracuse locals are enjoying Giancarlo’s delicate touch and the glorious howl of the little 1.5-litre V6 around the 3.478 mile Sicilian street circuit, look closely at the kids in the trees!

While the 156 was the class of the field in 1961, Baghetti beat a field of depth in Syracuse. Dan Gurney and Jo Bonnier were second and third in Porsche 718s, then came Jack Brabham’s works Cooper T55 Climax, Roy Salvadori’s Cooper T53 Climax, and in sixth and seventh places were Jim Clark and Lorenzo Bandini in Lotus 18 Climax and Cooper T51 Maserati respectively.

John Surtees’ Cooper Climax sandwiched by the Gurney and Bonnier Porsche 718s at Syracuse in 1961 (Motorsport)
Moss chasing Baghetti and Gurney; Lotus 18, Ferrari 156 and Porsche 718 (B Cahier)
Moss in a Rob Walker Lotus 18 Climax chases Jo Bonniers’ Porsche 718 at Syracuse. Jo was third and Moss eighth with a misfiring engine (unattributed

Despite the presence of the-greats, Baghetti popped the Ferrari into second slot on the grid behind Gurney on pole. He didn’t make a great start, appearing in seventh place at the end of the first of 56 laps, but used the power of the car to progress forward through the field to lead Gurney and Surtees by the end of the sixth lap.

Once in front he led with calm, consistent precision, keeping Dan at bay to win by five seconds. The youngster’s only mistake was to whistle up the escape road at the hairpin on his victory lap when he missed his braking point whilst waving to an adoring Sicilian crowd!

The car Giancarlo raced is the very first mid-engined Ferrari – the 246P Richie Ginther debuted at Monaco in 1960, chassis 0008. This morphed progressively from a 2.5-litre GP car into the prototype 1.5-litre GP 156 by the 1960 season’s end. See this story about a most significant Ferrari, it is a great pity Enzo destroyed it along with all of its other 156 brothers and sisters; https://primotipo.com/?s=ferrari+246p

0008 always raced with the 65-degree 1.5-litre V6 rather than the definitive 1961 120-degree variant which Richie Ginther was to give debut at Syracuse, but didn’t at the last minute due to oil scavenge problems revealed in testing at Modena. Checkout this article on the testing of the 120-degree motor here; https://primotipo.com/2018/09/11/ferrari-156-testing/

Innes Ireland and Jim Clark- #20 is Jim’s Lotus 21 Climax (B Cahier)
Graham Hill, BRM P48/57 Climax FPF (unattributed)
Giancarlo, Syracuse 1961 (unattributed)

By the start of 1961 0008 was already an old nail, so Ferrari were happy to hand the machine over to a grouping of Italian car clubs – the Federazione Italiane Scuderia Automobolistiche (FISA) as a means of developing promising Italian drivers. While the car was entered by FISA, it was prepared by the factory – very well prepared as it transpired!

Giancarlo had impressed in 1960 at the wheel of a Dagrada Lancia Formula Junior, and was awarded the FISA drive. About ten of these front-engined FJ’s were built by Milanese, Angelo Dagrada who was known to Giancarlo via modifications he had made to Baghetti’s industrialist father’s Alfa Romeo 1900 road car, the family owned a foundry in Milan. Giancarlo cut his racing teeth with this Alfa and Abarths in local events.

These interesting cars bucked the Italian trend of using the ubiquitous Fiat inline-four in favour of the Lancia Appia 1098cc ten-degree V4 which was light and compact – and powerful after vast development of the standard cylinder head turned it into a crossflow unit.

Giancarlo aboard his Dagrada Lancia FJ at Monza on 25 April 1960 (unattributed)

Giancarlo was seventh in the 1960 Campionato ANPEC/Auto Italiana d’ Europa Formula Junior Championship with one win from only three point scoring rounds. In front of him was Colin Davis, Jacques Cales, Denny Hulme, Lorenzo Bandini, Henri Grandsire and Henry Taylor.

Baghetti’s win depicted in the advertisement below was a big one, the VIII Trofeo Bruno e Fofi Vigorelli at Monza on April 24-25 attracted 43 cars, 16 were non-qualifiers. Giancarlo won both his heat and one of the two finals, to win on aggregate from Juan Manuel Bordeu and Henri Grandsire aboard Stanguellini Fiats. The class field included such notables as Colin Davis, Carlo Facetti, Carroll Smith, Lorenzo Bandini, Rob Slotemaker, Ludovico Scarfiotti, Geki Russo, Gerhard Mitter, Eric Carlsson, John Whitmore, Teodoro Zeccoli and Tony Maggs.

In the Campionato Italiano, he was equal fourth with Geki Russo behind Renato Pirocchi, Roberto Lippi and Antonio Maglione, and second in the Prova Addestrativa behind Antonio Maglione.

Some sources have it that Giancarlo was a controversial choice for the FISA ride, but if you look at the races entered/won, his strike rate looks pretty good. In addition, his Dagrada was generally felt to be an inferior weapon to the Stanguellini Fiat used by most of his rivals; the choice stands the sniff test I think, whatever the case, he certainly grasped the opportunity with both hands.

Baghetti’s purple patch continued at Posillipo a month later when he won the Gran Premio di Napoli on May 14, again at the wheel of 0008.

On this occasion he finished the 60 lap, 150km road course race in front of Peter Ashmore’s Lotus and Bandini’s Centro Sud Cooper T51 Maserati, after Roy Salvadori gave chase early in the race, only to be thwarted by a puncture in his Yeoman Credit Cooper Climax.

The entry was devoid of championship front runners on this occasion, they were otherwise engaged at Monaco, Stirling Moss in one-of-those drives won the race aboard Rob Walker’s Lotus 18 Climax, one of three championship events which didn’t go to the 156 that season. The German GP also fell to Maestro Moss in the nimble, less powerful Lotus 18, and at Watkins Glen Innes Ireland won the first GP for Team Lotus, and himself, aboard a Lotus 21 Climax.

GP di Napoli, Posillipo 14 May 1961 grid. Baghetti 156 at left, Roy Salvadori, Cooper T53 Climax and then Gerry Ashmore’s Lotus 18 Climax at right. Row two is Ian Burgess’ Lotus 18 Climax at left and Lorenzo Bandini’s Cooper T51 Maserati at right. Row three is Giovanni Alberti, de Tomaso Osca at left and Menato Boffa, Cooper T45 Climax at right. Baghetti won from Ashmore and Bandini (unattributed)
Hill, Ginther and Von Trips – Ferrari 156 by three front row at Reims in 1961 (unattributed)
Reims start with Thillois in the distance, July 2, 1961. Up front its Hill, Ginther and von Trips from left to right, with Moss in the Walker Lotus 18/21 Climax on his own, and the rest- winner Giancarlo was Q12 but started poorly and is the red spec almost straddling the dashed-yellow line, about six cars from last. All of which says a lot about the Italian cars power and torque out of the slow Muizon and Thillois corners (Motorsport)
Who said the Lotus 21 had better brakes than the Ferrari 156?! Innes Ireland runs into strife under brakes whilst attempting to slip under Giancarlo watched by Jim Clark in another 21, Graham Hill, BRM, Jo Bonnier, Porsche 718, Bruce McLaren’s Cooper T55 Climax and Dan Gurney in the other works Porsche 718, Reims 1961

0008 went back to the factory for a freshen up and then joined the three factory entries of Phil Hill, Taffy von Trips and Richie Ginther at Reims on the July 2 weekend for the French Grand Prix.

There he took a stunning victory a tenth of a second clear of Gurney’s Porsche 718 with Jim Clark’s Lotus 21 Climax a further minute adrift. It was an all Ferrari front row with Hill on pole and Ginther and von Trips alongside, Giancarlo was Q12.

Hill led from the start, in that order, until Richie spun giving third place to Moss’ Lotus 18 Climax – behind this group there was a massive slipstreaming battle involving the Gurney and Bonnier Porsche 718s, the works Lotus 21 Climax’ of Jim Clark and Innes Ireland, Graham Hill’s BRM P48/57, Bruce McLaren’s Cooper T55 Climax and Giancarlo.

Two of the most important aspects of longevity for a race photographer are a sense of self preservation and fleetness of foot …Bonnier, Baghetti, Clark and Gurney, Reims 1961 (unattributed)
Clark, Baghetti and Ireland exit Thillois (Motorsport)
Spinner Ginther in front of Lucien Bianchi, Lotus 18/21 Climax (B Cahier)
Gurney and Baghetti in the final stages (B Cahier)

Taffy had engine trouble after 18 laps so he was out, Phil Hill spun on the surface which was becoming very slippery in the intense heat on lap 38, he managed to restart but was a lap down. Then Ginther led, but he too spun, and had no sooner recovered before having engine problems – no oil pressure after 40 laps, Moss had brake problems so he too retired after completing 31 laps.

