Vitantonio Liuzzi

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Vitantonio Liuzzi
Vitantonio Liuzzi 2011 Malaysia.jpg
Born (1980-08-06) 6 August 1980 (age 34)
Formula One World Championship career
Nationality Italy Italian
Active years 20052007, 20092011
Teams Red Bull, Toro Rosso, Force India, HRT
Races 81 (80 starts)
Championships 0
Wins 0
Podiums 0
Career points 26
Pole positions 0
Fastest laps 0
First race 2005 San Marino Grand Prix
Last race 2011 Brazilian Grand Prix

Vitantonio "Tonio" Liuzzi (born 6 August 1980[1]) is an Italian race driver who formerly raced in Formula One for the Red Bull, Toro Rosso, Force India and HRT teams. He has homes in Lugano, Switzerland[2] and Pescara, Italy.

Karting[edit]

Born in Locorotondo, BA, Apulia, Liuzzi, like many auto racing drivers, began his career in kart racing (at age 9). He won the 1993 Italian Karting Championship, and in 1995 took second in the Karting World Championship and placed fifth in the European Championship. He won the Karting World Championship in 2001. He beat Formula One champion Michael Schumacher at Kerpen, Schumacher's 'home' track.[3]

Formula Renault, F3 and F3000[edit]

Liuzzi driving for the Red Bull Junior Team at the Hungary round of the 2003 International Formula 3000 season

Liuzzi then moved to cars, finishing second in the 2001 German Formula Renault Championship. Racing in the German Formula Three Championship, however, he scored only ninth place. That same year he did win the San Marino International F3 race and had test drives for the Coloni Formula 3000 team and Williams, the Formula One constructor.[4] Red Bull hired Liuzzi for the 2003 F3000 season, in which he finished fourth. He moved to the Arden team for the following F3000 season, where he won seven of the ten races, securing the title with one race left.[5]

Formula One (2005–2012)[edit]

Winter 2004 Formula One speculation[edit]

Liuzzi's performance in Formula 3000 led to speculation that Ferrari might employ him,[6] either as a test driver at their Formula One team, or at Sauber, the Formula One team that Ferrari had a close association with as its longtime engine supplier. He did have a test drive with Sauber in September 2004,[7] but shortly before he tested they announced they had signed former World Champion Jacques Villeneuve to a two-year contract.[8] In November 2004 Liuzzi was given a test drive by Red Bull, who hired him for 2005 in January.[9]

Red Bull (2005)[edit]

Liuzzi driving the third Red Bull Racing car during practice for the 2005 British Grand Prix

Initially it seemed that he might be given the seat along with David Coulthard, but Red Bull chose Christian Klien,[10] leaving Liuzzi as the test driver. Despite good performances by Klien in the first three races, Red Bull abided by an agreement they made before the season that both he and Liuzzi would be able to race. Liuzzi would replace Klien for the San Marino, Spanish and Monaco Grands Prix. Liuzzi scored his maiden point on his debut after both BAR drivers were disqualified at San Marino. Following the Spanish Grand Prix and Monaco, he was given one more race at the European Grand Prix, before his seat was returned to Klien for the Canadian Grand Prix.

Toro Rosso (2006–2007)[edit]

Liuzzi driving the Toro Rosso STR1 during the 2006 Canadian Grand Prix

Following Red Bull's purchase of the Minardi team (renamed Scuderia Toro Rosso: Team Red Bull in Italian), Liuzzi was rewarded with a full-season seat in the "B-team".[11] At the United States Grand Prix, he scored the team's first point, with an eighth place finish after a race-long battle with Coulthard and Nico Rosberg. However, that was the only point the team would score in 2006.

