CONSTRUCTORS: FERRARI (SCUDERIA FERRARI)

Name: Ferrari (Scuderia Ferrari)

Kimi Raikkonen, Brazilian GP 2007

Kimi Raikkonen, Brazilian GP 2007 

 © The Cahier Archive

Enzo Ferrari came from a well-to-do Modena family which ran a metal-working business. The family had sufficient money to own an automobile when Enzo was still a toddler and cars were rare. Enzo saw his first motor race when he was 10 years old when his father took him and his brother Dino to a race around the streets of the nearby city of Bologna, and this sparked his interest in the sport.

After World War I Ferrari decided that he wanted to become a racing driver with the FIAT company. After failing to get a job he hung around Turin, met some of the FIAT racing people and found a job as a handyman with a car dealer, driving ex-military trucks south to be refitted and sold as automobiles. Eventually he found a job with the CMN car company thanks to his friendship with Ugo Sivocco, whom he had met in Turin. Ferrari took part in his first motor race in October 1919 on a hillclimb in Parma, at the wheel of a CMN. His showing was sufficiently promising for an entry to be made on the Targa Florio. He then went through a period as a driver of an Isotta-Fraschini and then popped up as the owner and driver of an exotic (and very expensive) Alfa Romeo sportscar. In October 1920 he talked his way into the Alfa Romeo team for the Targa Florio, alongside Giuseppe Campari. A few months later he convinced Sivocco to join Alfa Romeo. While racing he also established an Alfa Romeo dealership in Modena. Ferrari raced on and off for Alfa Romeo for the next few years but built up his influence in the racing department by convincing others to join the team, notably FIAT engineer Luigi Bazzi. By then Alfa Romeo had produced its first Grand Prix car - the P1. It was a disaster. Sivocco crashed one at Monza and was killed.

Bazzi suggested that the company hire another FIAT engineer called Vittorio Jano to develop the car. The result was the Alfa Romeo P2 which was an immediate success in 1924 but in July 1925 the company withdrew after its lead driver Antonio Ascari was killed during the French Grand Prix. Jano's P2s were locked away. Enzo Ferrari continued to run his businesses and raced on occasion. In 1929 Alfredo Caniato and Mario Tadini and others agreed to fund the establishment of a racing team which Ferrari would run for them, preparing Alfa Romeo cars. With the money they supplied he was able to hire Campari and the team began to grow. When Alfa Romeo decided that it wanted Campari back, Ferrari did a deal to get his hands on one of Jano's P2s and hired a young Tazio Nuvolari to drive it.

Success led to expansion and the team took on rising stars Baconin Borzacchini and Luigi Arcangeli and as the 1930 season progressed Scuderia Ferrari increasingly became seen as the Alfa Romeo factory team . At the end of 1932, as Jano was preparing a new P3 racer, Alfa Romeo decided to withdraw from racing again. Ferrari tried to get his hands on the P3s but was refused. As rivals Maserati and Bugatti had better machinery Ferrari lost all his top drivers as the team struggled on with old Alfas. Eventually Alfa Romeo management relented and the P3s were delivered to Modena. Bazzi and Alfa test driver Attilio Marinoni left Alfa Romeo to join the Scuderia and Ferrari hired Luigi Fagioli and the veteran Campari to be his drivers. The team was immediately successful but at Monza in September Campari was killed in one of the cars. The same accident claimed the life of former Ferrari driver Borzacchini.

At the end of the year Alfa Romeo handed over the entire racing department to Ferrari. He hired Achille Varzi , Louis Chiron and Carlo Trossi (a partner in the team) with Algerians Guy Moll and Marcel Lehoux as second string drivers. The rise of the German manufacturers would make it increasingly difficult for Ferrari to compete at Grand Prix level. Moll won at Monaco that year but was killed a few months later at Pescara. At the end of the year Varzi left to join AutoUnion. Ferrari managed to convince Nuvolari to return and hired Rene Dreyfus to be his partner alongside Chiron. That year Nuvolari scored a famous and outstanding victory against the Germans at the Nurburgring in the old Alfa Romeo P3.