Progressively the challengers fell away leaving a man-on-man battle which went on for many laps, with the lead changing by the lap between Dan Gurney – one of the finest drivers of the era – and still to win his first championship Grand Prix, and GP debutant Giancarlo Baghetti.

On the final lap, Dan out-braked Giancarlo into Thillois, the last corner, but on the sprint to the line – with more punch than the four-cylinder Porsche – Baghetti dived out of Gurney’s slipstream a couple of hundred yards before the finish in a perfectly timed move to win by the narrowest of margins from Gurney, Clark, Ireland and McLaren.

Giancarlo’s 1961 run of success wasn’t over yet, as noted at the outset, he won the minor, Prima Coppa Italia at Vallelunga on October 12. This time he raced a Porsche 718, winning both 30 lap, 106 km thirty minute heats from pole, taking the overall win on aggregate from Ernesto Prinoth, Lotus 18 Climax, and Nino Vaccarella’s Cooper T51 Maserati.

The balance of Baghetti’s career is dealt with in this article, sadly, the precocious talent of 1961 faded way too quickly; https://primotipo.com/2015/05/08/giancarlo-baghetti-lotus-49-ford-italian-grand-prix-1967/

Aintree 1961 (Echo)
Coppa Italia, Vallelunga October 12, 1961. #24 Nino Vaccarella rebodied Cooper Maserati T51, #2 Ernesto Prinoth, Lotus 18 Climax and at right Giancarlo Baghetti, Porsche 718. The Lotus 18 Maserati on row two is Gaetano Starrabba (unattributed)

The 1961 Ferrari 156 : Technical…

For early 156 Dino enthusiasts these photographs of 0008 taken by Bernard Cahier at Siracusa on this Tuesday April 25, 1961 long-weekend will be of great interest as they show the first chassis in its definitive 1961 form.

All 156’s built and raced in 1961-1962 started right here, or I guess twelve months before if you argue that the original 2.4-litre 246P version of 0008 was the starting point, which of course factually it was.

The bodywork of the car is ‘unique’ in that it has two supplementary air intake slots on the cowling, it’s very sleek compared to 0008 as it was in early 1960, to the form shown above. The shark-nose was supposedly low-drag, Carlo Chiti deployed it in his 1961 sportscar designs as well, the approach was a function of work in Ferrari’s scale-model wind tunnel.

It may well be that the shark-nose design was suggested to Chiti by Medardo Fantuzzi, one of Ferrari’s favoured external body-builders. He modified a Maserati 250F for Kiwi Ross Jensen (#2508) in this manner in late 1957, and then two other 250Fs for Temple Buell (#2533 and 2534). Fantuzzi built the 156 and sportscar bodies.

Maserati 250F ‘2508’, ex-Moss/Jensen, when owned and raced by Brian Prescott at Wigram, NZ in April 1961. Medardo Fantuzzi nose to the fore (Classic Auto News)

Medardo Fantuzzi with the three ‘shark nose’ Maserati 250Fs at his Modena factory in late 1957 or early 1958. Jensen’s at left – he finished second to Jack Brabham in the January 11, 1958 NZ GP in his upgraded car – the two Temple Buell machines alongside (unattributed)

Doug Nye described the chassis thus ‘The multi-tubular chassis itself was crude and hefty looking, not as unimpressive as a Cooper’s – not least of all its tube runs were straight – but not a patch on the lightweight lattice of a Lotus, BRM or even a Porsche.’ Big, butch, beefy and crude the chassis was, but it certainly did the job in 1961. It was only when the chassis sophistication of the Brits was harnessed to the power of the Coventry Climax and BRM V8s in 1962 that the class of ’61 became the dunce of ’62.

The main chassis rails were made of 1 1/2 inch steel spaced vertically 15 inches apart, the 120-degree motor required bulged top rails for installation, whereas the 65-degree unit did not, its rails were straight. The 120-degree frame swallowed the earlier motor whereas the wide engine wouldn’t fit into the narrower 65-degree frame.

Suspension front and rear comprised upper and lower braced wishbones and coil spring/damper (Koni) units, roll bars were adjustable both front and rear although it appears Giancarlo didn’t race with a rear fitted in Siracusa. Chiti set the cars up with bulk static negative camber, I guess the race Dunlops fitted to the 156 liked the setup.

156 cockpit, Monaco 1961
Engine bay of 0008 at Syracuse. Note the beefy spaceframe chassis Doug Nye described as being welded together by ‘Mr Blobby’. 65-degree second series Tipo 156 V6, bore/stroke 73×58.8mm, circa 180bhp fed by three 38mm Webers. The 120 degree engine had two bespoke triple choke Weber 40IF3C carbs. Note the large transaxle and starter motor, no rear roll bar fitted, suspension by upper and lower wishbones, ventilated disc brakes are inboard

The 1.5-litre Vittorio Jano (and team) designed 65-degree V6 first appeared as a front-engined F2 car in 1958. The DOHC, chain-driven, two-valve, twin-plug, triple Weber fed motor developed circa 180bhp @ 9000rpm and was fitted to a scaled down version of the then current 2.5-litre Lancia D50 derived – and then further evolved – V8 engined 801 F1 chassis, then designated 156.

The capacity of Jano’s V6 engine grew progressively to 2417cc in which form the Ferrari Dino 246 won the 1958 drivers championship for Mike Hawthorn.

As time went on it became clear Ferrari had the makings of an excellent car for the new 1.5-litre F1 which commenced on January 1, 1961, and which was expressed in the evolution of 0008 from a chubby, pudgy 2.4-litre F1 car at Monaco in May 1960 a svelte shark-nosed 1.5-litre F2 machine before Monza in September.

Chiti’s definitive engine for 1961 was a new variant of the Dino using a very wide-angle V6 of 120-degrees to lower the engines centre of gravity, and simplify manufacture of the engine’s crank. A motor of this width would not have fitted comfortably into the front-engined Dino 246/256 chassis.

The two camshafts were still chain driven, the heads still two-valvers, and still twin-plug. The dimensions of the 1960 Solitude 65-degree engine were adopted – bore/stroke of 73mm x 58.8mm for a capacity of 1476.6cc. Nye reports that all of the major castings were made in Siluminum, the 120-degree engine weighed 225 pounds, 30 pounds less than the good ‘ole Coventry Climax 1.5-FPF four cylinder motor.

Carburettors were bespoke, beautiful Weber triple-choke type 40 IF3C. Ferrari initially claimed 190bhp @ 9500rpm but ‘initial tests only yielded 177, which was still 30 more than the FPF’ used by the English teams in 1961. Jano also gave the existing 65-degree engine a bit of a tickle as a second-string unit, pending enough 120-degree engines to go around the three car Scuderia Ferrari team. When the FISA team were present four 156s presented a formidable challenge to the opposition…

Compare and contrast. Richie’s 156 0001, the prototype 120-degree engine chassis during the 1961 Monaco GP weekend. Note how low that engine sits in the chassis, trick triple throat Webers clear
(G Cavara)
0008 butt, Syracuse 1961
(B Cahier)

While the V6s in either format were delicate, compact little things, the transaxle was anything but- however it did prove problem free, as Ferrari gearboxes down the eons have tended to be. The same ‘boxes were used with both engines – these 16.25 inch long units were developed versions of the five speed and reverse transaxle used in 0008, with the clutch assembly exposed to the breeze on the end plate. The thing looks bigger than it actually was due to a wide bell-housing between engine and transmission to push the engine forward in the frame to obtain the weight distribution Chiti sought.

Nye records that Ferrari appear to have built eight chassis during 1961. 0008 was numbered in the 246 Dino sequencing, in addition there were new chassis’ serials 0001-0006, with two appearing under the 0003 number. Von Trips won the Dutch and British GP’s in 0004 which was destroyed in his fatal Monza accident, Hill won at Spa in 0003, and Monza in 0002 while Giancarlo won at Reims in our friend, 0008.

And what about poor old 0008 you ask?

Giancarlo raced it at Aintree in the British GP the week after Reims (#58 below) doing enough damage to the prototype for it to be scrapped; he crashed at Waterways Corner while avoiding another competitor having his own moment when running in twelfth place from Q19. Of course all the 156s were ultimately destroyed, but if only one of the many chassis built between 1960-1962 were to have been preserved surely it would be this one…

(Echo)

Giancarlo above while up front Taffy von Trips won the July 15 British Grand Prix from his teammates Hill and Ginther, Jack Brabham was best of the rest, 68 seconds behind Von Trips in his Cooper T55 Climax.