Liuzzi driving for STR at the 2007 Brazilian Grand Prix

Liuzzi was confirmed with the team for the 2007 season at the launch of the STR2 on 13 February 2007.[12] Unfortunately, during the first half of his season his races were plagued by mistakes similar to his former team mate's. He seemed likely to score his first points of the season at Canada, but instead he crashed into the infamous "Wall of Champions" at the exit of the final chicane. He also faced constant speculation over keeping his seat, as the team openly courted both Sebastian Vettel and Champcar series champion Sebastian Bourdais. His team mate Scott Speed claimed Red Bull wanted to replace both himself and Liuzzi.[13] Once Bourdais' contract for 2008 was announced, Liuzzi's performances improved. After being denied a world championship point in Japan by to a post-race time penalty, he drove what many consider the best race of his Formula 1 career in China. Narrowly missing out on Q3 by qualifying 11th, he gained three places at the start, then overtook Mark Webber of the 'works' Red Bull team, as well as the BMW of Nick Heidfeld. Throughout the race he kept pace with 5th-placed Jenson Button's Honda, and held off a late charge from Heidfeld to finish 6th and collect three points.[14]

Force India (2008–2010)[edit]

Liuzzi driving for Force India at the 2009 Japanese Grand Prix

On 10 August 2007 Toro Rosso confirmed that Sébastien Bourdais would drive for them in 2008, leaving Liuzzi without a seat.[15] Liuzzi's manager, former Lotus boss Peter Collins, confirmed that Liuzzi wished to continue his involvement in F1.[16] He had been linked to a test drive role with Williams, but it eventually went to Nico Hülkenberg.[17] He then secured the role of test driver for the Force India F1 team on 10 January 2008.[18] Liuzzi stated he hoped to move up to a race seat in 2010 as he is contracted until 2011, but the contracts of his teammates Adrian Sutil and Giancarlo Fisichella would not expire until the end of 2009.[19]

On 3 September 2009, Force India released Fisichella so he could replace Luca Badoer at Ferrari, who had filled in for two races for injured driver Felipe Massa. On 7 September 2009, Force India announced that Liuzzi would drive for them in the remaining five races of the 2009 Formula One season. He made his race debut for Force India at the 2009 Italian Grand Prix and qualified an impressive seventh, given the fact he started the race with a heavier fuel load than his younger teammate Sutil. He was running solidly in the points, before retiring after 22 laps with a transmission problem.

Liuzzi driving for Force India at the 2010 Malaysian Grand Prix

On 27 November 2009 Force India announced that it kept Adrian Sutil and Liuzzi as drivers for 2010.

Liuzzi achieved his first-points scoring finish since the 2007 Chinese Grand Prix in the season-opening 2010 Bahrain Grand Prix. He finished ninth in the race, picking up two points due to the introduction of a new points system in Formula One in 2010. At the following round in Australia, he finished seventh in changeable weather conditions collecting a further six points. In Monaco Liuzzi finished ninth, scoring another two points for Force India. At the Canadian Grand Prix, Liuzzi qualified in a career-best sixth, which improved to fifth after Mark Webber's gearbox change. In the race, Liuzzi finished ninth after tangling with Felipe Massa at the first corner. He scored another point at Spa-Francorchamps, after Jaime Alguersuari was penalised post-race for gaining an advantage from cutting the Bus Stop chicane in the closing laps. He matched his career best finish of sixth at the Korean Grand Prix, and eventually finished 15th in the championship with 21 points, a career best.

Although he had a valid contract with Force India for 2011, Liuzzi was replaced by Paul di Resta.[20]

HRT (2011–2012)[edit]

Liuzzi driving for Hispania at the Malaysian Grand Prix.

Liuzzi was considered as a possible replacement for Robert Kubica at Lotus Renault GP for the 2011 season, after Kubica sustained life-threatening injuries in a rally crash in Italy on 8 February.[21] However, despite rumours suggesting that Kubica wanted Liuzzi to be his replacement,[22] the team opted to employ Nick Heidfeld to fill the role instead.

Subsequently, Liuzzi was announced that he would be testing for Hispania Racing at Circuit de Catalunya, as the Spanish team evaluated him for their second race seat alongside Narain Karthikeyan.[23] Liuzzi was confirmed in this role on 9 March 2011.[24] He did not qualify for the Australian Grand Prix and retired in Malaysia after the team withdrew him for safety reasons.[25] He recorded his first finishes with the team with a pair of 22nd place finishes in China and Turkey but retired in Spain with a gearbox issue. He took a 16th place finish in Monaco, and a 13th place in Canada, Hispania's best finish to date. After a 23rd place finish at Valencia and an 18th at the British Grand Prix, he failed to finish in Germany with electrical problems. Liuzzi finished as the final classified finisher in Hungary (20th), and Belgium (19th), before a first-lap retirement in Italy after contact with Heikki Kovalainen. As a result of the contact, Liuzzi slid across the grass and directly into Vitaly Petrov and Nico Rosberg. He finished as the final classified finisher in Singapore (20th), Japan (23rd) and Korea (21st).