It was clear, however, that the Italians could not compete with the Germans and in 1936 Chiron moved to Mercedes-Benz and Dreyfus to Talbot. Nuvolari remained and was joined by a new rising star called Nino Farina. The modified Alfas were still not competitive and that year the company appointed Wifredo Ricart to see what could be done to improve the performance of the cars. Ricart and Ferrari went to war against one another and this resulted in the Spring of 1937 in Alfa Romeo buying 70% of Scuderia Ferrari. The battle for power continued with Ferrari and Alfa working on parallel designs. Ferrari's crew produced a car which would later become known as the Alfa Romeo 158 (known as the Alfetta). The Alfa Romeo factory developed their own ideas and Nuvolari was so disappointed that he decided to join Auto Union. Alfa Romeo fired Jano and the company announced that the racing department was being relocated to Turin.

The little team continued to work on the development of the Alfettas but soon all activities were rendered irrelevant by the outbreak of World War II, although Ferrari was officially fired by Alfa Romeo at the end of 1939. Ferrari used some of the money he had been paid to establish a machine shop called Auto Avio Costruzione and began producing parts for aircraft engines. During the war years Ferrari acquired land at Maranello, outside Modena, to build a new factory away from the bombing raids.

With the war over and Alfa Romeo's factories in ruins, Enzo Ferrari decided that he would go it alone and build his own racing cars. Bazzi and Gioacchino Colombo joined him. Colombo designed a new V12 engine and a car called the Ferrari 125. Soon afterwards Colombo was ordered back to Alfa Romeo.

But development of the engine continued and finally the new Ferrari 125s were ready to compete. Veteran Franco Cortese raced the first Ferrari at an event in Piacenza in May 1947. The car was leading when it broke down. Two weeks later Cortese raced the car at Caracalla in Rome and won. The opposition was weak. The engine was reworked and stretched to 1.9-liters and the cars were redesignated 159s but they were still difficult to handle and Bazzi himself crashed one and broke his leg. One was entered for a race in Turin and Raymond Sommer gave Ferrari an important victory, although the opposition was still only mediocre. The result was that Ferrari was able to rehire both Colombo and a youngster called Aurelio Lampredi who had previously left Ferrari to join Isotta-Fraschini. The success also attracted a number of wealthy potential customers for Ferrari racing machinery.

Colombo worked to improve the 125 while Lampredi designed the 166 which was to be made available for customers. Luigi Chinetti established a Ferrari showroom in New York and the company went into business. The company's first major victory came on the Mille Miglia in 1948 with Clemente Biondetti.

Alfa Romeo was reviving quickly and when Ferrari and Alfa went head to head for the first time in the autumn of 1948 in Turin it was Jean-Pierre Wimille's Alfa Romeo which won.

But at the start of 1949 Alfa Romeo decided not to take part in Grand Prix races. Maserati too dropped out and so Ferrari was able to hire Alberto Ascari and Gigi Villoresi, the best drivers of the day. Ferraris became regular winners while, in sportscar racing, Chinetti and Lord Selsdon combined to win the Le Mans 24 Hours for Ferrari (Chinetti doing 22 hours of driving).

The new World Championship beckoned in 1950 and Alfa Romeo once again changed its policy and re-entered Grand Prix racing. The Alfas dominated the 1950 season, winning 11 events in 11 outings. At the end of the year Colombo left Ferrari as Lampredi's V12 project was favored by Ferrari. But Ferrari was selling road cars and the company was doing well and in the 1951 season the team finally broke the Alfa Romeo monopoly in F1 with Froilan Gonzalez's victory at Silverstone. Ferrari also won the Mille Miglia but on that event Ascari crashed into a crowd killing a local doctor and the company was dragged into a lengthy legal action with the Italian authorities.

