Here are all the facts and statistics you need to know about Imola ahead of Formula 1’s return to the circuit at the 2020 Emilia Romagna Grand Prix!
🇮🇹 RACE WINNERS
27 Formula 1 races have been held at Imola. All 27 races were held in consecutive seasons, from 1980 to 2006. From those 27 races, there have been fourteen different winners.
Michael Schumacher holds the record for the most wins at this circuit, having won at Imola on seven occasions – over double the number of wins of any other driver. Williams and Ferrari are tied for most wins for a constructor at Imola, having each won at the circuit on eight occasions. Meanwhile, Ferrari are tied with Renault as the most successful engine manufacturer at the circuit. Both Ferrari and Renault engines have won at Imola on eight occasions.
Germany is the most successful nation at Imola, with nine wins. All nine of Germany’s wins at the circuit have been taken by Schumachers, with Michael winning seven times and Ralf being victorious twice.
Nelson Piquet, Ayrton Senna, Damon Hill and Michael Schumacher are the four drivers to have taken consecutive wins at Imola. Schumacher is the only driver to have taken consecutive wins at the circuit on separate occasions. He also holds the record for most consecutive victories at the track, having won three races in a row in 2002, 2003 and 2004.
Brabham, Ferrari, McLaren and Williams are the only teams to have taken consecutive wins at Imola. Williams and Ferrari share the record for most consecutive wins at the track. Williams won three races in a row between 1995 and 1997, while Ferrari won three races in a row between 2002 and 2004.
Ferrari, McLaren and Williams are the only teams to have recorded 1-2 finishes at the circuit. McLaren have the most 1-2 finishes at the circuit, with their drivers finishing first and second in 1988, 1989 and 1991. Ferrari are the last team to record a 1-2 finish at the track, doing so in 2002.
Elio de Angelis holds the record for the largest win margin at Imola. He’s the only driver to have won by over a lap at the circuit, doing so for Lotus in 1985. The smallest win margin at the circuit is 0.215 seconds, which is the gap by which Fernando Alonso took victory in 2005. The 1982 San Marino Grand Prix is the only other Imola race which has been decided by less than a second.
From the last ten races at Imola, the average win margin has been 4.738 seconds.
Of the 27 races held at Imola, nine have been won from pole position, while seventeen have been won from the front row of the grid. All of the last five Imola races have been won from the front row of the grid.
No wins have been recorded from further back than fifth on the grid at Imola. Nelson Piquet won the first two races at the track, both from fifth on the grid.
🇮🇹 ON THE PODIUM
A total of 33 drivers have finished in the top three in a Formula 1 race held at Imola. No one has more podium finishes at the circuit than Michael Schumacher, who finished in the top three twelve times – that’s twice as many times as any other driver has finished on the podium here.
Ferrari have taken the most podium finishes of any team at the circuit. They have a total of 24 podiums at the track, and have finished in the top three in every race at the circuit since 1994.
Germany is the nation with the most podium finishes at the Nurburgring, with German drivers finishing in the top three on 15 occasions.
Kimi Raikkonen is the only driver on the 2020 grid to have previously finished on the podium at Imola. He did so in 2003, when he finished as runner-up.
The lowest grid position from which a podium finish has been recorded at Imola is sixteenth. This happened in 1991, when JJ Lehto finished in third place having started sixteenth.
There have been five races at Imola where the three drivers at the front of the grid finished on the podium. It happened in 1988, 1992, 2000, 2002 and 2004. The top three finished in the order which they started in 1988, 1992 and 2002.
There is yet to be a race at Imola where none of the top three starters have gone on to finish on the podium.
Twelve drivers have taken pole position at Imola. Ayrton Senna holds the record for most pole positions at the track, having set the fastest time on eight occasions.
McLaren have more poles than any other team at Imola, having taken pole on nine occasions.
Senna’s tally of eight poles makes Brazil the most successful nation in qualifying at Imola. In addition to Senna’s poles, Nelson Piquet also took pole at the circuit in 1984.
Kimi Raikkonen is the only driver on the 2020 grid to have previously taken pole position at Imola. He set the pace at the 2005 San Marino Grand Prix.
Rene Arnoux, Ayrton Senna, Michael Schumacher and Mika Hakkinen are the four drivers who have taken consecutive pole positions at Imola. Senna has the record for most consecutive poles at the track, having taken pole on all seven visits to the circuit between 1985 and 1991. Meanwhile, Schumacher is the only driver to have taken consecutive poles on multiple occasions at the circuit.
Lotus, McLaren, Williams and Ferrari are the team to have taken consecutive poles at the track. McLaren hold the record for the most successive poles at Imola, with four. It’s a feat they’ve achieved twice; between 1988 & 1991 and between 1998 & 2001.
Nigel Mansell is the only driver to have taken pole by over a second at Imola. He did so at the 1992 San Marino Grand Prix, taking pole by 1.053 seconds.
Pole at the circuit has been decided by less than a tenth of a second on eight occasions; most recently in 2003. The smallest pole margin here came in 1995, when Michael Schumacher set the fastest time by just 0.008 seconds.
From the last ten F1 races at Imola, the average pole margin has been 0.188 seconds.
🇮🇹 SUNDAY STATS
The Safety Car has been deployed only twice at Imola. The first time was at the 1994 San Marino Grand Prix due to a collision on the starting grid and the second was in the most recent race at the circuit, in 2006, due to a collision between Christijan Albers and Yuji Ide.
Four races at Imola have been affected by rain. The 1981 San Marino Grand Prix was held in the wet, while the 1991, 1993 and 1995 races were all held in drying conditions.
Seventeen drivers have set the fastest lap of a race at Imola. Michael Schumacher has the most fastest laps of anyone, having set the Sunday pace on five occasions.
The fewest number of cars to finish a Formula 1 race at Imola is five. This has happened twice – in 1982 and 1985.
In total, 693 cars have entered a round of the World Championship at Imola. Of those, 635 qualified for races and 296 reached the chequered flag.
There have been seven Did Not Starts recorded at the Nurburgring. The most recent was for Jarno Trulli, who failed to start the 1997 San Marino Grand Prix.
The 1989 and 1994 San Marino Grands Prix are the only races at Imola which have been red-flagged. They are also the only two races at the circuit which have failed to run to full distance.
In total, 1,644 Grand Prix racing laps have been completed at Imola.
🇮🇹 CHAMPIONSHIP GLORY
From the 27 races held at Imola, the winner of the race has gone on to win that year’s title on thirteen occasions. It happened in five of the last six years that the San Marino Grand Prix was held.
No Drivers’ Championships have been decided at Imola, but Williams secured their first Constructors’ Championship at the track in 1980. Since then, there have been only four occasions where the leader of the championship after Imola failed to win that season’s title.
The Drivers’ Championship has been tied after a race at Imola on three occasions – in 1983, 1986 and 2001. The Constructors’ Championship has been tied after an Imola race twice – in 1987 and 1995.
After graduating from the University of Hull in 2015 with a First Class honours degree in English Language and Literature, Nicky Haldenby, a lifelong fan of Formula 1, founded the Lights Out F1 Blog in 2016. Now in its fifth season, the blog has become a firm fan-favourite, delving deep into the sport’s history books and lifting the cover on unusual F1 statistics. Nicky also writes at F1Destinations and GPDestinations. In 2017 and 2018, he wrote for Badger GP. Nicky is also the host of the F1 Rewind Podcast and can be heard as the resident stats man on the 2 Soft Compounds Podcast.