For the Indian Grand Prix, he was replaced by Narain Karthikeyan, who took a race seat in front of his home fans alongside Daniel Ricciardo. Liuzzi returned to his race seat in Abu Dhabi however, and again finished as the final classified finisher, in twentieth place. In the final race at Brazil, he qualified 21st ahead of his teammate Ricciardo and both of the Virgin cars and was running ahead of Ricciardo in the race when he was forced to retire from the race due to an alternator failure on lap 61.

Liuzzi stated in January 2012 that, while he had a contract to continue with the team in 2012, his position within the team was uncertain.[26] In February 2012 it was announced that Narain Karthikeyan had been handed the final race seat; leaving Liuzzi without a drive.

Superstars Series (2012–2013)[edit]

Without a drive in Formula One, Liuzzi looked for other racing options. He eventually joined the International Superstars Series for the 2012 season, driving for CAAL Racing in a Mercedes C63 AMG.[27] He took his first podium finish at the first race during the first round in Monza, and he took his first win of the season during the second race of that round.[28]

Super GT and Super Formula (2014)[edit]

In 2014, Liuzzi moved to Japan and is competing in Super GT (GT500 class) and Super Formula. In his first season of Super GT, he is driving for Autobacs Racing Team Aguri and co-driving with Kosuke Matsuura.

Racing record[edit]

Career summary[edit]

Season Series Team Races Wins Poles F/Laps Podiums Points Position
2001 Formula Renault 2000 Eurocup GM Motorsport 1 0 0 0 0 0 NC
Formula Renault 2000 Germany 8 1 1 3 4 139 2nd
2002 German Formula Three Opel Team BSR 18 0 2 0 3 25 9th
French Formula Three 2 0 0 0 0 N/A NC†
Italian Formula Three 1 1 1  ? 1 9 8th
Masters of Formula Three 1 0 0 0 0 N/A 8th
European Formula Three Cup 1 0 0 0 0 N/A NC
Macau Grand Prix Team Kolles Racing 1 0 0 0 0 N/A NC
2003 International Formula 3000 Red Bull Junior Team F3000 10 0 1 0 2 39 4th
World Series by Nissan RC Motorsport 2 0 0 0 0 2 25th
2004 International Formula 3000 Arden International 10 7 9 3 9 86 1st
2005 Formula One Red Bull Racing 4 0 0 0 0 1 24th
2006 Formula One Scuderia Toro Rosso 18 0 0 0 0 1 19th
2007 Formula One Scuderia Toro Rosso 17 0 0 0 0 3 18th
2008 Formula One Force India F1 Team Test driver
2008–09 Speedcar Series UP Team 9 3 1 4 5 45 3rd
A1 Grand Prix A1 Team Italy 4 0 1 0 0 7 16th
2009 Formula One Force India F1 Team 5 0 0 0 0 0 22nd
2010 Formula One Force India F1 Team 19 0 0 0 0 21 15th
2011 Formula One Hispania Racing F1 Team 18 0 0 0 0 0 23rd
2012 International Superstars Series CAAL Racing 16 2 1 0 9 181 2nd
Campionato Italiano Superstars 10 1 0 0 3 92 3rd
Formula One Hispania Racing F1 Team Test driver
FIA World Endurance Championship Lotus 4 0 0 0 0 3 59th
2013 International Superstars Series Mercedes-AMG Romeo Ferraris 16 3 2 3 7 189 3rd
Campionato Italiano Superstars 10 2 1 2 6 158 2nd
FIA World Endurance Championship Lotus 6 0 0 0 0 8 25th
2014 Super GT Autobacs Racing Team Aguri 1 0 0 0 0 3 8th*
Super Formula HP Real Racing 1 0 0 0 0 1 8th*

* Season in progress.

As Liuzzi was a guest driver, he was ineligible to score points.