At the end of the year Alfa Romeo withdrew from F1 again, leaving the World Championship in disarray. It was decided to adopt F2 regulations. This was good news for Ferrari who had competitive cars for the new formula. Lampredi reworked the cars and produced the Ferrari 500.

Farina and Piero Taruffi joined Ascari and (apart from the Indianapolis 500) the team won every Grand Prix of the year with Ascari collecting six consecutive victories and the Championship. The following year Ascari and Farina were joined by Villoresi (who was out of action for much of 1952) and by British rising star Mike Hawthorn. Ascari won five races and a second World title. Hawthorn and Farina won one race apiece. It was not until the end of the year that Juan-Manuel Fangio in a Maserati was finally able to beat Ferrari, in Italy.

The new 2.5-liter formula was introduced in 1954 and Ferrari stretched the 2-liter engine and designated the new car the 625. The car was not competitive against the new Maserati 250F. Gonzalez won the British GP and Hawthorn in Spain but otherwise Fangio dominated. The following year the Argentine driver switched to the new Mercedes-Benz team and Ferrari won only one event, Monaco, with driver Maurice Trintignant.

In the course of 1955 Lancia ran Jano-designed D50 chassis, but the team ran out of money and Ferrari offered to buy the cars and Jano. Fangio was hired to drive in 1956 alongside rising British star Peter Collins and Eugenio Castellotti. The team returned to its winning ways with Fangio winning three times and Collins twice, the Englishman eventually handing his car over to Fangio in the final race. Away from the race tracks, it was a sad year as Ferrari's son Dino died.

Fangio moved on to Maserati at the end of the year leaving Collins to partner Mike Hawthorn and Luigi Musso. The Lancias were getting old, the British teams were becoming stronger and Ferrari failed to win a race in 1957. It was a bad year for the team as Castellotti was killed while testing and the Marquis de Portago crashed a Ferrari into the crowd on the Mille Miglia. Twelve people, including several children, were killed. Enzo Ferrari was charged with manslaughter.

The man on the ascendancy within Ferrari was now Carlo Chiti and he designed a completely new car for the 1958 season, the 246 Dino. Collins, Hawthorn and Musso were retained as drivers. It was not a successful year as Vanwall became the leading contender in F1 and at the French GP Musso was killed. A month later Collins died at the Nurburgring. Hawthorn scrambled to the World Championship but then announced that he was retiring from the sport. A few months later he too was dead after a road accident in England.

For the 1959 season Ferrari hired Tony Brooks and Jean Behra and Americans Phil Hill and Dan Gurney. Cliff Allison was also hired for occasional outings. The team was not a happy one. Behra was fired after punching team manager Romolo Tavoni. Brooks kept himself in with a chance of the championship until the end of the year but after a brush with young team mate Wolfgang von Trips at Sebring he pitted for checks and lost the world title to Jack Brabham. He left at the end of the year.

Ferrari retained Hill and von Trips for the 1960 season. The team debuted the first rear-engined 246 at Monaco in the hands of American Richie Ginther, while regular driver Allison suffered serious arm injuries in a practice crash. The rest of the year was not a success. The 246 was too old to compete. Chiti designed a new rear-engined 156 for the new 1.5-liter formula in 1961 and Hill, von Trips and Ginther were retained as drivers with Giancarlo Baghetti joining the team in midseason.

The shark-nosed 156 proved to be an unbeatable car and while Hill and von Trips fought for the World Championship, Baghetti made history at the French GP by becoming the first man in the history of the World Championship to win on his debut. The World title was settled in tragic fashion at Monza where von Trips crashed into the crowd, killing himself and 14 spectators. Hill was World Champion.

Soon afterwards there was a major upheaval in the racing department when Chiti, Tavoni and several other key staff departed to set up their own ATS racing team. Ferrari promoted 26-year-old engineer Mauro Forghieri to head the racing division. Eugenio Dragoni was hired as team manager. Hill and Baghetti were retained and were joined by a young Mexican driver called Ricardo Rodriguez and a rising Italian star called Lorenzo Bandini. Forghieri realized that he needed a completely new car but the team had to race with the old machinery in 1962. At the end of the year Hill and Baghetti both departed to join ATS. The old cars continued to be used in 1963 although Forghieri prepared a new generation F1 car to integrate some of the innovations which had been made in England in previous years.