0008 in the Aintree paddock, note the different nosecone fitted to the car compared to that used in the Syracuse heat. Wire wheels were very much old hat by this stage, Ferrari retained them in 1962 but Campagnolo’s were part of the 156/63 package in 1963.

Etcetera…

(B Cahier)

Whether the shark-nose was more aerodynamic or not is a moot point. Didn’t Carlo Chiti put his styling stamp on the Ferraris of the time with these oh-so-distinctive visual cues.

I’m cheating a bit here, this Ferrari launch shot in Maranello was in February 1962 not that the 156 was much different, to its cost – 246SP at left.

(B Reeves)

Baghetti in the FISA 156 from Moss’ Rob Walker Lotus 18 Climax at Syracuse in 1961. Nice.

(Echo)

Dry practice at Aintree, Baghetti from Von Trips, the winner, chassis 0008 from 0004. The former was scrapped after this race, the latter destroyed in Taffy’s horrific accident at Monza in September.

Bibliography…

‘History of the Grand Prix Car’ Doug Nye, Veloce Today article by Pete Vack, F2Index, Wikipedia, F1.com

Photo Credits…

LAT, Motorsport, Bernard Reeves, Giuseppe Cavara, Getty Images-Bernard Cahier, Echo Liverpool, B St. Clare-Tregilgas, Classic Auto News

Tailpieces: Giancarlo Baghetti at the wheel of his Ferrari 156 during 1961…

baghetti 1961 (unattributed)

 

(unattributed)

Listen Mauro, I think we need to try this. Baghetti, place unknown in 1961, Ferrari 156.

Finito…

ats monza 1

Phil Hill’s ATS 100 enters the Curva Parabolica during the 1963 Italian Grand Prix, Monza 8 September…

The expression on the great American’s face is probably indicative of the joy he is deriving from the car. He is on his way to 11th place, a finish at last in the third race meeting for Carlo Chiti’s little spaceframe 1.5 litre V8 engined racer.

ATS was born as a result of a confluence of events; Ferrari’s senior management ‘Maranello Palace Revolution’ of late 1961 and the eagerness of 24 year old Venetian Count Giovanni Volpi di Misurata to part with a swag of his inheritance…

Doug Nye describes Laura Ferrari, as a ‘spitfire wife’, she was famous for her interfering ways in the family business which seems to have been rather well run by Enzo down the decades if in a somewhat imperious, autocratic manner.

The senior team at Ferrari eventually tired of Laura’s incessant interference, she had always been a Scuderia Ferrari shareholder but became a regular visitor to the factory and to the races in 1960. One not shy in providing direction to said chiefs where she felt it warranted.

Her intrusions and interference grew so bad that after Taffy Von Trips funeral in late 1961 a letter was written to Ferrari signed by various of his senior managers requesting she stay clear of the factory. During the following regular weekly meeting with the Commendatore he gave those miscreants as he saw them, their marching orders, eight ultimately departing.

Ferrari, in time honoured Italian fashion, was a bit of a scallywag with the signoritas and was always under a certain amount of pressure from the chief. A believer in the ‘Happy Wife, Happy Life’ dictum he gave the boys their parting cheques, keeping wifey on side was more important than them. He rated the depth of talent he had within the factory gates. What he lost and didn’t have he could hire, Ferrari was a place people wanted to work after all?

modena

The boys before the falling out, first test of the 120 degree V6 engined 156 at Modena in April 1961. Phil Hill leans against the bosses Ferrari 250GT with Ferrari to his right. Richie Ginther in the car, leaning forward over the front of the car is Luigi Bazzi, senior technician, the big guy to his left is Medardo Fantuzzi who built the car’s bodies. Chiti is in the suit jacket leaning over Richie and the fellow in the hat behind the car is Romulo Tavoni, team manager (Klemantaski)

In fact he survived rather well of course but trashed the 1962 season in the process.

Their simply was not the depth of engineering talent to turn the championship winning 156 of 1961 into something suitably evolved, a 156B if you will, in response to the much greater British threat of 1962. The Lotus 25 and 1.5 litre Coventry Climax FWMV and BRM P56 V8’s great examples of progress in big leaps over the winter of 1961/2 in the UK.

Volpi on the other hand was an adherent of another dictum; ‘The best way to make a bit of money in motor racing is to start with a lot of money…’ The Italian had just come into his inheritance and formed a racing team ‘Scuderia Serennisima di Venezia ‘Serenity of Venice’ team, to start churning through it. Mind you Volpi was not the big loser in the A.T.S. (ATS) mix as we shall see.

The Palace Revolution was good for quite a few who went on to bigger and better things; Carlo Chiti and Giotto Bizzarini to name two, and it rather created a wonderful opportunity for Mauro Forghieri to step up into the engineering vacuum created at Maranello. It was one he took with open arms influencing in a very positive sense the engineering direction, design and speed of Ferrari racing cars for a couple of decades or thereabouts. For Chiti, Tavoni and Bizzarini though ATS was a thoroughly forgettable experience- their 1963 was worse than Ferrari’s 1962.

Scuderia Serenissima raced customer Porsche and Maserati sports and GP cars but the young Italian Count wanted to become a manufacturer in his own right…

He wasn’t silly though, in terms of funding, he had the support of both a Bolivian tin billionaire, Jaime Ortiz Patino and Italian businessman/industrialist Giorgio Billi. Volpi hired Ferrari departees Carlo Chiti, Giotto Bizzarini, Romolo Tavoni and Girolamo Gardini to design, build, develop and race a sports and F1 car. These staffing choices were all excellent, however much the Ferrari 156 bombed in 1962, Chiti’s design won the 1961 title in Phil Hill’s hands.

Both Chiti and Bizzarini were also no-nonsense kind of folk; they were quick, efficient and ‘mucked in’-important attributes in a nascent business devoid of significant engineering and construction resources.

The Serennissima partners soon fell out over the project though, so the enterprise took on the ‘Automobili Turismo e Sport’ or ATS name. The team was based at Sasso Marconi near Potecchio Marconi, a depressed area south of Bologna. A place which the Serennisima partners thought would attract some government funds, such grants not ultimately forthcoming.

ats phil

Hill, Spa 9 June 1963. What to change next? ATS 100. No point wanting a quick engine change, at this stage of the cars development the engine was impossible to remove without removal by hacksaw or torch of a chassis tube or three (Getty)

The Lotus 25 made its debut at the Dutch Grand Prix in 1962, many of the F1 paddock’s designers were in the process of knocking together their version of a monocoque chassis somewhat in the Chapman idiom.

There was plenty of life in the multi-tubular spaceframe yet though. Ron Tauranac’s Brabhams won two GP’s in 1969 so equipped, it was only the bag tank regs of 1970 which rained on Ron’s spaceframe parade. Carlo worked away on a spaceframe chassis, key elements of which were a relatively long wheelbase and extreme lowness partially made possible by the use of a new Colotti T34 six-speed gearbox which was to be ‘underslung’ between the main upper and lower chassis members at the rear.

The chassis, to Chiti’s design, was assembled in Palermo by Aeronautica Sicula. It had conventional upper rocker and lower wishbones and inboard coil spring/damper units at the front and multi-link rear suspension comprising upper and lower wishbones and a single lower radius rod providing lateral location. Again coil spring/dampers were fitted with adjustable roll bars front and rear.

Uprights were cast magnesium and disc brakes outboard at the front, and inboard beside the transaxle at rear. This approach was advanced, it helped get the masses low in the frame contributing greatly to a low centre of gravity. The ‘box ended up being a problem in terms of its reliability and difficulties in changing gear ratios ‘in the field’ but of itself the design made sense in search of Mark Donohue’s ‘Unfair Advantage’.

The body was styled by Alfonso Galvani in collaboration with Chiti, Alfonso was ex-Stanguellini. Nye recounts that the ’…F1 chassis was assembled in a farmhouse standing on the new factory building site (Pontecchio Marconi) which the company had just acquired. When the the car was completed a wall had to be demolished to get it out!’

ats butt

Rear view of one of Baghetti’s ATS, alighting the car, at Spa. Rear suspension as per text, you can also see the top rockers and lower wishbones at the front. Body beautifully faired at the rear to aid airflow over the low rear deck, but you can see the messy, last minute nature of the above engine section caused by the need for late body changes as a consequence of adding in various additional chassis members to the frame as designed to get required levels of torsional rigidity. The engine could not be removed without ‘Louis The Torch’ to perform necessary surgery to said chassis members…(Getty)

The first chassis was completed by late 1962 and was powered by a new all alloy, quad cam, 2 valve, 4 Weber carbed 1494cc 90 degree V8. 190 bhp was claimed for the engine upon debut, the optimism of Ferrari dyno’s seemed shared by those of ATS! The engine built upon Chiti’s learnings at Ferrari, he was convinced the V8 route was the way to go to keep the package compact but obtain greater piston area to squeeze more power than had been possible with the various incarnations of the Ferrari V6 he knew so well.

