The Ferrari Challenge is a single-marque motorsport championship that was created in 1993 for owners of the 348 Berlinetta who wanted to become involved in racing. It now encompasses three official championships in the United States, Asia-Pacific, and Europe. Competitors from each series are brought together at the annual World Finals (Finali Mondiali) event. From 2007-10, the Ferrari Challenge exclusively used the Ferrari F430 model. 2011 saw the introduction of the 458 Challenge with the 458 Challenge Evoluzione following in 2014. In 2018 Ferrari introduced the 488 Challenge.
|Category||One-make racing by Ferrari|
|Official website||Official website|
Currently there are three distinct series, but in 2001, the number of championships peaked at five, with three in Europe, one in the United States, and one in Japan. Since 2001, the Ferrari Challenge is managed by Ferrari's Corse Clienti department ("customer racing").
The now defunct Ferrari Challenge Italy used a two-class format in which distinguished between professional competition drivers in the Trofeo Pirelli (lit. "Pirelli Trophy") and amateur "gentleman drivers" in the Coppa Shell (lit. "Shell Cup"). This format has now been transferred to the Europe Challenge series. It was originally launched in 1993, with backing from Pirelli. Its popularity has resulted in a 2007 entry list of ten teams represented by 37 drivers. The Challenge Italy series is now merged with the European Challenge-series.
Like the Challenge Italy, the European series is a two-class championship. For the 2012 calendar it contains 7 races, with 4 of them being held on Italian circuits. This is done in sync with the Italian series now merged into the European. The remaining 3 races are held at Hungaroring, Spa-Francorchamps, and Silverstone. The European Challenge is by far the largest series, with between 50–55 entrants for the 2012 season.
The North American also features the Trofeo Pirelli and Coppa Shell class system. This championship was inaugurated in 1994. It is organized by Ferrari North America and sanctioned by IMSA. The 2012 season consists of 7 events in the US and Canada. The 2012 grid of the FCNA includes 20 drivers, making it the smallest Challenge-series worldwide in terms of entrants.
The Asia-Pacific is the most recent of the Challenge series since the 2011 season, inaugurated in combination with the growing interest and sales for Ferrari in Asia. The season encompasses events in Japan, China, Malaysia, Australia, New Zealand and Singapore. The Asia-Pacific also features the Trofeo Pirelli and Coppa Shell class system. Grid is made up of 35 to 40 drivers for the 2012 season.
The Ferrari Challenge has inspired other national club-level championships that are not affiliated with Ferrari S.p.A. itself. The 'Ferrari Scandinavia Challenge' is an unofficial championship with events in Sweden, and Denmark. It was created in 2001 and is not exclusive to the latest Challenge cars, with many classes so that models all the way back to the 348 are eligible for entry. The UK has a similar unofficial series comprising three championships for older cars that is organised by the Ferrari Owners' Club. In recent years, a club championship open to all Challenge cars har been organized in the US under the name of Ferrari Club Racing Championship/Association as an alternative to the Ferrari Challenge North America, which many competitors felt was too expensive. The FCRA hosts 6 rounds during a season.
From 2014, the major Ferrari Challenge series (Europe, North America and Asia-Pacific) have combined to host a World Final common event for all championships. This event culminates in a race containing as many of the competitiors across all series in both Trofeo Pirelli and Coppa Shell as can fit. The following table represents the winners of each event:
|Year||Circuit||Trofeo Pirelli||Coppa Shell||Source|
|2014||Yas Marina Circuit||Pro: Max Blancardi
Pro-Am: Ricardo Pérez de Lara
|Am: Massimiliano Bianchi|||
|2015||Mugello Circuit||Pro: Matteo Santoponte
Pro-Am: Alessandro Vezzoni
|Am: Erich Prinoth|||
|2016||Daytona International Speedway||Pro: Carlos Kauffman
Pro-Am: Sam Smeeth
|Am: Thomas Löfflad|||
|2017||Mugello Circuit||Pro: Fabio Leimer
Pro-Am: Jens Liebhauser
|Am: Johnny Laursen|||
|2018||Autodromo Nazionale Monza||Pro: Nicklas Nielsen
Pro-Am: Fabienne Wohlwend
|Am: Christophe Hurni|||
A brand new 458 Challenge will cost around $300,000 in the US. The only options available on the car is the color and size of the passenger seat. All new 458C's come delivered on rain tyres. Racing in the Ferrari Challenge North America series will cost roughly around $15,000–$20,000 per race weekend if the car is run by a dealer team, which they in most cases are. This includes crew support, a fee to Ferrari North America, transportation and living costs plus additional spares. The fee to FNA is approximately $2,000–$3,000 which gives the competitors fuel and tires. Privateer entries can be run at a slightly smaller cost as there will be no dealer fee included.