John Surtees was hired to drive for the team alongside Willy Mairesse, while a new young Italian Ludovico Scarfiotti was tried. At the German GP Mairesse crashed heavily and broke his arm badly, ending his F1 career.

For the 1964 season the team had a brand new V8 engine designed by Angelo Bellei. The company was increasingly involved in sportscar racing and the production car business was being eyed by the Ford Motor Company but F1 remained the focus and Surtees was able to win several races with the powerful new V8. Jim Clark's Lotus was a faster car but it was fragile and in Mexico Surtees was able to use his reliability to win the World Championship. The final year of the 1.5-liter formula meant that there was little point in building a new engine for 1965. In sportscar racing Ford and Porsche were pushing Ferrari hard. That year Masten Gregory and Jochen Rindt stumbled to victory at Le Mans in a NART Ferrari but it was to be the last major victory for the company in sportscar racing. Surtees did what he could in F1 but Clark's Lotus was dominant.

For 1966 Forghieri took the Ferrari 3.3-liter V12 used in sportscar racing (which had links back to Colombo's V12) and put it in the back of an F1 chassis. The result was a disaster and during testing Surtees found that a 2.5-liter Tasman car was much quicker. Surtees was given the job of developing the V12 engine, while Bandini drove the 2.5-liter V6 car. The team was divided by political battles and although Surtees won at Spa he left the team at mid-season after a dispute with Dragoni. Ferrari engineer Mike Parkes was drafted in to replace him but the only other win came from Scarfiotti at Monza.

The new Cosworth DFV, however, set a new standard for F1 engines. Ferrari realized that things had to change and Dragoni was fired to be replaced by journalist Franco Lini.

Lini knew that the team needed a top level driver alongside Bandini and decided that 23-year-old New Zealander Chris Amon was the best available choice. The cars were still large and heavy but were an improvement on the previous year, but disaster struck almost immediately when Bandini crashed at Monaco and was trapped in his burning car. He survived only a few days. Parkes returned but a few weeks later he crashed heavily at Spa and suffered leg injuries which ended his F1 career.

Jacky Ickx was hired for the 1968 season but the cars were not very competitive again and at the end of the year Lini quit. That summer Ferrari agreed terms to sell the production car business to FIAT for $11m. Ferrari kept control of the racing team. With plenty of money to play with Ferrari decided it was time to revive the team. Little could be done in the short term and so the 1969 season was wasted with Amon struggling with an unreliable car and Pedro Rodriguez replacing Ickx.

At the end of the year Amon departed but Ferrari coaxed Ickx back and hired a wild young Swiss driver called Clay Regazzoni and an Italian called Ignazio Giunti. The flat 12 engine was developed and by the end of the 1970 season the Ferrari was the fastest car. Ickx finished second in the World Championship. That winter Giunti was killed in an unfortunate sportscar accident in Buenos Aires but Ickx and Regazzoni were again competitive at the start of the 1971 season. The updated versions of the 312 were not a success and won only occasional races in 1971 and 1972. Forghieri was transferred to other work and Ferrari handed over development to a young Innocenti engineer called Sandro Colombo. Ickx and Arturo Merzario (Regazzoni had moved to BRM) struggled with the latest version of the car and the team ended the year in total disarray, failling to attend several events.

Ferrari finally acted. Colombo was dropped and Forghieri put back in charge. Luca di Montezemolo was hired to run the team. Regazzoni was rehired and Niki Lauda was also appointed to the team. The package worked. In 1974 Forghieri developed the 312B3. Lauda won in Spain and Holland and Regazzoni won in Germany. The team finished runner-up in the Constructors' title to McLaren. The following year Forghieri designed the 312T (for transverse gearbox). Lauda won five races and the World Championship, while Regazzoni stormed to victory in Monza. Ferrari had scored its first World Championship successes for 11 years.

