The Abarth 2018 competition season: circuit racing, rallying and young drivers
- Abarth 2018’s racing plans include speed and rallying.
- Abarth 124 rally is a major player, not only in Italy but also abroad, with the new “Abarth 124 rally Selenia International Challenge” and incentives for competition in the FIA R-GT Cup and the national championships to be held in Europe.
- The Abarth Selenia Trophy will be held for the 10th time with the Abarth 695 Assetto Corse Evoluzione and Abarth 500 Assetto Corse cars.
- Mouth-watering prizes for all trophies.
- Special focus on Under 18 drivers in the Abarth Selenia Trophy and the F4 powered by Abarth championships in Italy and Germany.
At the Abarth Selenia 2017 Trophy awards ceremony, held at Officine Abarth, Luca Napolitano, Head of EMEA Fiat and Abarth Brand, and Fabio Migliavacca, head of Racing, presented the Abarth 124 spider to the winner of the Abarth 124 rally Selenia Trophy, Fabrizio Andolfi Junior, and the cash prizes to the Under 23 winner, Andrea Modanesi, and the winner of the Abarth Selenia Trophy racing-circuit competition, Cosimo Barberini.
The occasion was also the ideal opportunity to present the Brand’s racing plans for 2018, concentrated with regard to rallying on an ambitious international schedule involving the FIA R-GT Cup, the European Championship and the national series in the various European countries, and with regard to circuit racing, on the Abarth Selenia Trophy and the Italian and German F4 championships.
Abarth 124 rally Selenia International Challenge
The chief innovation is the international scope of the Abarth promotional championships, which take in the top events in the rallying calendar, taking the Scorpion brand onto some of Europe’s harshest, toughest roads.
After its impressive debut in 2017, which won the Abarth 124 rally the Italian and Spanish titles in its class, Abarth has decided to aim high, assigning prizes and offering incentives to compete in the top international championships, through the Abarth 124 rally International Challenge.
The biggest prizes are on offer for competitors in the FIA R-GT Cup: the overall winner will receive an Abarth 124 rally, while the best-in-class in each of the other 4 races will receive 15.000 Euro, with 12.000 Euro to second and 10.000 Euro to third places. The participation grant is 3.000 Euro.
The FIA R-GT Cup championship comprises 5 events, one of which, the Montecarlo Rallye, has already taken place. The races still to be run are the Rally Tour de Corse (from 6 to 8 April), the Rally Roma Capitale (from 20 to 22 July), the Rally Barum in the Czech Republic (from 24 to 26 August) and the Rallye International du Valais, in Switzerland (18-20 October).
There are tempting prizes to be won in the European Championship, which has a schedule of 8 prestige events: Rally Acores (22-24 March), Rally Islas Canarias (3-5 May), Acropolis Rally in Greece (1-3 June), Cyprus Rally (15-17 June), Rally di Roma Capitale (20-22 July), Rally Barum in the Czech Republic (24-26 August), Rally of Poland (21-23 September) and Rally Liepaja in Latvia (12-14 October). Overall victory in the R-Gt class is worth 25.000 Euro, added to which there are the race prizes (up to a maximum of 5) of 12.000 Euro to the winner, 9.000 to second place and 7.000 to third. The participation grant is 2.000 Euro.
There are also excellent prizes for those who compete in their respective national championships within the EU, in the R-GT class. The victor will collect a final prize of 20.000 Euro, while success in each race will bring a prize of 10.000 Euro, with 7.000 Euro for second place and 5.000 for third. The participation grant is 1.000 Euro.
In 2017, Abarth 124 rally won the R-GT class in the Italian Championships, with Fabrizio Andolfi Jr, and in Spain, with Alvaro Muñiz Mora, demonstrating outstanding reliability and competitiveness in its very first season: Andolfi finished all 10 races he took part in (7 valid for the 124 Rally Selenia Trophy, together with the Rally di Romagna, the Rally San Marino on unpaved roads and the Rallye du Valais), winning his class 8 times and achieving very impressive results. Another fine demonstration of the Abarth spider’s potential came very recently in the Montecarlo Rallye, where Andrea Nucita and Marco Vozzo recorded an incredible 4th best time overall – amongst the official WRCs – in the event’s toughest special test stage, held in extreme conditions with show and ice. Making good use of the electronic engine and traction control commands, the Italian driver showed that difficult conditions bring out the best in this rear-wheel-drive car, helping to make the racing speciality even more spectacular.
The Abarth Selenia Trophy on the circuits
The Abarth Selenia Trophy, being held for the tenth time this year. A real record, considering that the car used ever since the beginning has been the Abarth 500 Assetto Corse, joined in 2012 by the Abarth 695 Assetto Corse, further upgraded in 2014 to increase its power to 215 HP, delivering performances of absolute excellence, and genuine thrills for spectators.
