- Benetton Formula
Former F1 team
Short_name = Benetton
Long_name = Benetton Formula Ltd.
Enstone, United Kingdom
Flavio Briatore Rocco Benetton Ross Brawn Mike Gascoyne Nigel Stepney Pat Symonds Steve Matchett
Rory Byrne Nicholas Tombazis
Michael Schumacher Nelson Piquet Gerhard Berger Riccardo Patrese Jean Alesi
1986 Brazilian Grand Prix
Races = 260
Cons_champ = 1 (F1|1995)
Drivers_champ = 2 (F1|1994, F1|1995)
Wins = 27
Poles = 15
Fastest_laps = 36
Last race =
2001 Japanese Grand Prix
Benetton Formula Ltd., commonly referred to simply as Benetton, was a
Formula Oneconstructor that participated from 1986to 2001. The team was owned by the Benetton familywho run a worldwide chain of clothing stores of the same name. In 2000 the team was purchased by Renault, but competed as Benetton for the 2001 season. In 2002 the team became Renault F1.
Benetton Groupentered in Formula Oneas a sponsor company for Tyrrell in 1983, then Alfa Romeo in 1984and 1985and finally Tolemanin 1985. Benetton Formula Ltd. was formed at the end of 1985 when the Tolemanteam was sold to the Benetton family. The team began with BMW engines and then later switched to Ford.
The team was managed by
Flavio Briatorefrom 1990until 1997. Rocco Benetton, the youngest son of Luciano Benetton joined the team as aerodynamics engineer in 1998and fired Briatore. He replaced him with Prodrive boss David Richards, who lasted only for a year when he too was fired, due to a disagreement with the Benetton family about future strategy. Following Richards' departure, Rocco Benetton managed the team for three years until its sale to Renault. Rocco Benetton successfully managed to achieve an unheard of salesprice in F1 terms.
The Benetton team is best known for its success with
Michael Schumacher, who accounts for 19 of the team's 27 career victories and their 2 drivers' championships. After switching to Renault engines, they also won the constructor's championship in 1995with Schumacher and Johnny Herbert. After 1995, Schumacher moved to Ferrari along with Ross Brawn, Nigel Stepney, Rory Byrneand 11 other key figures from his two championship winning seasons with Benetton. From this point, the Benetton team was never what it once was.
March 16 2000, the team was sold to Renaultfor $120 million US. As part of their restructuring, Renault brought back Flavio Briatoreas team manager. During their final season in 2001the drivers, Jenson Buttonand Giancarlo Fisichella, were often on the back two rows of the grid. This was in part attributed to the new 111-degree wide angle engine. But as the Renault era approached, the cars' performance lifted. Towards the end of the season, Giancarlo Fisichellarecorded a fine podium finish behind Michael Schumacherand David Coulthard. Continued development allowed Benetton to leave Formula 1 on somewhat of a high.
During the F1|1994 season, some rival teams claimed Benetton had found a way to violate the FIA-imposed ban on electronic aids, including
Traction Controland Launch Control. On investigation, the FIA discovered "start sequence" (launch control) software in the Benetton B194cars, and a variety of illegal software in rival teams' cars as well. FIA had no evidence the software was ever used, so teams found with the software received little to no punishment. No traction control software was found to be in the Benetton cars, however. Flavio Briatore, Benetton's chief in 1994, said in 2001 that "Our only mistake was that at the time we were too young and people were suspicious".cite news |author = Reuters |title = Seven-year ban on traction control likely over |url = http://espn.go.com/auto/news/2001/0204/1062927.html |publisher = www.ESPN.com |date = 2001-02-04 |accessdate = 2006-10-24]
During the 1994 season Benetton removed a fuel filter from the refueling rig used during pit stops. This may have resulted in a fire that took place during Jos Verstappen's first pitstop at Hockenheim.
Benetton Team had a
United Kingdomlicense from 1986to 1995and an Italian license from 1996to 2001. The Benetton familywanted this change of nationality in order to have an F1 team of their own country. [cite web| title=New Benetton launched today| url=http://www.grandprix.com/ns/ns00464.html| date=February 5, 1996| work=GrandPrix.com| accessdate=September 13| accessyear=2006] [cite web| title=Will Benetton's nationalism cause problems?| url=http://www.grandprix.com/ns/ns00419.html| date=January 1, 1996| work=GrandPrix.com| accessdate=September 13| accessyear=2006] The team was based in the UK throughout.
Former drivers for Benetton include
Gerhard Berger- made first and last win for the team, at the 1986 Mexican Grand Prixand 1997 German Grand Prix. And he also made first podium finish at the 1986 San Marino Grand Prix.
Teo Fabi- made first pole positionfor the team at the 1986 Austrian Grand Prix.
Giancarlo Fisichella- made last pole position for the team at the 1998 Austrian Grand Prixand last podium finish at the 2001 Belgian Grand Prix.
Roberto Moreno- made first 1–2 finish for the team at the 1990 Japanese Grand Prixwith Nelson Piquet.
Nelson Piquet- first (ex-)Formula One World Champion joined with the team.
Michael Schumacher- won drivers' titles in the 1994 and 1995 seasons.
Complete Formula One results
() (results in bold indicate pole position)
* Benetton Rugby
List of Italian companies
List of Formula One constructors
* [http://www.benetton.com/ United Colors of Benetton]
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