The Ferrari Challenge uses a single model from the manufacturer's road car range, suitably modified to make them safe for competition use. The lineage began with the 348 Berlinetta in 1993, followed by its successor, the F355 Berlinetta, and the 360 Modena was introduced in 2000. The F355 remained eligible during 2000 and 2001. The 360CS (Challenge Stradale) version was the first competition-orientated version to be marketed to the public. The F430 Challenge was phased in during a transitional year in 2006, with the same being the case for the 458 Challenge in 2011. The F430 introduced carbon-ceramic brake discs for the first time and gained 80bhp over the 360CS, which has reduced lap times to approximately three seconds shy of the F430 GT2. The current 458 Challenge is the first to have driver controlled aids such as traction control, stability management and adjustable ABS brakes.
The 488 Challenge is the most recent in a line of Ferraris used in the Ferrari Challenge series. The lineage is as follows:
All the cars used in the series are track only, although some 360 Challenges have been made road legal in Australia, with extensive modifications. However, due to new legislation, this is not possible anymore. The 360 Challenge used in the series should not be confused with the 360 Challenge Stradale, which was a road-legal, track day oriented version of the 360, similar to the F430 Scuderia.
In 2008, System 3's Mark Cale created Ferrari Challenge: Trofeo Pirelli, the official game of the Ferrari Challenge featuring the licensed Ferrari F430 Challenge Italian, European and North American 2007 series.
In 2012 Ferrari Challenge in Test Drive: Ferrari Racing Legends.
Aleksey Igorevich Vasilyev (Russian: Алексе́й И́горевич Васи́льев, IPA: [ɐlʲɪˈksʲej ˈigərʲɪvʲɪtɕ vɐˈsʲɪlʲɪf], born 13 January 1972) is a Russian auto racing driver.Campeonato Sudamericano de GT
Campeonato Sudamericano de GT (Southamerican GT Championship) previously known as GT3 Brasil Championship, GT Brasil and Campeonato Brasileiro de GT was a sports car racing series based in the Brazil organized by the SRO Latin America.Enzo Potolicchio
Vicente "Enzo" Potolicchio (born 7 August 1968 in Caracas) is a Venezuelan racing driver and businessman, who competes in the FIA World Endurance Championship and Rolex Sports Car Series for Starworks Motorsport. He won the 2012 24 Hours of Le Mans and 2012 12 Hours of Sebring, both in the LMP2 class.Fabienne Wohlwend
Fabienne Wohlwend (born 7 November 1997 in Schellenberg) is a female racing driver from Liechtenstein who competes in the W Series.Factory-backed
In motorsports, a factory-backed racing team or driver is one sponsored by a vehicle manufacturer in official competitions. As motorsport competition is an expensive endeavor, some degree of factory support is desired and often necessary for success. The lowest form of factory backing comes in the form of contingency awards, based upon performance, which help to defray the cost of competing. Full factory backing can be often seen in the highest forms of international competition, with major motorsport operations often receiving hundreds of millions of euros to represent a particular manufacturer.
One-make series can also be backed by the factory, notably Ferrari Challenge and Porsche Supercup purely to allow themselves sell their competition specials of their models to customers and to organize series. These series commonly offer prize money and even sometimes a factory drive in an upper-level series.
