Fratelli Auriana Enters One of Three Known Models
as the Team Goes After Second Consecutive Title
New York, New York, May 18, 2006 – Sports car racing team Fratelli Auriana has entered a very rare Stanguellini Delfino Formula Junior, made in 1962, in the 2006 Grand Prix de Monaco Historique, which will be held on May 21 following practice sessions on May 20, the weekend before the Formula One Grand Prix de Monaco. Team Fratelli Auriana won the biennial Grand Prix Historique in 2004.
The biennial event is a retrospective of the golden age of car racing. It takes place on the famous street circuit throughout Monaco that has hardly changed since the first grand prix race in Monaco on April 14, 1929. The event is organized by the Automobile Club of Monaco and is conducted under the auspices of HRH Prince Albert II.
The Grand Prix Historique is one of the world’s premiere Formula Junior events. The Formula Junior class came to life thanks to the charismatic Italian count, gentleman-driver and enthusiastic journalist Giovannino “Johnny” Lurani. It was the first international Formula conceived to offer young aspiring Grand Prix drivers an economic single seater which used the mechanics of mass produced cars.
The first two years of this new series, 1958 and 1959, saw the domination of the Italian Stanguellini single seaters. They were front-engined and used Fiat components, for which the manufacturer Stanguellini was also the official dealer in Modena. The Stanguellini’s were displaced in the winners circle by the British Cooper, Lola and Lotus single seaters with rear mid-engined configuration: these manufacturers had greater experience with this layout, which they themselves had brought to Formula one. In fact the 1961 season demonstrated without a shadow of a doubt that this rear mid-engined format was the required path to success. Thus, at the end of 1961, Stanguellini found himself with no choice but to tackle this technical challenge and set to work on a rear mid-engined car into which he poured all his experience and considerable capital. A noted feature of the rear of the Delfino – the name comes from its characteristic nose shape- was its high exhaust.
Only three Stanguellini Delfino Formula Juniors were built. One is exhibited at the Stanguellini museum in Modena. Frattelli Auriana’s historic car consultants in 2005 hunted down a second Delfino, which for years had been forlorn and forgotten in a Florence garage, where they found it covered in dust. It has been completely dismantled and reassembled with exacting attention to detail. On Sunday, May 21, the red Italian single seater will make its roaring return to the track in the hopes of challenging, hopefully with success this time, its British-built contemporaries.
Fratelli Auriana is owned by Lawrence Auriana, co-founder and portfolio manager of the Federated Kaufmann Fund. He is also Chairman of Columbus Citizens Foundation, which in 2004 honored Mario Andretti as Grand Marshal of New York City’s Columbus Day Parade. During the past four years the Parade has featured vintage cars of Italian design from the Fratelli Auriana collection. Mr. Auriana is of Italian ancestry and is a passionate collector of 20th century Italian movie posters and Italian race cars.
In 2004 his Stanguellini Formula Junior won the prestigious Grand Prix Historique du Monaco, then restricted to front-engined cars in the hands of Joe Colasacco, who thus followed in the virtual footsteps of Michael May the winner there in 1959 in an identical Stanguellini Formula Junior. Knowing that the 2006 edition, due to take place next Sunday on the tortuous streets of the Principality, would be open to all Formula juniors built until the end of 1963, including this time the rear mid-engined cars, Mr. Auriana decided he would attempt to be present this year with a Stanguellini Delfino, a car he had never seen but which had struck his imagination with its aerodynamic and elegant lines.