Rial Racing

Rial is a German producer of light alloy wheels and rims,[1] and was a Formula One constructor competing in the 1988 and 1989 seasons. Founded in the 1970s as a wheel rim producer, the company was bought by Günter Schmid, ex-owner of the ATS wheels company in 1987. Schmid followed the same strategy as he had at ATS, advertising the Rial wheel brand by entering Formula One as a constructor. Rial participated in 32 Grands Prix, entering a total of 48 cars. They scored six championship points, finishing a highest of ninth in the constructors championship in 1988.[2] After leaving Formula One at the end of the 1989 season, the Rial Racing division was closed, and the company did not race again. Rial continues to manufacture wheels and rims from its factory in Fußgönheim.

Rial racing logo
Full nameRial Racing
BaseFußgönheim, Rhineland-Palatinate, Germany
Founder(s)Günter Schmid
Noted staffGünter Schmid, Gustav Brunner, Stefan Fober
Noted driversItaly Andrea de Cesaris
Germany Christian Danner
Formula One World Championship career
First entry1988 Brazilian Grand Prix
Races entered32
0 (best finish: 9th, 1988)
Race victories0 (best finish: 4th, 1988 Detroit Grand Prix and 1989 United States Grand Prix)
Pole positions0
Fastest laps0
Final entry1989 Australian Grand Prix

Racing history

Günter Schmid, ex-owner of the ATS company that competed in Formula One for eight years, bought Rial in 1987,[3] ahead of the reduction in power of the turbo-engines in 1988,[4] and set up a Formula One team at Rial's base in Fußgönheim. With old-ATS designer Gustav Brunner, Schmid produced the Rial ARC1, powered by a Cosworth DFZ engine, an updated model of the ubiquitous design of the pre-turbo seasons.[5] The ARC1, nicknamed the "Blue Ferrari" due to the similarities with the Brunner-designed Ferrari F1/87,[4][5] featured a double wishbone pullrod suspension, with shock absorbers innovatively placed horizontally against the chassis.[5] Andrea de Cesaris, with Marlboro sponsorship was hired to drive the car, which proved strong in testing due to a small fuel tank.[4]

At Rial's début race, the 1988 Brazilian Grand Prix, de Cesaris qualified 14th and reached sixth place in the race, but he ran out of fuel seven laps from the end.[4] Mechanical failures occurred during the following races, and Rial twice breached regulations; for working on the car on-track and the drivers head being above the roll bar - necessitating a modification of the car.[5] The fuel tank was again a problem in Canada where de Cesaris ran out of fuel in fifth place; however the next race in Detroit saw Rial finish in fourth place, scoring three points.[6] After the French Grand Prix, the teams performance began to fall, and Brunner left the team after finishing 13th in their home race in Germany. Continuous mechanical problems and the fuel tank contributed to a six-race string of retirements, de Cesaris finishing the season classified 8th in Australia.[5] The team finished in ninth place in the constructors championship, and Andrea de Cesaris was placed fifteenth in the drivers championship.[7]

Rial expanded to two cars ahead of the 1989 season, and with de Cesaris moving to Dallara, German drivers Christian Danner and Volker Weidler were hired to drive the ARC2.[4] Designed by new engineer Stefan Fober, the car was an updated version of the ARC1, with reworked aerodynamics by McLaren designer Bob Bell, and the improved Cosworth DFR engine being worked into the chassis.[5] With turbo-charged engines banned for 1989, the entry list had increased to 39 cars from 20 teams;[8] to accommodate the number of cars a pre-qualifying system was introduced, where the new cars and the teams ranked lowest in the previous season would compete for the 30 spaces available in qualifying, and then for the 26 starters in the race.[8] Danner did not have to pre-qualify, while Weidler driving the new entry had to enter the session.

Danner achieved a 14th place at the opening Brazilian round, before the improving cars of Rial's competitors forced Danner out of qualifying for the next two races, hampered by the older ARC2 chassis.[5] The fifth race, the United States Grand Prix on the Phoenix street circuit, saw Danner finish in fourth place, in a similar attritional race to the year before, giving him the best result of his career. Weidler meanwhile had failed to pre-qualify for any race so far in the season,[5] and following Danner's 8th-place finish in Canada in what was to be Rial's final race start, neither driver qualified for the following Grands Prix, despite both Rial cars being allowed to enter qualifying following the changing of pre-qualifying rankings after the British Grand Prix.[8] At the Hungarian race, where an illegal rear wing saw Weidler's qualifying times deleted,[5] both Fober and Weidler left the team following the blame by Schmid for the imposed fine.[5] Pierre-Henri Raphanel was his replacement, bringing with him new designer Christian van der Pleyn. However the new design team could not improve the ARC2 to qualify for a race,[5] and Danner quit following the Portuguese Grand Prix.[4] Gregor Foitek was brought in for Spain, but a rear wing breakage during qualifying caused an accident destroying his car, and he immediately left the team.[9] Bertrand Gachot took over for the final two races, but neither Raphanel nor Gachot managed to qualify to race, with the outdated car several seconds off the nearest competitors in qualifying.[5] Finishing 13th in the championship,[10] Rial Racing closed down at the end of the year.