In lower level racing, support from dealerships and importers may also be referred to as factory backing. In drifting, where factory backed teams are few and far between (Mopar and Pontiac of Formula D for example), works team/drivers are those backed by large or highly established tuning companies, as opposed to those entered by the drivers themselves or smaller and less well-off tuning companies. The advantage to this is drivers can get access to expensive prototype parts provided by the company that are not yet available to customers and in the event of their car being too badly damaged to compete, a back-up car will be available to them.Ferrari 360
The Ferrari 360 (Type F131) is a two-seater, mid-engine, rear wheel drive sports car manufactured by Italian automotive manufacturer Ferrari from 1999 to 2005. It succeeded the Ferrari F355 and was replaced by the Ferrari F430 in 2005.Ferrari F1-2000
The Ferrari F1-2000 was a Formula One racing car designed by Rory Byrne for the 2000 Formula One season. The car was a direct development of the F300 and F399 from the previous two seasons, using the same basic gearbox and a new engine with a wider V-angle (90 degrees vs. 75 degrees in the 048 engine); this new wider angle improved and lowered the centre of gravity of the car. It also featured improved aerodynamics over the F399 most noticeably a flatter underside of the nose area, which put it on par with that year's McLaren MP4/15.Michael Schumacher drove the F1-2000 to his third World Drivers' Title and Ferrari's first for 21 years. It also defended Ferrari's constructors' crown, and signified the start of the team's dominance throughout the first half of the decade.Ferrari F430 Challenge
The Ferrari F430 Challenge is a production-based race car built by Ferrari. The car is directly based on the standard F430 and uses the same 4.3L V8 engine. It was introduced at the 2005 Frankfurt Motor Show to supersede the Ferrari 360 Challenge in the Ferrari Challenge and the Rolex Sports Car racing series.Grand-Am Road Racing
Grand-Am Road Racing or Grand-Am was an auto racing sanctioning body that was established in 1999 to organize road racing competitions in North America. Its primary focus was the Rolex Sports Car Series, an endurance racing championship series. It sanctioned five auto racing series. The series announced in September 2012 that it would be merging with the American Le Mans Series, which had been Grand-Am's main US competitor since its inception. The two series fully merged in 2014 under the banner of the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship, with the International Motor Sports Association.Italian GT Championship
The Italian GT Championship (Campionato Italiano Gran Turismo) is an Italian sports car series founded in 2003 and organized by the Automobile Club d'Italia (ACI) and the Commissione Sportiva Automobilistica Italiana (CSAI). It replaced a previous supercar-based championship which ran from 1992 until 2002 when it was folded due to a lack of entrants. The series borrowed heavily from the international FIA GT Championship in its first few seasons, although additional entries from Ferrari Challenge, Porsche Supercup, and Maserati Trofeo competitors were allowed.
Following the 2006 season, the top GT1 class was dropped from the championship, leaving competitors in the GT2, GT3, and GT Cup classes. GT2 competition is dominated by the Ferrari F430, with several Porsche 911 GT3s as well. The GT3 class features a variety of machines from the FIA GT3 European Championship, from Aston Martin, Chrysler and Lamborghini, while the GT Cup class is once again made up of Ferrari Challenge and Porsche Supercup cars.Jeff Segal
Jeffrey Segal (born 27 April 1985 in Philadelphia, PA) is an American racing driver who competes in the United SportsCar Championship for Michael Shank Racing. He is a two-time Rolex Sports Car Series GT class champion and winner of the 2014 24 Hours of Daytona in GT Daytona.Level 5 Motorsports
Level 5 Motorsports was an American auto racing team founded in 2006 by racing driver, technology entrepreneur and convicted racketeer Scott Tucker, currently serving a sentence of 16 years and 8 months in federal prison. Level 5 Motorsports competed in the United SportsCar Championship and Ferrari Challenge, having won multiple American Le Mans Series championships and endurance races including the 24 Hours of Daytona, 12 Hours of Sebring and Petit Le Mans. Level 5 Motorsports began with Tucker competing in the Sports Car Club of America and Ferrari Challenge Series. In 2007, while continuing with SCCA and Ferrari Challenge, Tucker entered several events in the Rolex Sports Car Series and Koni Challenge Series with co-driver Ed Zabinski. Tucker also competed in the IMSA GT3 Cup Challenge.Loris Kessel
Loris Kessel (1 April 1950 – 15 May 2010) was a racing driver from Switzerland. He was born in Lugano and died in Montagnola following a long illness.