The ATS people sought to ‘serve it up to Ferrari’ and on the face of it the car was a sensible mix of engineering choices, with a dash of innovation and was acclaimed upon its launch.

The first testing of the car was done on the roads near Pontecchio Marconi, with Teodoro Zeccoli ‘ starting from Pila St along straight stretches and muddy paths and on a straight stretch for 300 metres on the Porrettana under the curious gaze of passers by…’ only in Italy, bless em!

Roberto Businello and Mario Cabral, also like Zeccoli, Serenissima drivers, also drove the car in these sessions with alterations to spring/shocks early tweaks

ats engine

ATS 100, race debut Belgian GP, Spa 9 June 1963. Starting fron the rear is the dry sump tank, rear suspension as per text, note the inboard discs and calipers beside the Colotti transaxle. Note its ‘underslung’ between the main chassis members location; good for weight distribution but problematic in terms of ratio changes. Remember they did not have computer simulations to get the ratios right before arrival at the circuit, with a brand spankers new car ratio changes were a dead cert. Engine; Weber carbs, DOHC, 2 valve, twin plug, see the distributors driven off the end of each inlet camshaft (Getty)

Whilst Romulo Tavoni worked upon securing the services of 1961 World Champion Phil Hill, he did so on 8 January 1963 and that of 1961 prodigy, Giancarlo Baghetti, late of Ferrari, the new car was further tested before its unveiling at the Baglioni Hotel, Bologna on 15 December 1962.

Before the ATS 100 launch, by mid November 1962, the partners in the project had fallen out however…

Volpi was ‘rattled’ by the death of his good friend Ricardo Rodriguez in a Lotus 24 Climax during the Mexican Grand Prix weekend and was questioning whether the firm should be involved in racing. Volpi made these pronouncements to the press and whilst he made it clear he had partners whose views he had to consider, fissures between the parties were opening.

Billi expressed the view that the nearly completed ATS 100 F1 car was important to promote the 2500 GT car. Others have observed that both Volpi and Billi wanted to be President but in the end Billi bought both Volpi and Patino out.

Billi’s woes were added to in buying out his business partner in a machinery manufacturing business which was the primary source of his wealth and then the failure of government financing or a grant to help establish Pontecchio Marconi facility.

At the cars launch in December Billi announced the name of the project as ‘Automobili Turismo e Sport’ (ATS) and at the same time, 30 November 1962 in fact, the return of the rights to the name and mark ‘Serenissima’ to Volpi.

2500-gts

The Baghetti/Frescobaldi ATS 2500 GTS before the start of Targa 1964. ATS 2500 GT/GTS. A mid-engined road car was being designed by Chiti before he left Ferrari to be powered by a V8. Ferrari built the V12 powered 250LM if you call it a road car! The 2500GT was Chiti’s concept finalised and launched at the 1963 Geneva Show. Engineering by Giotto Bizzarini and Carlo Chiti, styled by Bertone’s Franco Scaglione and built by Turin’s Serafino Allemano the cars had a multi-tubular spaceframe chassis, all independent suspension by wishbones and coil springs, disc brakes all round and a 2500cc all alloy 90 degree V8, the GTS a Colotti ‘box, weighed 750Kg and developed around 250bhp. 12 chassis were built but only 8 cars completed

Rather than focus exclusively on F1 the company was also developing a sports car, a project pushed by one of ‘The Maranello Eight’ Girolamo Gardini. Along the way Giotto Bizzarini left the company, ending up very soon thereafter at Iso, as he felt his views were not being listened to by Chiti.

This GT car was unveiled at the March 1963 Geneva Motor Show. The car was fitted with a 2467cc alloy 90 degree V8 giving circa 220/250bhp @ 7500rpm for the GT/GTS variants. As a consequence of the mixed priorities of the engineering team the F1 car lacked development and missed the early races in 1963, despite Billi announcing the planned debut of the ATS 100 at the Syracuse GP in April..

Testing progressed at Modena and Monza in April with Baghetti and Jack Fairmanwho had been recommended to ATS by Dunlop’s Dick Jeffrey. Issues included ignition, gearbox and rear suspension, although the wonderful if unusually translated Lazzari  ATS book does not make clear the precise nature of the issues. In the weeks before Monaco Phil Hill returned to the factory to test the car but the Monaco date was also missed.

ats-launch

ATS 100 upon its debut on 15 December 1962. As initially raced the car looked quite different as a result of testing changes, cohesive nature of the design was received to optimistic critical acclaim, especially in Italy! (unattributed)

Belgian GP 1963, ATS 100 debut, June 1963…

Whilst the cars were not race ready Billi insisted, it was his money after all, that the cars contest the Belgian GP at Spa.

The majestic Ardennes circuit is one of the toughest on both engines and of high speed handling so it was a supreme test of an under-developed new car. During that weekend Tony Settember’s Scirocco-BRM was also making its debut.

The ATS boys missed first Friday practice, with Tavoni reporting to Denis Jenkinson that the team transporter was delayed on the road.

As the second session neared its end with Brabham setting the pace in his Brabham BT7 Climax, the ATS team arrived on the other side of the pits and unloaded the cars in time for two exploratory laps for both Hill and Baghetti.

Denis Jenkinson’s Belgian GP report says after Saturday practice that ‘Phil Hill (was) being delighted, if not surprised by, the handling and roadholding but feeling he needed more bhp as the rpm would fall off peak all too easily’.There were whole seconds of difference in performance between the front runners let alone Baghetti and poor Phil, whose best lap was 11.6 seconds slower than pole, he was 17th and Baghetti 20th on the grid.

During the race Phil could sense a problem early, due to lack of heat in his cars cockpit, which indicated to him the cooling water was not circulating forwards to the radiator, he stopped to have a vapour lock diagnosed and rectified. But he was still not happy as the single throttle return spring was broken and the pedal was not returning rapidly. Then the car coasted to a halt, the gearbox had silently broken. The race was won by Clark’s Lotus 25 with Hill retiring on lap 17 and Baghetti who also had gearbox problems on lap 7. Lack of proper testing miles was already indicating the new gearbox was an ongoing weakness.

ats

ATS 100 1963, cutaway drawing and profile shot, specifications as per text (unattributed)

Whilst Jenkinson’s report didn’t comment on the engineering of the cars Nye writes ‘ The two cars presented…were a disgrace, with ill-fitting unfinished body panels, looking as if they had been sprayed from a spud gun, while the hastily installed engines were actually imprisoned by welded on additional chassis stiffening tubes which would have to be sawed through to permit engine removal…’ The Colotti designed inboard mounted gearboxes and carburetion were weak points as identified by Hill.

ats spa 1

Hill, ATS 100, Spa 1963 (Getty)

These sort of problems should not have been present given the six months between unveiling of the well finished prototype and the Belgian GP. There seems little doubt that the distraction of the GT car and management problems caused in part by the departure of two of the projects original partners resulted in the company/team not being well run on a day to day basis. Billi’s other equipment manufacturing business occupied most of his time.

The differences in appearance of the car between its launch and appearance at Spa are due, according to Lazzari’s book ‘to a hump between the driver, built to cover a new part of the chassis. This comprises tubular members to increase the rigidity of the crib of the motor. The additional tube had been settled on the existing chassis, so that it resulted (in being) impossible to remove the propeller (engine) without resorting to the oxy-hydrogen flame, whilst waiting to prepare a definitive version (of the chassis) endowed with a system of bolts’! I’m sure the Italian text is eloquent but the translation is amusing, to say the least. ‘The bodywork has been shortened and strengthened just before the steering wheel; in that zone an additional (fuel) tank has been inserted’.

ats spa

Top; Hill at the top of Raidillon, botton pitlane, body as per text, note Dunlop knock on magnesium wheels, Spa 1963 (Getty)

The team attended the Dutch GP  two weeks later on 23 June…

It was at Zandvoort in 1962 that Colin Chapman produced his ‘monocoque’ bombshell into Grand Prix racing. Clark lead the race until clutch trouble intervened, he proceeded to dominate the event in 1963, winning from pole, the Lotus 25 had none of the reliability issues in 1963 which prevented Colin Chapman and his merry men winning the title the previous year.

