In our feature, http://www.velocetoday.com/a-touch-of-dantes-genius-the-junior-racers/ we stated that a Taraschi driven by Berardo Taraschi won the first ever Formula Junior event in 1958. Longtime reader and historian Aldo Zana took us to task on the subject, correcting our mistake (and his) and providing a number of great photos of that first F Jr. event as can be seen below. Editor
Story by Aldo Zana
While VeloceToday incorrectly stated that the first F Jr race was won by a Taraschi, in a follow up comment, this writer mixed up the first Formula Junior race in Italy with the fourth one, both on the Monza Autodromo, yet on different dates: April 25, 1958 “II Trofeo Felice Bonetto” within the “IV Trofeo Vigorelli”, and June 28-29, 1958 as the fourth and main round of the Italian Championship, also the opener of the Monza 500-Mile race for the “Trophy of Two Worlds”. The June race was named: “I Junior Cup” and that “first” is the origin of my mistake, one shared with some other historians. Taraschi car was the same and had the same racing number 6 in both events. We hope to set the record straight and at the same time correct or add to other statements made in the Formula Junior article of August 29.
The April race, i.e, the very first F. Junior race in Italy, was won by Roberto Lippi, Stanguellini, ahead of Berardo Taraschi on April 25, 1958.
The June race was on the Monza “bowl”, i.e. the hi-speed track with banked turns: 15 laps, 63.8 km including a chicane on the main straight (like in April). The race was ran clockwise, as usual, while the 500-Mile was counter-clockwise. The winner was Nobile (Stanguellini) in 25’16”6, 151.335 kph, ahead of Roberto Lippi (Bardhal Stanguellini – same car and racing number as in April) and Gastone Zanarotti (Stanguelllini). Taraschi was forced out in a multiple collision at the chicane.
The Nibbio I record car by Count Giovanni Lurani in the 1935 version. Lurani won four Class I (500 cc) records on the Firenze-Mare motorway on November 15, 1935 including the flying km at 162.162 kph, 26 kph higher than the existing record. Total dry weight of the car: 290 kg. The photo has a dedication to Piero Facetti, the mechanic-tuner-builder of the Lurani cars. Facetti is the first on the right, alongside Lurani. (Aldo Zana collection).
The Nibbio I as presented at the 2017 Villa d’Este Concours d’Elegance. It won the main award, the Gold Cup. The entrant was Federico Gottsche-Bebert, grandson of Giovanni Lurani, first on the left. (Aldo Zana)
The start of the April 25, 1958 F. Junior race at Monza. In the first row: no. 6 Berardo Taraschi (Taraschi “streamliner”); no. 18 Roberto Lippi (Stanguellini); no. 4 Luigi Alberti (Stanguellini) pole. (Andrea Curami collection)
The Taraschi “streamliner” in the Monza garages in April 1958. The car was a Sport of the 1956 season yet with the new Fiat 1100 engine according to the F. Junior rules. The car was the fastest in the April race: it was timed at 174.428 kph on the speed trap before the Parabolica turn. The same car with the same racing number was also entered in the June race. (Andrea Curami collection).
Two images of Berardo Taraschi at the wheel of his F. Junior car in the 1960 season. The Fiat engine reached 90 CV @ 6.200 rpm. Taraschi won six F. Junior races that season. (Taraschi family collection).
The Stanguellini of the Scuderia Bardhal, Florence, driven by Roberto Lippi in the April 25, 1958 Monza race. He won ahead of Berardo Taraschi. The car was a former Formula 750 car with a Fiat 1100 engine. It was also entered in the June race. (Andrea Curami collection).
The Foglietti F. Junior 1958 designed by Giorgio Valentini (1928-2012). The clean lines of the body recalls the Lotus 16. It was a very innovative car when compared to other Italian Fiat-engined F. Juniors. The engine cover opened in a “book-like” way and also gave easier access to the cockpit. Valentini was later (1965) the designer of the BWA F3 single-seater series with Cosworth engines. (Valentini family-Aisa collection)
The Valentini-designed F. Junior 1958 Foglietti in a test on the Monza Autodromo. It was the first racing car designed by Valentini for Ernesto Foglietti. Of the three units buit, one was written off in a track incident. (Valentini family – Aisa collection)
The chicane on the Monza main straight for the April 25, 1958 race: 12 laps, 69 km. Roberto Lippi (Stanguellini) won in 30’12”4, 137.055 kph. Taraschi came home in second and Carlo Coppo (Volpini) finished third. (Andrea Curami collection).
The 1960 Stanguellini Formula Junior promotional leaflet: a four-pager with the list of wins on the back page. (Giovanni Bossi collection).