Complete International Formula 3000 results[edit]

(key) (Races in bold indicate pole position) (Races in italics indicate fastest lap)

Year Entrant 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 DC Points
2003 Red Bull Junior Team F3000 IMO
4
CAT
Ret
A1R
4
MON
Ret
NÜR
2
MAG
4
SIL
3
HOC
4
HUN
9
MNZ
4
4th 39
2004 Arden International IMO
1
CAT
1
MON
1
NÜR
11
MAG
1
SIL
1
HOC
1
HUN
2
SPA
2
MNZ
1
1st 86

Complete Formula One results[edit]

(key) (Races in bold indicate pole position) (Races in italics indicates fastest lap)

Year Entrant Chassis Engine 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 WDC Points
2005 Red Bull Racing Red Bull RB1 Cosworth TJ2005 3.0 V10 AUS
TD
MAL
TD
BHR
TD
SMR
8
ESP
Ret
MON
Ret
EUR
9
CAN USA FRA
TD
GBR
TD
GER
TD
HUN
TD
TUR
TD
ITA
TD
BEL
TD
BRA
TD
JPN
TD
CHN
TD
24th 1
2006 Scuderia Toro Rosso Toro Rosso STR1 Cosworth TJ2006 3.0
V10 14 Series
BHR
11
MAL
11
AUS
Ret
SMR
14
EUR
Ret
ESP
15
MON
10
GBR
13
CAN
13
USA
8
FRA
13
GER
10
HUN
Ret
TUR
Ret
ITA
14
CHN
10
JPN
14
BRA
13
19th 1
2007 Scuderia Toro Rosso Toro Rosso STR2 Ferrari 056 2.4 V8 AUS
14
MAL
17
BHR
Ret
ESP
Ret
MON
Ret
CAN
Ret
USA
17
FRA
Ret
GBR
16
EUR
Ret
HUN
Ret
TUR
15
ITA
17
BEL
12
JPN
9
CHN
6
BRA
13
18th 3
2009 Force India F1 Team Force India VJM02 Mercedes FO 108W 2.4L V8 AUS MAL CHN BHR ESP MON TUR GBR GER HUN EUR BEL ITA
Ret
SIN
14
JPN
14
BRA
11
ABU
15
22nd 0
2010 Force India F1 Team Force India VJM03 Mercedes FO 108X 2.4 V8 BHR
9
AUS
7
MAL
Ret
CHN
Ret
ESP
15
MON
9
TUR
13
CAN
9
EUR
16
GBR
11
GER
16
HUN
13
BEL
10
ITA
12
SIN
Ret
JPN
Ret
KOR
6
BRA
Ret
ABU
Ret
15th 21
2011 Hispania Racing F1 Team Hispania F111 Cosworth CA2011 V8 AUS
DNQ
MAL
Ret
CHN
22
TUR
22
ESP
Ret
MON
16
CAN
13
EUR
23
GBR
18
GER
Ret
HUN
20
BEL
19
ITA
Ret
SIN
20
JPN
23
KOR
21
IND ABU
20
BRA
Ret
23rd 0

Driver did not finish the Grand Prix, but were classified as they completed over 90% of the race distance.

Complete A1 Grand Prix results[edit]

(key) (Races in bold indicate pole position) (Races in italics indicate fastest lap)

Year Entrant 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 DC Points
2008–09 Italy NED
SPR
NED
FEA
CHN
SPR
CHN
FEA
MYS
SPR
MYS
FEA
NZL
SPR
NZL
FEA
RSA
SPR
RSA
FEA
POR
SPR

4
POR
FEA

Ret
GBR
SPR

10
GBR
SPR

9
16th 17

Complete Speedcar Series results[edit]

(key)

Year Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 Pos Points
2008–09 UP DUB
1

1
DUB
2

C
BHR
1

Ret
BHR
2

8
LOS
1

2
LOS
2

1
DUB
1

12
DUB
2

Ret
BHR
1

3
BHR
2

1
3rd 45

Complete V8 Supercar results[edit]

Year Team Car 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 Final Pos Points
2011 Tony D'Alberto Racing Ford FG Falcon YMC
R1
YMC
R2
ADE
R3
ADE
R4
HAM
R5
HAM
R6
PER
R7
PER
R8
PER
R9
WIN
R10
WIN
R11
HDV
R12
HDV
R13
TOW
R14
TOW
R15
QLD
R16
QLD
R17
QLD
R18
PHI
Q
PHI
R19
BAT
R20
SUR
R21