At the end of the year Montezemolo moved on, to be replaced by Daniele Audetto. The 1976 season should have been a repeat performance. Lauda won four of the first six races and at half-season had double the number of points of any other driver. But at the Nurburgring he crashed heavily and was dragged from the burning wreck on his car by other drivers. The Austrian's recovery is now part of F1 legend. Six weeks after the crash he was back in action at Monza and in the final World Championship showdown in heavy rain at Mount Fuji in Japan he withdrew from the race, handing the World Championship to James Hunt. Ferrari took the Constructors' title. After Lauda's crash Ferrari had hired Carlos Reutemann as his replacement and when Lauda recovered the team had no choice but to dump Regazzoni.

In 1977 Forghieri's 312T2 was just as competitive as the previous car. Audetto departed and was replaced by Roberto Nosetto, who did not get on well with Lauda. The Austrian was keen to show that he was still a winner and although Reutemann was the first to win a race, Lauda scored three wins and took the World title again. With the title over and a Brabham contract in his pocket, Lauda and Ferrari fell out and so for the two final races of the year Enzo Ferrari picked up a 25-year-old Canadian rising star called Gilles Villeneuve. The team had another new sporting director in the form of Marco Piccinini. Villeneuve provided Ferrari with a new lease of life. He would drive any car as Nuvolari had done in the old days. In the first season he had a lot of accidents and it was left to Reutemann to challenge for the World Championship. He won four times but Team Lotus had developed the ground-effect Lotus 79 and the car beat all records of success in one season. At the end of the year Villeneuve won his first victory in Canada. Reutemann moved to Lotus for the 1979 season and so Ferrari hired Jody Scheckter to replace him. Forghieri's 312T4 was a more aerodynamically-effective car and with the massive horsepower from Forghieri's flat-12, the pair were soon in a dominant situation in the World Championship. Villeneuve won three races but Scheckter collected more points and Villeneuve was happy to let his team-mate take the title.

The 1980 season was a disaster. Ferrari was left behind by the aerodynamic development of the British teams. The 312 T5 was an ungainly car and failed to win a race. Scheckter retired at the end of the year and Ferrari hired a rising French star called Didier Pironi. The team developed a new 1.5-liter turbocharged engine and the new car was designated the 126C.

Ferrari had fallen way behind the British teams in chassis technology but the engine was remarkable and that year Villeneuve scored two memorable victories in Monaco and Spain.

Midway through the year Ferrari hired Harvey Postlethwaite. Forghieri was not happy. Postlethwaite's 126C2 chassis was highly competitive but the 1982 season soon turned into a nightmare. At Imola Pironi nipped ahead of Villeneuve to win the San Marino GP. Villeneuve was furious, saying that the Frenchman had broken team orders. Two weeks later Villeneuve died in a qualifying accident at Zolder. Pironi seemed to be on course for the title and Patrick Tambay was hired to support him.

At Hockenheim, driving in the wet, Pironi ran into the back of another car. The Ferrari somersaulted and the Frenchman suffered terrible leg injuries. He would never race in F1 again. Tambay took up the fight, joined at the end of the year by Mario Andretti. The team won the Constructors' title but the Drivers' went to Keke Rosberg.

For the 1983 season Ferrari hired Rene Arnoux to partner Tambay. Arnoux was obviously quicker and won three times. Tambay won once. The team won the Constructors' title again but the Drivers' crown again eluded them. At the end of that year Tambay was dropped and Ferrari hired his first Italian driver for a decade. Michele Alboreto and Arnoux raced Postlethwaite's 126C4 but the team won only one race, Belgium, in the face of McLaren-TAG domination. The political in-fighting within the team increased and at the end of the year Forghieri was ousted. Postlethwaite stayed on as chief designer while the engine development was handed over to Ildo Renzetti.

