Pista di Fiorano

Ferrari’s Private Playground: The History Of Pista Di Fiorano

While Enzo Ferrari commonly used the Modena Autodrome for the testing of his cars throughout the 1960s, extensive regulations on the circuit persuaded him to construct his own test facility that could be extensively used to test new production and racing models.

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Photos: Ferrari

Constructing Fiorano

Fiorano 1972

With the ever-growing regulations at Modena Autodrome hindering Ferrari’s testing at the circuit, Enzo Ferrari took the decision to build his own test circuit. It was an idea that allowed Ferrari to extensively test any production or racing models the company conceived almost straight from the factory.

The circuit was constructed on a piece of land already owned by Ferrari, nearby the factory in Maranello, across from the town of Fiorano Modenese. Construction started on the circuit in 1971, and was opened and ready for use on the 8th of April, 1972.

The length of the initial layout was three kilometers with a maximum circuit width 8.40 metres. The circuit itself was based off some of the most renowned corners from that period of F1, including the Tarzan corner at Zandvoort, the Brünnchen jump at the Nürburgring and the Gasometer corner from Monaco, which is more commonly known today as La Rascasse.

Changes To The Circuit 

Charles Leclerc Fiorano

The track stayed relatively the same until the introduction of a chicane in 1992, as well as a chicane in 1996 thanks to the input of then new Ferrari driver Michael Schumacher. He asked for the use of a possible hairpin upon the circuit’s renovation the same year.

The renovations made in 1996 saw the circuit being shortened by 24 meters to a total length of 2.997 kilometers. A new corner was also introduced during the circuit’s revision, a faster first corner at the end of the pit straight to replace the sharper corner that was originally in place.

In 2001, a skid pan was introduced at the circuit as well as an irrigation system to allow the simulation of a wet circuit and wet tyre testing. Further on-site improvements allowed for the installation of a telemetry system, which allowed the recording of telemetry from a car on circuit from the on-track pit area.

The renovations throughout the years allowed for Ferrari to further improve the positives of the facility as well as keeping the challenge it poses for the road and racing cars tested on the circuit. Thanks to the technical, challenging layout of the circuit, it has also proved valuable to various Ferrari drivers through the years as a practice and testing area for coming seasons.

Fastest Laps At Fiorano

Charles Leclerc Fiorano

The lap record at Fiorano is currently held by Michael Schumacher, who, in 2004, set a lap of 0:55.999 in that year’s F1 car, the Ferrari F2004. Andrea Bartolini holds the fastest race car time with the Maserati MC12 Competizione with a 1:11.711, while the fastest road car is the 2019 Ferrari SF90 Stradale, with a time of 1:19.000.

Car (F1)

Fastest Lap

Ferrari F2004

0:55.999

Ferrari F2003-GA

0:56.330

Ferrari 248 F1

0:57.099

Ferrari F2005

0:57.146

Ferrari SF70H

0:57.150


Car (Race Car)

Fastest Lap

Maserati MC12 Competizione

1:11.711

Ferrari 333 SP

1:11.900

Ferrari 333 SP (with slicks and air restrictors)

1:13.000

Ferrari FXX-K

1:14.000

Ferrari 599XX Evoluzione

1:15.000


Car (Road Car)

Fastest Lap

Ferrari SF90 Stradale

1:19.000

Ferrari LaFerrari

1:19.700

Ferrari F12tdf

1:21.000

Ferrari 488 Pista

1:21.500

Ferrari 488 Pista Spider

1:21.500


Reaction 
To The Circuit

Fiorano Testing 1988

With the circuit being situated right beside Enzo Ferrari’s house, it is known that from the construction of the circuit till his death in 1988, he would often sit in his house or even out on the circuit to watch and listen to the cars on the circuit. Some even say that one of his intentions of building the circuit was to enjoy watching his company testing new concepts and models without any outside influence.

The circuit itself is closed to the public, but customers are often invited to test their newly-purchased models on the track. Various Tifosi are also known to watch from the roadside when Ferrari are testing on the circuit, particularly any F1 testing that does be ongoing.

Multiple drivers have expressed their love for the circuit through the years, including Niki Lauda, Gilles Villeneuve and Michael Schumacher but to name a few, while the circuit saw the debut of drivers such as Carlos Sainz and Sebastian Vettel, giving them their first taste of F1 with Scuderia Ferrari.

Fiorano has also appeared in many video games, including Project CARS 2, rFactor and F1 Challenge 99-02.

Written by Cóilín Higgins. 


1 comment


  • Tom Ferrara

    Excellent article.
    Thank you.
    Tom


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