Denis Jenkinson reported on the progress made at Bologna ‘The A.T.S. team had tidied up the bodywork of their cars since Spa, but they were still not very elegant, and the tubular structure over the engines had been cut and jointed with threaded muff-joints that would have done credit to a plumber! Similar joints had been incorporated in one of the cross-members above the gearbox/axle assembly. Phil Hill’s car had the four exhaust pipes on each bank fed into single tail pipes and Baghetti’s car had separate pipes from each cylinder, ending in small megaphones’.

As practice got underway on the Friday  the ATS team were soon in strife with Jenkinson reporting that Baghetti’s car broke a distributor and developed a fault in the brake master-cylinder and ‘Phil Hill was not in the running’.

baghetti-dutch-gp

Giancarlo Baghetti’s ATS 100, Zandvoort 1963, shot shows pretty lines of the car and evolution of the bodywork since Spa. Note rear brake duct to inboard disc (Schlegelmilch)

‘The opening lap ended with Clark leading Graham Hill and McLaren, but the Cooper driver was waving Brabham by into third place, as his gearbox had gone wrong again and he had only 5th and 6th gears available. Sure enough he pulled into the pits at the end of the second lap and his mechanics took the gearbox selector mechanism apart. On lap 3 there was a semblance of order, Clark always in front, hotly pursued by Graham Hill and Brabham, but the BRM engine was running a high water temperature. In fourth place was Maggs in the second Cooper and after a short pause came a truly impressive crowd of cars getting involved in some pretty serious motor racing in the best tradition. This included Ginther (BRM), Surtees (Ferrari), Bonnier (Cooper), Amon (Lola), Phil Hill (ATS), Ireland (BRP), Taylor (Lotus), Scarfiotti (Ferrari), and Gurney (Brabham), the rest of the runners being spaced out behind’.

Baghetti retired with ignition trouble on his ATS on lap 16 the other car went out in a cloud of sand as Phil Hill spun off the road due to the left-hand rear axle stub breaking off.

Jenkinson concluded his race report thus ‘As at Spa, Clark had led from the first corner to the chequered flag, the Lotus Climax V8 performing perfectly in the sort of race that must soon label Jimmy Clark as a second Stirling Moss. Not as fast, but equally praiseworthy was the performance of Dan Gurney, who started last, had a pit-stop and yet finished second.’

ATS then sensibly missed the French and British GP’s won by Clark to get some sort of resolved specification and levels of base line preparation and reliability to the two cars prior to their home event, the Italian GP at Monza on September 8th.

ats dutch

Hill Dutch GP 1963, ATS 100 (Getty)

Looked at objectively the choice of the drivers to join ATS makes complete sense.

The engineering team were ex-Ferrari and won a title in 1961, financial backing was solid. It made sense to jojn a team comprised of senior people Phil and Giancarlo knew well, and had won races with in ’61. Phil’s Ferrari history of course went way back to his days driving Ferrari customer sportscars for team owners in the ‘States.

By the Nurburgring in 1963 they must have wondered what the hell they had gotten themselves into! The team truck did not make it to the Eifel Mountains mind you, it crashed en-route, so the cars did not start, nothing was going right! Next the Italian GP.

ats-hill-monza

Car quite beautiful in profile with its all enveloping, evolved bodywork and discs over the Dunlop alloys to eke out a few more rpm on Monza’s long straights. Phil Hill, Italian GP ’63 (Getty)

Off to Monza it was important for all the obvious reasons they do well; the cars did finish with Hill 11th and Baghetti 15th. The little red single-seaters were also looking like GP cars rather than lash-ups, better finished with neat enveloping bodywork and drag reducing wheel fairing discs fitted for the usual high speed Monza slipstreaming.

Jenkinson observed ‘The Bolognese cars were looking a lot tidier and clearly the design is becoming settled and parts are being made in a more permanent manner. Carburettors are still used although experiments have been carried out with Lucas fuel injection, and the rubber-ring universals in the drive shafts were replaced by normal Hardy Spicer joints.

During practice Phil was going better, at one point matching Brabham’s times, with Denis noting he was amongst the preofessional teams such as B.R.P. and Parnell. Baghetti only made the cut after Cabral, in front of him on times, withdrew after some pursuasion was applied!

Hill raced in company with Siffert and Jim Hall but began to lose ground, then pitted for fuel, the difficulty of topping up clear in the photo earlier in the article. Fuel was slopped into the cockpit in the process adding to Phil’s woes. Baghetti had pitted with electrical dramas but both were still in the race and running getting valuable race miles.

Clark won the race and the titles for he and Lotus with wins at Zandvoort, Spa, Reims, Silverstone and Monza. Progress was being made at ATS, it seemed.

phil-ats-injection

Phil Hill looking hopefully over his shoulder at the experimental Lucas injected variant of the little ATS V8, Watkins Glen 1963 (Lyons)

No doubt it was with some trepidation that the little team from Bologna loaded its car up for the ‘away races’ at Watkins Glen and Mexico City on 6 October and 27 October respectively…

As Jenkinson looked at the cars in the upstate New York paddock he observed that whilst Baghetti’s car was of  the same specifications as at Monza Hills had been quite heavily modified, ‘…the gearbox (was) now behind the axle. This had been done by turning the whole gearbox axle unit around and putting a spacer between the engine and axle to keep the wheelbase the same without moving the engine back. Both cars had a short radius arm from the top link to the chassis halfway along the engine. This radius rod was approximately half the length of the lower one, and was as used at Monza’.

Hill, Clark and Surtees were soon down to quick times with plenty of drams in the ATS pits, the meeting had started badly when an oil plug blew out of a scavenge pump coating the circuit with oil. ‘What was wrong at ATS was not easily definable as the mechanics were tearing both cars to pieces. In Hill’s car they rather foolishy fitted the experimental injection engine for the next day…The injection ATS engine was losing a lot of oil and Hill said he had no power at the top end, which was disappointing after the way he went the day before with the carburettor engine’, said Jenkinson.

Hill’s car started the race, as did Baghetti’s with the carburettor engine, the two BRM”s initially led from Surtees and Gurney. Baghetti’s ATS completed half a lap and retired with a broken oil pump. As Brabham moved into second place behind G Hill’s BRM his namesake retired from the race, again with a broken oil pump. Hill and Surtees diced for the lead at the 30 lap mark, with Surtees seemingly in command of the race, then his engine started to lose power leaving the win to Graham Hill’s BRM P578.

bag-belgium-cockpit

ATS 100 cockpit shot, Spa 1963, Baghetti up. Rough as guts body clear, as is radiator pipe to engine and Veglia Borletti instruments (GP Library)

Mexican Grand Prix…

Jim Clark ran away from pole and hid, his Lotus 25 won the race by a minute and a half from Brabham’s BT7 Climax and the BRM twins Hill G and Ginther in BRM P578’s.

It was the first championship GP in Mexico, a non-championship event was run the prior year. The high altitude of Mexico City, 7400 feet above sea level, always played havoc with the fuel systems/mixture of the cars back then, another variable for the poor over-worked ATS technicians to deal with! Jenkinson observed ‘Last year when all the entries were on carburettors (the ’62 non-championship GP) it was fairly simple to change jets until by a ‘suck it and see’ method a correct mixture was determined. This year, most cars were using fuel injection and to weaken the mixture it was necessary to reshape the metering cam…’

Between the ‘Glen and Mexico ‘The two engines had been sent back to Italy and arrived on the eve of practice, necessitating a night session before practice for the whole team. The engine fitting was made more difficult by the fact that a tremendous thunderstorm had cut off the electricity and the whole job had to be performed by torch and headlights’, MotorSport reported. ‘All a great pity as the race report starts by complimenting the organisers on the 600 acre sports arena in which the circuit is located, particularly the pits facilities and lockable pit garages themselves. Not a lot of use without power mind you! The two chassis were as at Watkins Glen.

The weekend went from bad to worse for ATS. In the first session Hill’s car was not revving very well but changing the jets improved things albeit when the engine did rev it sprayed Phil with hot oil from the breather. After few laps for which no times were given, Hills car was moved away to be worked on, soonish Baghetti’s car also followed with oil circulation troubles. Clark was setting the pace, just for something different!

The ATS boys did another all-nighter ‘…tearing the cars to pieces. They found that in the few laps Hill had done the bearings were beginning to break up. The same trouble was found on Giancarlo’s ATS. After Monza two extra scavenge pumps were fitted because excess oil in the sump was losing power. The sump was also dropped 8mm. Since this modification was done there had been consistent trouble with bearings and oil pressure pumps. Overnight the two extra pumps were removed in the hope that the cars would keep going’.

