F1 / April 29, 1984, Belgian GP: Alboreto’s first victory in Ferrari – History

F1 / 29 aprile 1984, GP Belgio: la prima vittoria di Alboreto in Ferrari
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In the long history of Ferrari, the only rider of Italian nationality who was able to conquer the world title was the Milanese Alberto Ascari, who succeeded in the feat in 1952 and 1953. Even today, since then, no other ‘blue’ has therefore managed to achieve a similar goal, even if only one was able to touch such an affirmation. Just like Ascari, he too was originally from the Lombard capital, and went down in history as one of the most emblematic gentlemen of the Circus, as well as one of the most recognized talents in Italy and in the world: Michele Alboreto.

Born in 1956, he began his adventure in the top flight in 1981, which he arrived at after winning the Formula 3 European championship the previous year. Hired by Tyrrell, Alboreto achieved two victories between 1982 and 1983, in both cases in the United States. To these, he was joined by another podium at Imola in 1982, with other convincing performances that contributed to an ever increasing consideration of Enzo Ferrariwho wanted it in his stable for the 1984. The move to Maranello materialized precisely for that season, with the wedding in Italian sauce that reached the first, great result on the occasion of the Belgian Grand Prix.

Contrary to the recent history of this specific event, which has always seen the Spa-Francorchamps circuit as the venue for the event, at the turn of the ’70s and’ 80s it was instead the track of Attic to welcome the racing cars of Formula 1, where, moreover, the history of Ferrari recorded the terrible death of Gilles Villeneuve in 1982. Two years later, however, although with a level of competitiveness not yet at the highest levels, this place was the site of a party all tricolor. Until then, in fact, Alboreto did not have the opportunity to set the best time on Saturday, which instead happened with the qualifying of that GP: the Milanese in fact obtained his prima pole position in Ferrari ed in careermoreover in front of his teammate René Arnoux, becoming the first Italian to conquer a start at the pole with the Rossa dal 1966.

The next day, the April 29, 1984 – exactly 38 years ago – the Milanese was the author of an absolutely flawless race from the start to the checkered flag, which resulted in the first victory at the wheel of Ferrari, the third in her career. Even then, he also put an end to a long fast of winning Italian pilots with the Cavallino, which still lasted since 1966 with Ludovico Scarfiotti. Subsequently, Alboreto went one step away from winning the world title in 1985, when Ferrari’s reliability betrayed him in the second half of the championship, ‘giving’ the title to Alain Prost’s McLaren. His adventure in Maranello ended in 1988, while that in F1 continued until 1994, before embarking on another winning chapter in the GT category. Here, in 1997, he climbed the top step of the podium in the 24 Hours of Le Mans, only to triumph in the 12 Hours of Sebring in 2001. In the same year, however, Alboreto was the victim of a fatal accident while testing an Audi R8 Sport on the German circuit of Lausitzring, dying out at the age of 44.

FP | Alessandro Prada


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