F1Weekly podcast # 639

Stefano Coletti

Clark and Nasir have the Korean Grand Prix post race round-table discussion, we have Motorsports Mondial and special interview with Stefano Coletti.

STEFANO COLETTI
was born in the Principality of Monaco on 6 April 1989. He weighs 73 kg and is 1.80 m tall.

According to his parents Stefano was born under a special star; Armande (of Monegasque nationality) and Gianluigi (of Italian nationality), Stefano was conceived on board Keke Rosberg’s yacht during a summer vacation – was this perhaps a sign of his destiny?

He was quite an unruly and quite hyperactive child. In order to channel his high levels of energy he started playing soccer at a young age, then tennis and lastly skiing. However he did not reach his full potential as a sportsman.

Armande then had the idea to take Stefano to the Arma di Taggia go-kart circuit to see if he enjoyed the experience. There followed an opportune encounter with Guido Mandracci, a motorbike champion in the 70s and manager of the circuit. Guido took Stefano under his wing and discovered a talented driver with an exceptional ability to analyse the track. Despite a slow start in karting, Guido was very optimistic about Stefano’s talent and persisted with his training. He knew what he was doing and a special bond developed between them, leading over time to a huge improvement in his performance and skill level.

Stefano, like the majority of the best drivers in Formula 1, began his career in karting, where he shone during the 2003 and 2004 seasons, becoming the European Champion, before moving on to single seaters. However, despite his raw speed on the circuit, he lacked consistency. Talent must be combined with hard work and training – a difficult concept for a teenager. From late 2010 Stefano had a step change in his attitude to the sport, due to his increasing maturity and awareness of his goals and what he had to do to get to them. His training has become relentless, with a daily workout of a combination of cycling, jogging, gym work and canoeing in the sea off Monaco – all under the supervision of a dedicated coach.

A naturally very strong athlete, Stefano challenges now his GP2 rivals with a mixture of determination, concentration and composure. In 2011 he obtained three victories in his debut year and after gaining more experience in 2012 has begun the 2013 season in the best way with two wins and three podiums in the first eight races in Malaysia, Bahrain, Spain and Monaco.

[audio:http://www.podtrac.com/pts/redirect.mp3/mp3.f1weekly.com/podcasts/10-08-13f1weekly639.mp3]

F3 European Championship

FIA Formula 3 European Championship, round 7, race 1, Nuerburgring (D)

WILL RAFFAELE MARCIELLO SEAL THE DEAL, IN HIS HOME EVENT?

This weekend, the up-and-coming single-seater aces competing in the FIA Formula 3 European Championship travel to Italy for the second time this year. At the 4.085 kilometre circuit of Vallelunga, located not far from Rome, Raffaele Marciello (Prema Powerteam) will have his first match point. The Ferrari Driver Academy protégé who holds a 9.5-point lead over second-placed Felix Rosenqvist (kfzteile24 Mücke Motorsport) could secure the FIA Formula 3 Championship title early, at the Autodromo Piero Taruffi.

The penultimate race meeting of the season is held at a circuit local hero Marciello knows very well. For Rosenqvist and the major part of the field, however, it represents virgin soil. On Friday, the official day of testing, the young talents will have six hours for familiarising themselves with the circuit, its layout and its characteristics. Meanwhile, the battle for the title has turned into a duel between Raffaele Marciello and Felix Rosenqvist. The Swede gained a lot of ground at Zandvoort, thus closing in on championship leader Marciello.

At the same time, the battle for the third position in the championship is just as thrilling. In the past weeks, the main actors in this battle – Alex Lynn (Prema Powerteam) and Lucas Auer (Prema Powerteam) – alternated as third in the championship. Currently, Briton Lynn has a slight lead over Austria’s Auer, the nephew of former Formula 1 Gerhard Berger. 

The FIA Formula 3 European Championship entry list features three Italian talents: title contender Raffaele Marciello, Eddie Cheever (Prema Powerteam) and Antonio Giovinazzi (Double R Racing). In addition to Marciello and Cheever, Lucas Auer and Alex Lynn also represent the colours of Prema Powerteam that is one of the three Italian squads on the FIA Formula 3 European Championship grid. 

Furthermore, John Bryant-Meisner (Fortec Motorsports) is making his FIA Formula 3 European Championship debut, at Vallelunga. The Swede advances from the German ATS Formula 3 Cup to the European Championship. 

Eddie Cheever (Prema Powerteam): “Vallelunga is a great racetrack, featuring several fast and challenging corners. The final corner is my favourite corner. I live in Rome and the circuit is located just half an hour away. So, it’s a true home event for me and I want to use this opportunity to work my way up in the FIA Formula 3 European Championship standings. I have to admit that I used to have bad luck at Vallelunga, in my career to date, but I hope that I will be able to make and end to this streak of bad luck, now.”