Autodromo Enzo & Dino Ferrari
Via Fratelli Rosselli 2
40026 Imola (Bo)
Ticket sales: 0039-0542-34116
Local tourist info:0039-0542-602207
If Valentino Rossi ever wins a GP at Imola while riding a Ducati, you’ll hear the roar from China – the firm’s Bologna factory is only 20 miles away from the circuit. From Bologna take the S9 trunk road from the city directly to Imola and then follow the signs (or the streams of fans). As Italy goes it’s not the most outstanding area, but any motorsport viewing is a pleasure in Italy so you should enjoy it nonetheless.
500 GP: Alex Barros, Brazil (Honda NSR) 1:49.33 – 100.86mph (1999)
250 GP: Tetsuya Harada, Japan (Aprilia RSV) 1:51.87 – 98.56mph (1997)
125 GP: Valentino Rossi, Italy (Aprilia) 1:58.49 – 93.06mph (1997)
SBK: No SBK records
Though the track lost much of its appeal to fans after the death of F1’s Ayrton Senna and Roland Ratzenburg in 1994 – increased run-off pushed crowd areas further from the action – there are still some good places to watch, particularly the latter parts of the track and the final action-packed chicane. Imola is renowned among riders for being hellishly bumpy in some parts, so suspension set-up is critical and riders who don’t mind their bike bucking around a bit tend to fair better. Grip levels are generally good with extensive F1 car testing at Imola leaving plenty of rubber on turns, but this can make it treacherous when wet. The reshaping changed the nature of the track too, transforming long fluid combinations of seriously fast turns into distinct sections book-ended by chicanes. All this means that a bike with good acceleration and brakes is vital, and that crashes are now MORE likely to happen than they did before.