At the start of the 1985 season Arnoux was sacked and Ferrari picked up Stefan Johansson as its second driver but the package was not competitive against the McLaren-TAGs and the Williams-Hondas. Alboreto won twice and finished runner-up to Alain Prost in the World Championship. Over the winter Ferrari hired Frenchman Jean-Jacques His to take over engine development while Postlethwaite stayed on to design the new F1/86. The package was not a success and in the mid-season Ferrari hired McLaren designer John Barnard. He refused to leave England but Ferrari agreed to allow him to set up a technical headquarters in Britain. Factional in-fighting tore the team apart but there was some optimism at the end of 1987 when new signing Gerhard Berger won the final two races of the year.

But the 1988 season was a disaster. The McLaren-Hondas were totally dominant and in midseason the internal politics at Ferrari finally came to a head. Enzo Ferrari supported John Barnard's desire for the team to switch to V12 engines, while his son Piero Lardi Ferrari, Piccinini and Postlethwaite wanted to continue with turbo engines. Ferrari ousted his own son and gave the management of the racing team to a FIAT man Pier Giorgio Cappelli. Postlethwaite departed to join Tyrrell. Piccinini stayed on to look after political issues but he was no longer running the team.

In August Enzo Ferrari died. A few weeks later at Monza Ayrton Senna's McLaren stumbled over a backmarker and retired from the race and Berger and Alboreto finished 1-2 for Ferrari. It was the only non-McLaren victory of the year. By then FIAT had taken over the running of the team. Piccinini disappeared. Pierguido Castelli was appointed technical director overseeing Barnard's activities. There was immediate friction between the British and Italian ends of the operation and Ferrari began to look for someone to replace Barnard. The team also hired Nigel Mansell to replace Alboreto.

In March 1989 Cappelli was replaced as head of the racing department by Cesare Fiorio, formerly the competitions director of Lancia and Alfa Romeo. Barnard's new 641 appeared in Brazil and Mansell won on the car's debut. Berger was fortunate to emerge unscathed from a fiery accident at Imola and was not fully competitive until the autumn. In June the team announced that Enrique Scalabroni would take over chassis design from John Barnard for the 1990 car. The team was later bolstered by the arrival of another McLaren engineer Steve Nichols, while Paolo Massai was put in charge of engine development. Castelli remained technical director. At the end of the year Alain Prost was hired to replace Berger.

The 1990 season was not a success. Scalabroni and aerodynamicist Henri Durand were soon dropped and Nichols was put in charge of chassis design. A political battle developed between Fiorio and Prost. The Frenchman won five victories (Mansell won one) but he was beaten to the World title by Senna, who ran him off the road in Suzuka at the end of the year.

Mansell departed at the end of the year and Ferrari hired Jean Alesi to be his replacement. At the start of the 1991 season Senna's McLaren-Honda was completely dominant and Prost managed to engineer the departure of Fiorio. Fiat appointed a triumvirate to lead the team consisting of Piero Lardi Ferrari, Piccinini and Claudio Lombardi, the latter running the team. Castelli remained as technical director.

In October that year Lombardi fired Prost after the Frenchman made critical remarks about the car.

The lack of success at the team prompted Fiat to put Luca di Montezemolo in charge of the entire Ferrari company. Castelli was transferred to a new job in Fiat. Lombardi became technical director with Postlethwaite rehired to head the chassis design department. Nichols left to become technical director at Sauber. Alesi was joined by Italian Ivan Capelli but he failed to impress and was himself replaced at the end of the year by Nicola Larini. In August 1992 after another season without wins Ferrari rehired Barnard and a new British base was established. Postlethwaite was put in charge of the production and the race team while Lombardi was moved to head the engine department.