He participated in six Formula One World Championship Grands Prix, debuting on 2 May 1976. He scored no championship points.
In 1976, he drove a Brabham for RAM, and in 1977 he drove his own Apollon-Williams, although this car was not a success.
Kessel ran a series of car dealerships in Switzerland and his own racing team, competing in Ferrari Challenge series in Italy and the main European series. The team also competes in the FIA GT3 European Championship with the same car.Plamen Kralev
Plamen Simeonov Kralev (Bulgarian: Пламен Симеонов Кралев, born 22 February 1973 in Sofia) is a Bulgarian racing driver and businessman. He is the only Bulgarian driver who has participated in FIA Formula 2 Championship, 24 Hours of Le Mans, Le Mans series, ADAC GT Masters, International GT Open, FIA European Touring Car Cup, Italian Touring Car Championship and Ferrari Challenge. Kralev also has participated in the FIA GT3 European Championship, and in the GP2 Asia Series.He is now competing in the Italian Touring Car Championship with AUDI RS3 LMS.Proteam Motorsport
Proteam Motorsport is an Italian auto racing team based in Arezzo that was set up by former driver Valmiro Presenzini in 1997. They are best known for their efforts in the FIA World Touring Car Championship. Their time in the WTCC has seen them become the most successful independent team in the championship, winning three Independent Team titles in 1996, 2007 and 2008. Initially the team would enter Renault related events across Europe. Presenzini himself competed in The Renault Clio Cup, Renault 5 Turbo Cup and the Megane cup. After success in these series, they started a programme for the European Touring Car Championship, which they entered in 2003. They have entered cars in the Italian Clio Cup, the Ferrari Challenge, and as of 2006, the Italian Superturismo Championship with driver Cristian Ricciarini.Scott Tucker (businessman)
Scott Tucker (born May 5, 1962 in Kansas City, Missouri) is an American convicted racketeer, former businessman and amateur racing driver.
In 2001, Tucker founded an online business, AMG Services, that made payday loans even in states where these high-interest, low-principal loans were restricted or illegal. The business, which generated over $3.5 billion in revenue from just 2008 to June 2013, ultimately made loans to at least 4.5 million Americans. When state regulators tried to shut down his operations, Tucker made deals with Native American tribes to claim ownership of his business and invoke sovereign immunity from state courts. In February 2016, Tucker was arrested and indicted on federal criminal charges filed in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York in relation to his ownership and controlling role in various payday lending operations that were found to have charged illegal interest rates in violation of RICO and TILA statutes. Tucker was convicted of making illegal payday loans and of racketeering in October 2017; he is currently serving a sentence of 16 years and 8 months in federal prison.Tucker began his racing career in 2006, most notably competing in the American Le Mans Series and United SportsCar Championship for his Level 5 Motorsports.The story of Tucker's fall from grace is chronicled in the second episode of the Netflix series Dirty Money entitled "Payday".Scuderia Corsa
Scuderia Corsa is an American automotive racing team with teams competing in the IMSA SportsCar Championship, Pirelli World Challenge and Ferrari Challenge in North America. Founded in 2012 by Giacomo Mattioli and Art Zafiropoulo, the team has the main purpose of supporting the racing needs of Ferrari clients, starting from customizable track-day events to the Ferrari Challenge Series to the most prestigious GT endurance racing such as the legendary 24 Hours of Le Mans. Scuderia Corsa is the racing arm of Mattioli Automotive Group, inclusive of Ferrari Beverly Hills, Ferrari Silicon Valley, Ferrari South Bay and Ferrari Westlake.Supercar Challenge (video game)
Supercar Challenge is a simulation racing video game released for the PlayStation 3 in September 2009, developed by Eutechnyx and published by System 3, the same company that produced 2008's Ferrari Challenge Trofeo Pirelli. The game includes more than 40 cars including Ferraris and the Bugatti Veyron and Aston Martin DBR9 and 22 tracks including the Nürburgring (Grand Prix section) and the Silverstone Circuit. The game was re-released with an improved game engine under the title Absolute Supercars in 2012.