Drivers can compete in the Abarth 2018 Trophy in either the Abarth 695 Assetto Corse Evoluzione or the Abarth 500 Assetto Corse, in separate classes. There is a special focus on young drivers from 16 to 18 years of age, who are able to take part in the championship this time, thanks to an agreement with Acisport which helps these budding sportsmen and women to win their racing licences by running special test sessions for them. There will be a specific class for women drivers.
The Abarth Selenia Trophy season consists of 7 races, 2 of them abroad. This championship has taken on increasingly international connotations, attracting a large number of foreign drivers. For example, the 2017 season winner was Italian driver Cosimo Barberini, ahead of Juuso Pajuranta from Finland, Joakim Darbom from Sweden and Kuzey Eroldu from Turkey.
The prizes for the championship winners are large: 45,000 Euro for the winner, 15,000 for second and 7,500 for third place. The winner of the Abarth 500 Assetto Corse class will receive 10,000 Euro, with 5000 Euro for second and 2500 for third. Race prizes are awarded to the first five to finish in each race (14 races at 7 meetings): specifically, the overall winner will receive 2000 Euro, with 800 Euro for the winner of the Abarth 500 Assetto Corse class, 500 Euro for the first Gentleman and 500 Euro for the first Lady.
The Abarth Selenia Trophy season consists of 7 meetings of two races each, two of them held abroad. The first race will take place on 29 April on the Imola circuit, followed by the meetings at Paul Ricard (France) on 13 May, the Red Bull Ring (Austria) on 10 June, Misano (24 June), Mugello (15 July), Vallelunga (16 September) and Monza (7 October).
Each of these events will be attended by a brand spokesman from the world of show-business, who will bring sparkle to the entire weekend by taking part in both races at the wheel of an Abarth 695 Assetto Corse Evoluzione.
There is a novelty in the formula of each event with the introduction of a “superpole” qualifying session for the best 8 in the normal practice session.
The championship enrolment fees (7500 Euro for Abarth 695 Assetto Corse Evoluzione and 5500 for Abarth 500 Assetto Corse) include an array of services: paddock setup, spare part service on the race track with presence of technicians for advice and hospitality area with catering dedicated to crews and teams. Media visibility will be high, with a dedicated press and TV office in addition to activities on the most popular social media. Under 18s and Lady drivers will participate in the championship free of charge.
Formula 4 in Italy, Germany, Northern Europe and the Middle East
Given the outstanding success experienced in Italy and Germany over the past seasons, Abarth has decided to support the fourth edition of the F4 Championship in Germany and to reconfirm its involvement in the Italian Championship as sponsor and official engine supplier.
The 1.4 Turbo t-Jet engine with 160 HP, derived from the one fitted on the street-legal 595 and used on the Abarth cars competing in the Abarth Trophies, will be equipping all the cars made by the Italian manufacturer Tatuus again this year. Last season, more than 40 very young drivers competed in the German Championship and over 30 in the Italian one.
A championship will be held in the Northern European states and another in the Middle East with the same model of car.
Abarth Selenia Trophy
29 April – Imola
13 May – Paul Ricard (France)
10 June – Red Bull Ring (Austria)
24 June – Misano Adriatico
15 July – Mugello
16 September – Vallelunga
7 October – Monza
FIA European Rally Championship
22-24 March – Rally Acores (Portugal)
3-5 May – Rally Islas Canarias (Spain)
1-3 June – Acropolis Rally (Greece)
15-17 June – Cyprus Rally (Cyprus)
20-22 July – Rally Roma Capitale (Italy)
24-26 August – Barum Rally (Bulgaria)
21-23 September – Rally of Poland (Poland)
12-14 October – Rally Liapaja (Latvia)
FIA R-GT CUP
22-28 January – Montecarlo Rallye
6-8 April – Tour de Corse (France)
20-22 July – Rally Roma Capitale (Italy)
24-26 August – Barum Rally (Czech Republic)
18-20 October – Rallye du Valais (Switzerland)
Italian F4 Championship powered by Abarth
22 April – Adria International Raceway
13 May – Paul Ricard (France)
3 June – Monza
17 June – Misano Adriatico
29 July – Imola
16 September – Vallelunga
28 October – Mugello
ADAC F4 Championship powered by Abarth
13 April – Oschersleben
18 May – Lausitzring
8 June – Red Bull Ring
3 August – Nurburgring
7 September – Sachsenring
21 September – Hockenheim
Turin, 8 February 2018