The ATS was sounding crisper on the Saturday morning but Hill was now having gear selection problems, having to jiggle the lever between 3rd and 2nd…

mexico

Phil Hill’s car in the Mexican GP pits 1963, dramas as per text (Friedman)

The ATS’ both took the start but as Clark lead Baghetti’s car was misfiring visiting the pits on lap 3 and again on lap 8 when it was pushed into the paddock for attention. He retired on lap 11 having been told he could not return to the race after going to the paddock.

In the meantime Phil’s car popped and banged its way around the track, the poor ATS mechanics had been dealing with much more fundamental engineering issues and had simply run out of time to get the mixtures right for Mexico’s altitude challenges. He didn’t appear for the 41st lap, a lower rear wishbone mount broke away from the chassis, a similar problem to the one which outed him at Zandvoort.

The end to a weekend from hell for the team- the oil circulation problem seemed solved though given the large number of laps completed by Hill. Jim Clark won the race from Jack’s Brabham BT7, Ginther’s BRM P578 and Hill G’s similar BRM.

South African Grand Prix…

Two months after the Mexican round, the final event of the 1963 World Championship was held at East London, on the south-east coast of the countries Eastern Cape province on 28 December. Jim Clark won the race in his Lotus 25 Climax, of course he and Lotus had wrapped up the drivers and manufacturers titles at Monza some months before.

The ATS team were amongst a group of cars not invited to the event. With the high cost of transporting drivers, cars and mechanics to South Africa, the R.A.C. of S.A. invited two cars from each of the main teams, with one European private entry, the rest all being local boys.

And with that, or more precisely the two cars that raced in Mexico City, the short life of ATS was effectively over.

baghetti-ats

15 December 1962, the ATS presentation at the Hotel Baglioni, Bologna. Romolo Tavoni shakes Giancarlo Baghetti’s hand in the drivers seat, ATS owner Giorgio Billi kneeling right. Twelve months later it was all over (unattributed)

The End of The Beginning…

Chiti had progressed design of a new car for 1964 which featured an overhung gearbox instead of the inboard Colotti type used in 1963.

At the end of 1963 the ATS project got into financial difficulties, Billi had over extended himself as outlined earlier. Patino and Billi opted for closure, but Volpi decided to pick up some of the assets. The GP project was shelved, several 2.5 litre mid-engined GT Coupes were built, two of which raced at the 1964 Targa Florio (ATS 2500 GTS Coupe-Baghetti/Frescobaldi DNF 3 laps ignition and Zeccoli/Gardi DNF 1 lap ignition) with the car building factory facilities split into three; a foundry doing contract work, a machine shop similarly contracting out and finally ATS Racing comprising the GP cars, components and spares.

Alf Francis and Vic Derrington formed a partnership to continue racing the two ATS cars.

One chassis ‘100-02’ was refashioned in the ilk of a Lotus 24 or Brabham BT3 with the wheelbase shortened by 6.5 inches, the Colotti box attached directly to the engine in conventional style. Componentry of the original chassis used comprised the front cross member, upper front wishbones and inboard springs, uprights, wheels and brakes. At the rear bits of the original car used included the uprights, wheels, brakes and Colotti box. Water was shifted between engine and front mounted radiator via the top left side frame tube, returning via an external pipe. The nose cowl was tidied up and the V8 engine developed over the winter, the focus its lubrication system and adaption of Lucas fuel injection. 200bhp @ 11000rpm was claimed.

The Derrington Francis ATS raced on into 1964 driven initially by Portuguese driver Mario Cabral. The plan was to run one car in GP racing and to develop the engine for sale to interested constructors, to build engines for future racing with a 3 litre version of the Grand Turismo engine already underway’ MotorSport reported in October 1964.

The car was reviewed very favourably but the development of ATS 100 chassis ‘02’ raced only once at Monza in 1964 where Cabral diced at the back of the field with Peter Revson and Maurice Trintignant before retiring on lap 24 with ignition problems.

John Surtees won the race in a Ferrari 158, on his way to the 1964 World Title. Resilient chap, that Ferrari…

cabral-derr-ats

Italian GP 1964. The #50 Derrington-Francis ATS with driver Mario Cabral in black and Alf Francis looking across the car from the nearside in short sleeved shirt, DNF lap 24 Q19. The other car is Maurice Trintignat’s BRM P578 DNF fuel injection. John Surtees won in a Ferrari 158 (unattributed)

The Serenissima Wheel Turns…

Volpi established his short lived Serenissima marque, with some of the assets acquired above, in the small town of Formigine, half way between Modena and Marnello.

The CEO and team manager was Nello Ugolini with Alf Francis as technical head and Bruce MacIntosh as chief mechanic. They decided to build a mid-engined, spaceframe chassis sportscar. The Jungla GT or 308V was first tested at Modena on December 20 1964. It was powered by a 3 litre 90 degree V8 designed by former Maserati engineer Alberto Massimino, he also designed the chassis.

It was this engine, which contrary to some views has no resemblance to the ATS V8 it was a clean sheet road car design according to Volpi, which McLaren used in F1 races in 1966. The ‘Tipo M166’ was a 2996cc all alloy 90 degree, DOHC, 2 valve, Weber carbed, 305 bhp @ 8500rpm engine which was fitted, personally by Bruce to his F1 McLaren M2B.  Bruce McLaren used it three times in his , click on the link at the end of this article to read about that episode, one of several engines Bruce used in 1966. Finally click here for an interesting article by racer Jonathon Williams who raced for Serenissima in the late 1960’s , its fascinating and fleshes out the end of this story in the nicest possible way; http://www.motorsportsmarketingresources.com/short-stories/jonathan-williams/serenissima.html

serennisima

Jonathon Williams and Alf Francis at Modena, Serenissima 3 litre V8 Coupe, circa 1968 (unattributed)

ATS Postscript…

The old adage, speaking again of such things, ‘If ‘Yer Aunty Had Balls She’d Be Yer Uncle’ springs to mind in relation to this venture. I think this saying is attributed to Frank Gardner but it’s a part of Australian vernacular, witty and pithy as Francis G was I don’t think he ‘owns’ that one.

Had ATS focussed on the GP car exclusively from December 1962 until when it should have first raced, pick a non-championship F1 event prior to the Monaco GP, rather than also building the very tasty 2500 GT/GTS, the problems with the ATS 100 engine and gearbox should have been sorted away from the harsh glaze of race weekends.

Maybe Chiti’s ATS first design should have been more conservative? Perhaps he should have foreseen the difficulties just getting a new engine right, the Colotti box however much it made conceptual sense was one step too far and these things always took time to get raceworthy, read competitive and reliable.

IF Volpi, and Billi and Patino stayed together as partners the venture would probably have continued, the combination of pockets and egos was deep.

IF Billi had not over extended himself buying out the other fellas- and his partner in his primary business he probably would have continued.

IF the government funds the venture sought to defray their capital costs were forthcoming the financial equation would have been stronger.

The ATS boys did not cover themselves in glory during 1963 but they are far from ‘the biggest F1 debut clusterfucks’ of all time. BAR springs to mind and all they did was build a chassis.  How bout Toyota too, how could so much money be wasted so fast by a company who knew a thing or three about motor-racing?

The scale of the ATS venture was heroic in terms of ‘taking on Ferrari’, how stupid it was to do that kind of posturing though? By building engines as well as chassis the ATS lads were not seeking to be mere garagistes but rather create something of enduring scale- a marque which produced wonderful road cars as well as racers. They were lofty but noble aims.

But of course none of that happened, so the design Chiti laid down for 1964 never saw the light of day and the whole venture went out with a whimper in the form of the Derrington-Francis ATS in the 1964 Italian Grand Prix.

Enzo and Laura Ferrari certainly had the last laugh!?

hill-ats

Phil Hill aboard his ATS 100 and simultaneously wondering what to change and what will go wrong next! Circuit unknown. Inboard front suspension as per text (unattributed)

ATS 100 Build…

The prototype car, ‘100-01’ was Phil Hill’s 1963 race chassis, it was sold to Tom Wheatcroft in 1970 and formed part of his Donington Collection until sold to Philip Walker in 1999.

Chassis ‘100-02’ was Baghetti’s race chassis in 1963 and built into the Derrington Francis ATS as described above, Walker also acquired this car in 1998/9. The MotorSport November 2000 article on which this paragraph is based states that ‘Philip has acquired a second chassis…’, which rather suggests, three, at least, chassis were built.

