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Merzario

Merzario
Full name Team Merzario
Founder(s) Arturo Merzario
Noted drivers Arturo Merzario
Alberto Colombo
Gianfranco Brancatelli
Formula One World Championship career
First entry 1977 Spanish Grand Prix
Races entered 38
Engines Cosworth
Constructors'
Championships
0
Drivers'
Championships
0
Race victories 0
Points 0
Pole positions 0
Fastest laps 0
Final entry 1979 United States Grand Prix

Merzario was a Formula One and Formula Two team and constructor from Italy. The team participated in 38 Formula One World Championship Grands Prix but scored no championship points.

Contents

  • Formula One 1
    • 1977 1.1
    • 1978 1.2
    • 1979 1.3
  • After Formula One 2
  • Complete Formula One results 3
  • Complete Formula Two results 4
  • References 5

Formula One

1977

Merzario was set up in 1977 by former Ferrari, Williams and March driver Arturo Merzario when he could no longer find a drive with an established team. He initially campaigned a March 761B during 1977, his best result being 14th in the 1977 Belgian Grand Prix. This proved to be the only occasion in three years of participation in Formula One, that one of their cars was classified at the finish of a World Championship Grand Prix. During the early part of the season Merzario's car was consistently the fastest of a number of March 761s on the grid,[1] though as the season wore on, he slipped down the grids and finally decided to abandon the season and concentrate on the following year and his new car.

1978

Merzario's first self-built Formula One effort, the A1, appeared in 1978 and was a basically conventional car based largely on his March 761B, with a red colour scheme and crude bodywork vaguely reminiscent of a Ferrari 312T2 in its use of cockpit-side ducting for an air intake. It used the then-common combination of the Cosworth DFV engine and Hewland gearbox. The livery changed from red to black before the 1978 Monaco Grand Prix,[1] though it was not until the Swedish Grand Prix that it finished a race, although unclassified, being eight laps adrift of the winner after a long pitstop. For the Austrian Grand Prix, a second A1 was unveiled, although it was suspected that this was actually the team's old March 761B with new bodywork.[1] With this car at his disposal, Merzario performed slightly better in qualifying but still failed to be classified in a race. For the Italian Grand Prix, both A1s were entered, with Alberto Colombo driving the original A1 and Merzario taking the newer second A1. Colombo posted the slowest time during qualifying and did not make the grid, while Merzario qualified comfortably, only for the engine to fail during the race. The team qualified the car on eight occasions during 1978, but retired seven times with mechanical failures.

1979

For the 1979 Formula One season the second A1 was revised into the A1B with more elegant bodywork and revised front suspension, and a new yellow and black livery. The A1B was the only Merzario to qualify for Grands Prix during 1979, which it did twice, though it retired on both occasions.

The A2 (designated A3 by some sources),[1] designed by Merzario and Simon Hadfield and based on the first A1, was ready in time for the European rounds of the 1979 season with the same engine and gearbox combination, and it had been modified into a ground effect 'wing' car. Only one example was built,[2] and Merzario could not qualify it for a single Grand Prix. He broke his arm in Belgium, and Gianfranco Brancatelli was employed to drive at Monaco, but also failed to qualify.

By this time, Merzario had purchased the assets of the Kauhsen team (and their driver Brancatelli), arguably taking on cars even worse than his old March-based vehicle.[1] The resultant A4, which debuted at the 1979 British Grand Prix, employed the same Cosworth / Hewland running gear and the suspension was similar to the A2, but the bodywork was less bulky, with better sidepods for improved airflow. However, the car again failed to qualify for every Grand Prix that it entered, proving even slower than its predecessors. However, Merzario did qualify and race the car in the non-championship Dino Ferrari Grand Prix at Imola, where he finished 11th and last, two laps down.

