Gents, today marks the opening race for the Lamborghini Blancpain Endurance Series at historic Monza. The series will visit circuits across Europe in 2011 as professional and gentleman drivers compete for Lamborghini honours at the wheel of 570hp V10 Lamborghini Super Trofeo race cars.
The Gallardo Super Trofeo is based on the LP 570-4 model and powered by that car’s 5.2L direct-inject V10 tuned to produced 570 horsepower.
The Autodromo Nazionale Monza is a race track located near the town of Monza, north of Milan, in Italy. The circuit’s biggest event is the Formula One Italian Grand Prix, having hosted the event since the sport’s inception, and is known as the home of the Tifosi, supporters of Italian team Scuderia Ferrari.
The first track was built from May to July 1922 by 3,500 workers, financed by the Milan Automobile Club – which created the Società Incremento Automobilismo e Sport (SIAS) (English: Automobile Sport and Encouragement Company) to run the track. The initial form was a 3.4 square kilometres (1.31 sq mi) site with 10 kilometres (6.2 mi) of macadamised road – comprising a 4.5 kilometres (2.80 mi) loop track, and a 5.5 kilometres (3.42 mi) road track. The track was officially opened on 3 September 1922, with the maiden race the second Italian Grand Prix held on 10 September 1922.
In 1928, the most serious Italian racing accident to date ended in the death of driver Emilio Materassi and 27 spectators at that year’s Grand Prix. The accident led to further Grand Prix races confinement to the high-speed loop until 1932. The 1933 race was marked by the deaths of three drivers and the Grand Prix layout was changed, with two chicanes added and the longer straights removed.
There was major rebuilding in 1938–39, constructing new stands and entrances, resurfacing the track, moving portions of the track and adding two new bends. The resulting layout gave a Grand Prix lap of 6.300 kilometres (3.91 mi), in use until 1954. The outbreak of World War II meant racing at the track was suspended until 1948, and parts of the circuit degraded due to the lack of attention. Monza was renovated over a period of two months at the beginning of 1948, and a Grand Prix was held on 17 October 1948.
Monza consists of very long straights and tight chicanes, putting a premium on good braking stability and traction. The circuit, of 5.793 kilometres (3.600 mi), is very hard on gearboxes, with many gear changes per lap. Formula 1 engines are at full throttle for nearly 80% of the lap, with engine failures common, notably Fernando Alonso in the 2006 Italian Grand Prix.
Formula One cars are set up with mimimal wing angle, to ensure the lowest level of drag on the straights. There are only 3 proper corners at Monza, the two Lesmos and the Parabolica, so cars are set up with maximum performance on the straights.
Overtaking at Monza is extremely difficult, due to the poor behaviour of the cars under heavy braking. The long Parabolica corner is difficult for cars to follow closely.