For 1993 Ferrari rehired Berger to partner Alesi but the car was still unable to compete with Williams-Renault. In July Montezemolo named Jean Todt as the new sporting director of the team. A few weeks later Postlethwaite left and was replaced by Valerio Bianchi from Magneti-Marelli. There were signs of improvement but the only success came when Berger won a fortunate victory at Hockenheim. At the end of the year there was another technical reshuffle with Lombardi and Bianchi being dropped. Gustav Brunner was named head of the chassis department with Barnard as chief designer. Lombardi was replaced as head of the engine department by Paolo Martinelli.

The new Barnard-designed Ferrari 412T2 was more competitive but the only success came when Alesi scored a lucky victory in Canada. The gradual improvement meant that Ferrari was able to attract Michael Schumacher for the 1996 season and as Berger refused to stay as his team-mate Ferrari hired Eddie Irvine from Jordan.

The new Ferrari F310 proved to be a disaster with major gearbox trouble at the start of the year but Schumacher kept the team's hopes alive with virtuoso victories in Spain, Belgium and at Monza. At the end of the year Ross Brawn was appointed technical director, with Barnard as head of design and development and Martinelli remaining in charge of the engine department. Brawn then hired Rory Byrne to be chief designer and Ferrari agreed to sell its British design operation to Barnard. The F310B was reworked by Barnard for the 1997 season and Schumacher was able to win four races and challenge Jacques Villeneuve for the World Championship. The German driver tried to drive Villeneuve off the track at Jerez at the end of the year and as a result was disqualified from the World Championship.

The first Byrne-designed Ferrari arrived in 1998 but by then McLaren-Mercedes had become the dominant force in F1 and while Schumacher won six times, Mika Hakkinen took the World title. In 1999 McLaren struggled and Schumacher seemed to be on his way to the World Championship when he crashed heavily at Silverstone as the result of a mechanical failure and broke his leg. Irvine found himself thrust into the limelight. Aided by McLaren's mistakes and by team orders which allowed him to overtake Schumacher's replacement, Mika Salo at Hockenheim, Irvine found himself challenging for the World Championship. Schumacher returned to action in Malaysia and orchestrated another victory for the Ulsterman but in the championship showdown in Suzuka Irvine was soundly beaten by Hakkinen but Schumacher finished second and so Ferrari was able to win the Constructors' title for the first time since 1983.

It was the start of a great era. Byrne produced the new F1-2000 over the winter and Schumacher became Ferrari's first Drivers' World Champion since 1979. He and his new team mateRubens Barrichello won Ferrari the Constructors' title in 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003 and 2004. Michael won five consecutive Drivers' titles pulverising most of the F1 records. The dominance and the attitudes it engendered meant that the team's tactics became very unpopular, the first backlash coming in Austria in 2002 when team orders dictated the result. The fans rebelled.

By the end of 2004 the team was politically isolated in F1 and in 2005 was unable to compete with Renault and McLaren but made a strong comeback in 2006 - with Schumacher paired with Felipe Massa - although still lost the title to Renault. At the end of the year Michael Schumacher retired and was replaced by Kimi Raikkonen. At the same time the team lost technical director Ross Brawn and Paolo Martinelli, the head of the engine department but hoped that internal promotions would keep disruption in 2007 to a minimum.

The changes did have an effect on the team in 2008. The wind tunnel maintenance programme failed and the team's facility in Maranello was out of action for several weeks, causing the drivers to fall back in the World Championships. Nigel Stepney, a disgruntled employee, then became the catalyst for a spying scandal which resulted in McLaren being deprived of its Constructors' World Championship points and seriously destabilised. Ferrari was able to get back into the hunt and won the World Championship at the last gasp in Brazil, with Kimi Raikkonen taking the Drivers' title with an improbable result as McLaren's novice Lewis Hamilton threw away his chances.

The downside of 2007 was that there was considerable bitterness about the affair in the F1 paddock with some believing McLaren and some believing Ferrari. It will take a long time for that rift to heal.

There was further change for 2008 with Jean Todt standing down as team principal and his place being taken by Stefano Domenicali. However the team went into 2008 as favourites to win the title.

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