It happened today

It happened today – 23 December

On 23rd December 1956, Michele Alboreto was born in Milan. In the early stages of his career, the Italian driver distinguished himself in open-wheeler series, winning the 1981 European Formula 3 Championship as well as in endurance races, playing his part in Lancia winning the constructors’ championship in 1980 and ’81. That same year, Michele made his Formula 1 debut with Tyrell, where he stayed until the end of 1982. In 1984, he made the move to Ferrari, where he stayed until the end of 1988. With the Maranello marque, Alboreto took part in 80 Grands Prix, winning three and starting twice from pole position. In 1985, he came second in the Drivers’ championship, beaten by Alain Prost. His victory at Hockenheim that year is still the last win for an Italian driver at the wheel of a Ferrari. After leaving the Scuderia, Alboreto continued racing in the blue riband series up to 1994, although he failed to get any notable results.

“Over the next few years, he returned to racing sports cars, first with Porsche, with whom he won the Le Mans 24 Hours in 1997 and then, with Audi, with whom he won the 2000 Petit Le Mans and the 2001 Sepang 12 Hours. It was to be his final victory: Michele died on 25 April that year at the Lausitzring, at an Audi test session in preparation for the Le Mans 24 Hours.

“He’s a youngster who drives very well, making few mistakes,” Enzo Ferrari wrote of him in his book ‘Piloti, che gente…” “He is quick and has a nice style: gifts that remind me of Wolfgang von Trips, whom Alboreto also resembles with his educated and serious manner. I have maintained that he is one of the six best drivers in Formula 1 and with a competitive car, he will definitely be in with a chance of becoming champion.”

Editor’s note
The “It happened today” column is taking a break, before starting up again in the new year: in the meantime, happy holidays to all our readers!

It happened today

It happened today – 1 August

On 1st August 1976, the German Grand Prix was held at the Nurburgring. In qualifying, Niki Lauda who had dominated the season so far…
It happened today - 31 July

It happened today – 31 July

On 31st July the Zandvoort circuit hosted the second running of the eponymous Grand Prix. The race was run over two qualifying legs, which…
It happened today - 30 July

It happened today – 30 July

On 30th July 2006, the German Grand Prix was held at Hockenheim. Kimi Raikkonen ruled the roost in his McLaren in qualifying, while Ferraris...
More