After Formula One

After plans to modify the A4 into the A5 were not completed due to financial problems,[1] Merzario turned to constructing Formula Two cars. He was keen to point out that the engine bay of his 1980 BMW-engined M1 F2 machine could easily be modified to take a Cosworth DFV F1 engine, though no such effort was ever made.[2] The car was fairly unsuccessful in F2, and Merzario decided to return to running March chassis for 1981. With March 812s, the team finally scored two podiums in F2, with Piero Necchi at the wheel, but after a lacklustre 1982 season, Merzario again built his own cars for 1983 with minimal success. After moving down to Italian Formula 3, he finally moved away from team ownership in the mid-1980s.

Complete Formula One results

()

Year Chassis Engine Tyres Drivers No. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 Points WCC
1977 March 761B Cosworth DFV 3.0 V8 G ARG BRA RSA USW ESP MON BEL SWE FRA GBR GER AUT NED ITA USA CAN JPN 0 NC
Arturo Merzario 37 Ret DNQ 14 Ret Ret DNQ DNQ
1978 Merzario A1 Cosworth DFV 3.0 V8 G ARG BRA RSA USW MON BEL ESP SWE FRA GBR GER AUT NED ITA USA CAN 0 NC
Arturo Merzario 37 Ret DNQ Ret Ret DNPQ DNPQ DNQ NC DNQ Ret DNQ DNQ Ret Ret Ret DNQ
Alberto Colombo 34 DNPQ
1979 Merzario A1B
A2
A4
Cosworth DFV 3.0 V8 G ARG BRA RSA USW ESP BEL MON FRA GBR GER AUT NED ITA CAN USA 0 NC
Arturo Merzario 24 Ret DNQ DNQ Ret DNQ DNQ DNQ DNQ DNQ DNQ DNQ DNQ DNQ DNQ
Gianfranco Brancatelli DNPQ

Complete Formula Two results

()

Year Chassis Engine Drivers 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13
1980 Merzario M1 BMW THR HOC NÜR VAL PAU SIL ZOL MUG ZAN PER MIS HOC
Arturo Merzario Ret Ret Ret 9 Ret 16 17 DNS Ret
Guido Daccò 11 Ret
Piero Necchi Ret Ret 12 Ret Ret Ret Ret DNQ 12
1981 Merzario M1
March 812
BMW SIL HOC THR NÜR VAL MUG PAU PER SPA DON MIS MAN
Piero Necchi DNS DNS 6 Ret Ret 3 3 11 7 Ret
Gianfranco Trombetti 20 Ret Ret DNQ Ret Ret 12 12 12 13
Arturo Merzario DNQ DNS Ret Ret
Marco Brand DNQ Ret
Loris Kessel DNPQ 19
Guido Daccò Ret
Jo Gartner DNQ 8
1982 Merzario 822 BMW SIL HOC THR NÜR MUG VAL PAU SPA HOC DON MAN PER MIS
Jo Gartner 6 Ret 10 Ret Ret 7 Ret 15 7 Ret Ret
Oscar Pedersoli Ret Ret 19 DNS Ret Ret Ret Ret Ret Ret Ret Ret
Richard Dallest DNS Ret 6 Ret
Harald Brutschin 13 DNQ DNQ 17 Ret
Guido Daccò 12 8 7 13
Roberto Campominosi 10
Lamberto Leoni 14
1983 Merzario M28 BMW SIL THR HOC NÜR VAL PAU JAR DON MIS PER ZOL MUG
Fulvio Ballabio Ret Ret 14 Ret
Guido Daccò Ret Ret 15
Richard Dallest Ret Ret Ret 8 7 Ret 8
1984 Merzario M84 BMW SIL HOC THR VAL MUG PAU HOC MIS PER DON BRH
Stefano Livio 10 13 12 Ret 13 Ret
Aldo Bertuzzi Ret 12 DNS
Max Busslinger 10

References

  1. ^ a b c d e f Profile at F1 Rejects
  2. ^ a b David Hodges, "A-Z of Grand Prix Cars", Crowood, 2001, pp.170.
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