Complete Formula One World Championship results

(key) (results in bold indicate pole position; results in italics indicate fastest lap)

Year Chassis Engine Tyres Drivers 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 Points WCC
Italy Andrea de Cesaris Ret Ret Ret Ret 9 4 10 Ret 13 Ret Ret Ret Ret Ret Ret 8
West Germany Christian Danner 14 DNQ DNQ 12 4 8 DNQ DNQ DNQ DNQ DNQ DNQ DNQ
Switzerland Gregor Foitek DNQ
Belgium Bertrand Gachot DNQ DNQ
France Pierre-Henri Raphanel DNQ DNQ DNQ DNQ DNQ DNQ


  1. ^ "Brand – RIAL Leichtmetallfelgen". rial.de. Retrieved 2015-12-27.
  2. ^ "Constructors Championship 1988". Formula1.com. Formula One World Championship. Retrieved 2011-05-23.
  3. ^ "Rial Racing". F1Technical.net. Retrieved 2011-06-02.
  4. ^ a b c d e f "Encyclopedia - Rial". Grandprix.com. Inside F1. Retrieved 2011-05-23.
  5. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l "Rial Profile". Formula One Rejects. 2003-04-25. Retrieved 2011-05-23.
  6. ^ "Rial ARC-01". Chicane F1. Retrieved 2011-05-24.
  7. ^ "1988 season results". Formula1.com. Formula One World Championship. Retrieved 2011-04-23.
  8. ^ a b c Saward, Joe (2002-01-03). "Pre-qualifying". Grandprix.com. Inside F1. Retrieved 2011-05-28.
  9. ^ "Gregor Foitek Profile". Formula One Rejects. 2001-07-07. Retrieved 2011-05-31.
  10. ^ "Constructors Championship 1989". Formula1.com. Formula One World Championship. Retrieved 2011-05-31.
  11. ^ "Results from Formula1.com".

External links

1988 Brazilian Grand Prix

The 1988 Brazilian Grand Prix was a Formula One motor race held on April 3, 1988, at the renamed Autódromo Internacional Nelson Piquet in Rio de Janeiro. Following his 3rd World Drivers' Championship in 1987 the Jacarepaguá Circuit was named after local hero Nelson Piquet. It was the first race of the 1988 Formula One season.

1988 Formula One World Championship

The 1988 FIA Formula One World Championship was the 42nd season of FIA Formula One motor racing. It featured the 1988 Formula One World Championship for Drivers and the 1988 Formula One World Championship for Constructors, which were contested concurrently over a sixteen-race series that commenced on 3 April and ended on 13 November. The World Championship for Drivers was won by Ayrton Senna, and the World Championship for Constructors by McLaren-Honda. Senna and McLaren teammate Alain Prost won fifteen of the sixteen races between them; the only race neither driver won was the Italian Grand Prix, where Ferrari's Gerhard Berger took an emotional victory four weeks after the death of team founder Enzo Ferrari. McLaren's win tally has only been bettered or equalled in seasons with more than sixteen races; their Constructors' Championship tally of 199 points, more than three times that of any other constructor, was also a record until 2002.

1989 Formula One World Championship

The 1989 FIA Formula One World Championship was the 43rd season of FIA Formula One motor racing. It featured the 1989 Formula One World Championship for Drivers and the 1989 Formula One World Championship for Constructors, which were contested concurrently over a sixteen-race series that commenced on 26 March and ended on 5 November. Alain Prost won his third Drivers' Championship, and McLaren won the Constructors' Championship.The Drivers' Championship was decided in controversial circumstances at the penultimate race of the season in Japan, when Prost and teammate Ayrton Senna, who needed to win the race, collided in the closing laps. Prost retired while Senna rejoined the track after a push start and crossed the line first, only to be disqualified for not rejoining the track correctly. This handed Prost the title, his last with McLaren before joining Ferrari for 1990.The season also saw an unprecedented amount of entries with 21 constructors originally entered, fielding a total of 40 cars. However FIRST Racing withdrew from the championship before the opening race, leaving 20 constructors fielding a total of 39 cars, which remains the highest entry in the modern era.