Bibliography…

‘The History of The Grand Prix’ Car Doug Nye, The GP Encyclopaedia, 8w.forix.com, ‘A.T.S. – The Team That Challenged Ferrari’ Michael Lazzari

Photo Credits…

Getty Images, The Cahier Archive, Pete Lyons, Rainer Schlegelmilch, Dave Friedman Archive

Tailpiece: Giancarlo Baghetti, ATS 100, Dutch GP, Zandvoort 23 June 1963…

baghetti-ats

 

 

 

 

 

image

Alfa Romeo publicity shot of Prince Albert and Princess Paola, Belgian Royals at Balocco, Alfa’s test circuit. The Prince is about to test the ultimately very successful Tipo 33, here in ‘Mugello Spyder’ 2 litre 1967 form…

Thanks to Claudy Schmitz for identifying both the Royal Couple and Balocco as the correct venue, the power of Facebook! Whilst the Princess was born of Italian Royal blood it would be interesting to know the circumstances of this ‘test’ drive, the car definitely too small for their family of five!

Alfa’s first mid-engined racer made its competition debut at the Fleron Hillclimb in Belgium on 12 March 1967, factory test pilot Teodoro Zeccoli took a win from some stiff competition.

image

Zeccoli at the Belgian Fleron Hillclimb upon the T33 ‘Periscopica’ debut meeting. Alfa 2600 Berlina behind. Fleron is in the Province of Liege, location appears very industrial, power station in the background. (Unattributed)

The 33 made its race debut at Sebring that summer on the weekend of 1 April. Andrea De Adamich led the 12 Hour event’s first lap but both cars entered retired with suspension and overheating dramas.

Here are some shots of the cars in the Sebring paddock; #65 is DeAdamich/Zeccoli, #66 Roberto Businello/Nanni Galli. The race was won by the factory Ford Mk4 of Bruce McLaren and Mario Andretti.

I covered the 1967 Endurance Season in some detail in an article i wrote a while back about Ferrari P4/CanAm350 ‘0858’ which may be of interest to some of you;

https://primotipo.com/2015/04/02/ferrari-p4canam-350-0858/

33 1

(Paolo Devodier)

 

33 2

The more you look the more you see, Sebring. DeAdamich/Zeccoli T33. Engine, 2 coils, behind the engine the circular vertical ducts which take cool air to the inboard discs when the body is lowered into position. Rear chassis diaphragm and coil spring/dampers, inboard Girling discs, oil tank to left of 6 speed Alfa ‘box, battery to its right. Build quality clear. (Paolo Devodier)

 

33 3

Those beautiful Alfa mag alloy wheels, filler for centrally located fuel tanks, spare had to be carried under the regs of the time, front of cast magnesium chassis extension houses front mounted radiator. You can just see the nearside suspension ‘top hat’ and adjustable roll bar going forward and mounting at its outer end. (Paolo Devodier)

 

33 4

Engine change in the Sebring ’67 garage. ‘Periscopica’ 2 litre T33 all alloy, Lucas injected, DOHC chain driven 2 valve V8 engine developed a claimed 260-270bhp @ 9500rpm. (Paolo Devodier)

Four cars were entered at the Targa Florio in 1967

All failed to finish due to suspension problems (De Adamich/Jean Rolland Bonnier/Baghetti) and a minor accident involving the Geki Russo/Nino Todaro. The race was won by the Porsche 910 of Paul Hawkins and Rolf Stommelen.

image

Targa Florio 1967. The Bonnier/Baghetti T33 ahead of the other factory cars…Periscopica clear to see. Love the ‘period’ hand-painted numbers. (Unattributed)

 

bonnier baghetti alsfa

Jo Bonnier in the T33 he shared with Giancarlo Baghetti during Targa 1967. (Unattributed)

 

33 5

T33 cockpit shot at ’67 Targa. LHD unusual in sports cars, Alfa would later change to the ‘norm’. ‘Momo’ steering wheel, Veglia instruments, change for 6 speed box all clear, lots of instruments for the driver to monitor. Not sure which chassis this is, or the T33 in front, you can just see the tail of the Scuderia Filipinetti Ferrari P3/412P ahead.(Rainer Schlegelmilch)

Nani Galli and Andrea De Adamich finally broke through for the team at the Nurburgring, they finished 5th in the 1000Km behind 4 Porsche 910’s.

The winning Porsche 910 was driven by the combination of Joe Buzzetta and Udo Schutz. The De Adamich/Galli T33 had another suspension failure on lap 18, but they shared the other car driven by Businello/Zeccoli, the four drivers getting the joy of the cars first race finish.

33 6

Autodelta SpA lineup in the Nurburgring pitlane, 28 May 1967. #20 DeAdamich/Galli (DNF suspension) #21 Russo/Baghetti (DNF ‘box) and #22 fifth place car of Businello/Zeccoli/DeAdamich/Galli. (Accursio Cassarino)

 

33 8

Andrea DeAdamich in the T33 he shared with Nanni Galli, the Italian duo DNF with suspension failure, then hopped into the # 22 surviving car for 5th place. (Unattributed)

 

nurb

The ‘pre-owned’ T33 of de Adamich/Galli during Nurburgring practice 28 May 1967 (Rainer Schlegelmilch)

The ‘Periscopica’s’ final start for 1967 was the Circuit of Mugello in July, 8 laps of a tough 66Km road circuit.

Udo Schutz and Gerhard Mitter won the race tailor made for the fast, light but tough Porsche 910. A privately entered GTA was the best place Alfa in 7th, the three Autodelta T33’s of DeAdamich/Galli, Lucien Bianchi/Giunti and Colin Davis/Spartaco Dini all failed to finish.

33 9

Ignazio Giunti with tyre problems at Mugello. (unattributed)

It had been a patchy start but the Tipo 33 continually evolved over the following decade ultimately winning many races, sometimes not against the strongest of opposition, but ultimately winning the World Championship of Makes in 1975 and 1977.

33 10

Alfa Romeo won the World Sportscar Championship in 1975 and 1977. Pictured here is the 1977 Alfa 33 SC12 driven by Spartaco Dini at Enna-Pergusa in June. The car used a spaceframe chassis (Alfa used both spaceframes and monocoques during the models long life and evolution) and a 2.1 litre fuel injected, twin turbo 4 valve V12 producing circa 640bhp. Dini practiced the car but did not start, this car driven by Francia/Merzario DISQ for a startline infringement, Art won in another SC12. (Accursio Cassarino)

The T33 in its original guise had an unusual chassis design.

The main structure comprised two longitudinal aluminium spars to which was mounted a complex magnesium casting at the front, the front suspension mounted to it. At the rear the spars had a fabricated sheet metal saddle to which the suspension was attached.

The suspension itself was conventional for the period; upper and lower wishbones and coil spring/ damper units and single top link, inverted lower wishbone and twin radius rods, coil spring/ dampers at the rear. Adjustable sway bars fitted of course. Uprights were cast magnesium, steering rack and pinion with Girling disc brakes front and rear. Weight 580Kg.

image

This shot shows the main elements of the chassis referred to in the text; 2 longitudinal spars and cast magnesium frame at the front to which the suspension was mounted. (Vic Berris)

The heart of the early T33’s was of course it’s superb little all alloy DOHC V8. Initially 2 litres (1995cc) and 2 valves per cylinder, the cams chain driven, the Lucas fuel injected engines power output was a claimed 260bhp @ 9500rpm, the gearbox Alfa’s own 6 speed transaxle.

The tall ram air intake gave the car it’s nickname ‘Periscopica’…

image

 

Etcetera…

Also see this article on the Alfa T33/3 4 litre Coupe i wrote a while back. https://primotipo.com/2014/05/15/when-im-in-a-car-i/

Chassis.

33 7

T33 ‘Periscopica’ chassis albeit upside down. The cast magnesium front bulkhead referred to in the text is clear to the right, the spars at the back (top of picture) accept the tubular rear ‘saddle’. (unattributed)

Photo and Other Credits…

Cutaway drawing of car Vic Berris, engine cutaway G Cavara, Claudy Schmitz, Paolo Devodier, Accursio Cassarino, Rainer Schlegelmilch, Facebook ‘Alfa Romeo 33 Sport Car’ Group

Tailpiece…

de ad nurb

Andrea de Adamich jumping the T33 he shared with Nanni Galli at the Nurburgring 1000Km in 1967 DNF (Rainer Schlegelmilch)

Finito…

baghetti lotus 49

Giancarlo Baghetti relaxes during the Italian Grand Prix weekend, he had a ‘one off’ drive of the Team Lotus spare ’49, backing up Jim Clark and Graham Hill…

He qualified well back on the grid, 17th, and retired on lap 50 whilst running 6th with an engine failure. John Surtees took a fabulous last corner win from Jack Brabham, winning Hondas’ first Grand Prix since Ginthers’ victory in the last race of the 1.5 Litre Formula in Mexico, 1965.

Baghettis’ career started with immense promise, famously winning his first championship Grand Prix, the French in a great dice with Dan Gurney (Porsche) in a Ferrari 156 in 1961….

Baghetti French GP 1961

The stone chips on the nose of Baghettis’ 156 bear witness to the closeness of the race, third place went to Jim Clarks’ Lotus 21 Climax. (sutton images)

French GP finish 1961

Toto Roche waves the chequered flag for Baghetti, winning a famous victory over Dan Gurneys’ Porsche 718, French GP Reims 1961, his championship race debut. (Unattributed)

Baghetti started racing in 1956 in an Alfa Romeo 1900Ti and built a solid reputation as he moved into Formula Junior in 1959. In early 1961 he was selected to drive for the Italian FISA team, an organization formed to promote young Italian drivers by entering them in Non-Championship Grands’ Prix.

FISA struck a deal with Scuderia Ferrari to run a 1960 F2 Ferrari Dino 156 (in effect the prototype of the 1961 F1 car) in the first non-championship races of 1961. The results were amazing, Baghetti, not necessarily the best credentialled candidate won on his GP debut in Syracuse in front of Gurney, Surtees, G Hill, Brabham, Moss, Salvadori, Ireland and Bandini.

syracuse GP baghetti

Giancarlo Baghetti ahead of Dan Gurney Syracuse GP April 1961. Ferrari Dino 156 from Porsche 718. The first of Giancarlos’ wins against stong opposition. (Unattributed)

He followed up with another win in the Napoli GP in May beating Ashmore, Lotus 18 Climax and Bandini Cooper T53 Maserati 2nd and 3rd as well as Roy Salvadori, Andre Pilette and Tim Parnell.

FISA persuaded Ferrari to hire them a 1961 ‘Shark Nose’ for their driver to make his championship GP debut at Reims, he was allocated the car which was to be driven by Equipe National Belge driver Olivier Gendebien, the car quickly repainted from yellow to red.

Phil Hill took pole from Ferrari teammates Von Trips and Ginther, Baghetti 12th fastest. The 3 works Ferrari’s disappeared at the start, only Moss managed to stay near them. Even a quick spin by Ginther dropped him behind the Lotus, but he was soon able to re-pass Moss such was the Ferraris’ power advantage.

Baghetti had made his way to the front of the chasing pack. When Moss was forced to pit with brake problems, the four Ferrari’s lead, this didn’t last as Von Trip’s engine died in the heat.

Hill spun on the melting road surface. The American lost over 2 laps as he tried to restart his hot engine. This left Ginther in the lead with Baghetti fighting the Porsches of Dan Gurney and Jo Bonnier to hold on to second place, a battle that became even more significant a couple of laps later as Ginther pulled off the track with no oil pressure.

Baghetti recounts the last laps …’It was a very hard race. It was hot. The asphalt was melting, the radiator was blocking up and I saw the temperature starting to soar. Luckily I was behind the two Porsches of Gurney and Bonnier and relied on getting a tow along the straights. What you must remember is that this was my first Grand Prix and both Gurney and Bonnier were trying to frighten me by running on either side of me, but I thought that if they could do things like that and get away with it, then I could do it too.

Three laps from the end Gurney and I were fighting for the lead and I realized that to finish first I needed to be in the perfect position to slipstream. Going into the last corner I was right behind Gurney so that as we came out I was on his tail. He sat right in the middle of the track because he obviously knew what I was going to try to do. I waited and when I saw him glance in his mirror when I was on his left, I quickly switched to the right and got past him to win the race.’

Giancarlo Baghetti became the first man in history to win his debut World Championship Grand Prix.

ferrari 156 cutaway

James Allingtons’ cutaway drawing of the 1960 Ferrari 156 F2 car, chassis ‘008’ the car used by Baghetti at Syracuse and Naples was the prototype 1960 car fitted with ’61 ‘Sharknose’ body. Multi-tubular spaceframe chassis, suspension by upper and lower wishbones front and rear. 1476cc 65 degree DOHC 2 valve Weber carbed V6, 185bhp@9200rpm. 5 speed ‘box. Later spec ’61 cars had the 120 degree V6 190bhp@9500rpm. (James Allington)

Baghetti qualified mid-grid for the British GP, spinning off the wet Aintree circuit during the race. For his home GP at Monza he qualified 6th, the other four Ferrari’s were faster. This was the day that von Trips was expected to win the world title, but it was not to be, ‘Taffy’ crashed to his death after contact with Clarks’ Lotus 21, the car flew into the crowd killing 11 spectators on lap two. Baghetti raced at the front until his engine blew on lap 14 and Phil Hill won the race to seal the first World Championship for an American driver. Giancarlo set the fastest lap.

His season ended with his 4th and last GP win, he took victory in a little known event to decide the ‘Prima Coppa Italia’ (Italian Championship for Drivers) at Vallelunga, Baghetti won the 2 heats in a Porsche 718 when his Ferrari was not available for the event. Lorenzo Bandini and Baghetti were tied for the Championship , this event was organised to decide the winner.

What a debut GP season!

ferrari 156 drawing

1961 spec Ferrari 156. (Scuderia Ferrari)

For 1962 Baghetti joined Phil Hill, the ’61 champion in the works Ferrari team (Rodriguez driving a third car occasionally). Enzo rested on his laurels thinking that the 156’s didn’t require evolution to continue their dominance but the Brits had caught up.

BRM, Lotus and Cooper produced cars to beat the Ferrari’s. Lotus debuted the epochal monocoque chassis Lotus 25 at Zandvoort and Coventry Climax produced their FWMV 1.5 V8 in quantities, the BRM team also built a V8, the Type 56 available to customers as well as the ‘works’ BRM P57’s. The British teams shortcomings in 1961 were their engines, the relatively old 1.5 litre variant of the Climax FPF not ‘man enough’ for Ferrari’s powerful V6. It was different in 1962 when their engine power was equivalent to their chassis mastery…

Baghetti scored points at Zandvoort and Monza, but Ferrari was in total turmoil and for 1963 he joined Hill in the mass exodus to Carlo Chiti’s ATS team, an unmitigated disaster for all involved, it effectively destroyed his F1 career. Baghetti drove Centro Sud’s old BRM P57 in 1964, he returned to race in F2, F3 and sports and touring cars, also making an annual apperance at the Italian GP, his last in the Lotus 49 in 1967.

baghetti spa

‘Hitchin a ride’: Baghettis’ BRM P57 gives Phil Hill and Bob Anderson a lift at the end of the 1964 Belgian GP, Spa. Giancarlo was 8th in the race won by Clarks’ Lotus 25 Climax. Hill raced a Cooper T73 Climax and Anderson a Brabham BT11 Climax (G Clayton)

baghetti brabham 65 italian

Brabham entered a third car for Giancarlo at the 1965 Italian GP. He qualified the BT7 Climax poorly in 19th, the engine failed on lap 12 in the race won by Stewarts’ BRM P261. (Unattributed)

baghetti targa 1965

Baghetti at the wheel of a factory Ferrari 275 P2 during Targa 1965, DNF with Jean Guichet. (Unattributed)

After a huge accident at Monza in a Ferrari Dino 166 F2 car in the ‘Monza Lottery GP’ in June 1968 he retired from driving, working as journalist and photographer. He succumbed to cancer in 1995 age 60.

No-one has ever repeated the feat…a quasi factory Ferrari drive on the results of a ‘journeyman’, won his first 3 GP’s, 4 for the year, one of them a championship event and then so rapidly disappeared from sight…

baghetti italian gp 1966

Baghetti at the wheel of a Ferrari Dino 246, Monza, Italian GP 1966. Q16, raced Spences’ Lotus for 5th until the car failed in the race won by Scarfiottis’ Ferrari 312. Car was lent to him by Scuderia after his Parnell  Lotus BRM failed in practice. (Unattributed)

Baghetti Ferrari 156 1962

Giancarlo Baghetti, Ferrari 156 1962. The class of the field in 1961 were at best also-rans in 1962. He is smiling so it must be at the seasons commencement… (Unattributed)

Photo and other Credits…

Mel Turbutt, motorsportretro.com, Sutton Images, James Allington, Scuderia Ferrari, The Auto Channel

Finito…