Andrea de Cesaris

Andrea de Cesaris (31 May 1959 – 5 October 2014) was an Italian racing driver. He started 208 Formula One Grands Prix but never won. As a result, he holds the record for the most races started without a race victory. A string of accidents early in his career earned him a reputation for being a fast but wild driver.In 2005 and 2006 he competed in the Grand Prix Masters formula for retired F1 drivers.

De Cesaris died on 5 October 2014 after losing control of his motorcycle on Rome's Grande Raccordo Anulare motorway.

Bertrand Gachot

Bertrand Gachot (born 23 December 1962) is a French former racing driver.

Christian Danner

Christian Danner (born 4 April 1958 in Munich) is a former racing driver from Germany.

Formula One drivers from Switzerland

As of February 2019, there have been 32 drivers from Switzerland who have entered Formula One World Championship Grands Prix motor races, with 22 of them having started a race.

Gregor Foitek

Gregor Foitek (born 27 March 1965) is a Swiss former racing driver. He won the 1986 Swiss Formula 3 Championship. Moving up to Formula 3000 he was widely blamed for causing a race-stopping crash at Brands Hatch in 1988, the restart of which led to a second major crash on the first lap in which Johnny Herbert sustained major leg injuries. Foitek participated in 22 Formula One Grands Prix, debuting on 26 March 1989. He scored no championship points. He later made two CART starts for Foyt Enterprises in 1992 but was knocked out of both races by mechanical issues.

Today, he helps to run Foitek Automobile, a family-run Ferrari and Maserati dealership.

Günter Schmid

Günter Schmid (13 August 1932 – 29 May 2005) was the founder and principal of the Formula One teams ATS and Rial Racing.

Marlboro (cigarette)

Marlboro (US: , UK: ) is an American brand of cigarettes, currently owned and manufactured by Philip Morris USA (a branch of Altria) within the United States, and by Philip Morris International (now separate from Altria) outside the United States. Richmond, Virginia, is the location of the largest Marlboro cigarette manufacturing plant. Marlboro is the global best-selling cigarette brand since 1972. As of 2017, Marlboro had 40% market share in the United States, more than the next 7 competing brands combined.

Pierre-Henri Raphanel

Pierre-Henri Raphanel (born 27 May 1961 in Algiers, Algeria) is a former French racing driver.

He participated in 17 Formula One Grands Prix for Larrousse, Coloni and Rial, debuting on 13 November 1988. He only qualified for one race, the 1989 Monaco Grand Prix, making him the only driver in F1 history whose only race was in the principality.Following his F1 career, he became a factory driver for Toyota, competing in Japan for series such as JTCC and JGTC, for the latter until 2000. After 2006 Raphanel worked as the lead test driver and product specialist for Bugatti and is usually seen demonstrating the Veyron.

Pierre-Henri Raphanel is also the uncle of the French-Algerian driver Julien Gerbi and of the young go-kart driver Arthur Raphanel.

He drove the Bugatti Veyron Super Sport to its maximum speed (431.072 km/h) in Ehra-Lessien in July 2010.


Rial, riyal, or RIAL may refer to:

Rial (surname), a surname (and list of people with the name)

Royal Institution for the Advancement of Learning, McGill University

Rial Racing, a former German Formula One teamVarious currencies named rial or riyal (derived from Spanish/Portuguese real):

Iranian rial, the currency of Iran

Omani rial, the currency of Oman

Yemeni rial, the currency of Yemen

Moroccan rial, a former currency of Morocco

Tunisian rial, a former currency of Tunisia

The Hejaz riyal

The Qatari riyal

The Saudi riyal

A popular nickname for the 20-piastres Egyptian coin

A popular nickname for the 5-santimat Moroccan coin

Rial ARC1

The Rial ARC1 was a Formula One racing car manufactured and raced by Rial Racing for the 1988 Formula One season. It was powered by a Cosworth DFZ V8 engine. Its best finish was at the 1988 United States Grand Prix when Andrea de Cesaris drove it to fourth place.

Rial ARC2

The Rial ARC2 was a Formula One racing car manufactured and raced by Rial Racing for the 1989 Formula One season. It was powered by a Cosworth DFR V8 engine. Its best finish was at the 1989 United States Grand Prix when Christian Danner drove it to fourth place.

Volker Weidler

Volker Weidler (born 18 March 1962 in Heidelberg) is a former racing driver from Germany, best known for winning the 24 Hours of Le Mans in 1991.

2019 season


This page is based on a Wikipedia article written by authors (here).
Text is available under the CC BY-SA 3.0 license; additional terms may apply.
Images, videos and audio are available under their respective licenses.