Ret
SUR
R22

19
SYM
R23
SYM
R24
SAN
R25
SAN
R26
SYD
R27
SYD
R28
78th 48
2012 Tony D'Alberto Racing Ford FG Falcon ADE
R1
ADE
R2
SYM
R3
SYM
R4
HAM
R5
HAM
R6
PER
R7
PER
R8
PER
R9
PHI
R10
PHI
R11
HDV
R12
HDV
R13
TOW
R14
TOW
R15
QLD
R16
QLD
R17
SMP
R18
SMP
R19
SAN
Q
SAN
R20
BAT
R21
SUR
R22

Ret
SUR
R23

DNS
YMC
R24
YMC
R25
YMC
R26
WIN
R27
WIN
R28
SYD
R29
SYD
R30
NC 0 +

+ Not Eligible for points

Complete International Superstars Series results[edit]

(key) (Races in bold indicate pole position) (Races in italics indicate fastest lap)

Year Team Car 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 DC Points
2012 CAAL Racing Mercedes C63 AMG MNZ
R1

3
MNZ
R2

1
IMO
R1

6
IMO
R2

Ret
DON
R1

5
DON
R2

3
MUG
R1

5
MUG
R2

5
HUN
R1

1
HUN
R2

2
SPA
R1

3
SPA
R2

2
VAL
R1

4
VAL
R2

7
PER
R1

3
PER
R2

9
2nd 181
2013 Mercedes-AMG Romeo Ferraris Mercedes C63 AMG MNZ
R1

1
MNZ
R2

2
BRN
R1

4
BRN
R2

Ret
SVK
R1

1
SVK
R2

Ret
ZOL
R1

5
ZOL
R2

7
ALG
R1

2
ALG
R2

2
DON
R1

DSQ
DON
R2

DSQ
IMO
R1

1
IMO
R2

2
VAL
R1

5
VAL
R2

4
3rd 181

*Season in progress

Complete FIA World Endurance Championship results[edit]

Year Entrant Class Chassis Engine 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 Rank Points
2012 Lotus LMP2 Lola B12/80 Lotus 3.6 L V8 SEB SPA LMS SIL
Ret
SÃO
13
BHR
9
FUJ
12
SHA 59th 3
2013 Lotus LMP2 Lotus T128 Praga Judd 3.6 L V8 SIL
Ret
SPA
6
LMS SÃO COA
DNS
FUJ
10
SHA
Ret
BHR
Ret
25th 8

Complete Super GT results[edit]

(key) (Races in bold indicate pole position) (Races in italics indicate fastest lap)

Year Team Car Class 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 DC Points
2014 Autobacs Racing Team Aguri Honda NSX-GT GT500 OKA
8
FUJ
Ret
AUT
Ret
SUG
15
FUJ
10
SUZ
BUR
MOT
19th* 4*

*Season in progress

Complete Super Formula results[edit]

(key) (Races in bold indicate pole position) (Races in italics indicate fastest lap)

Year Entrant 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 DC Points
2014 HP Real Racing SUZ
8
FUJ1
8
FUJ2
10
FUJ
Ret
MOT
AUT
SUG
SUZ1
SUZ2
11th* 1.5*

* Season in progress.

Personal[edit]

In addition to his native Italian, Liuzzi speaks English and French. He was previously known for his piercings in his left upper ear, left eyebrow and left lower ear. He is married to Francesca Caldarelli.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Liuzzi's year of birth is a matter of dispute. Some sources such as the FORIX Formula 1 database and www.formula1news.it [1] nominate it as 1980, whereas other sources such as Liuzzi's official website [2] and www.f1db.com [3] identify it as 1981.
  2. ^ "About Vitantonio". liuzzi.com. Vitantonio Liuzzi. Retrieved 2010-07-21. 
  3. ^ Schumi returns to kart roots. BBC News, 28 October 2001
  4. ^ Italians get Williams chance". BBC News, 6 November 2002
  5. ^ Liuzzi claims F3000 title". BBC News, 28 August 2004
  6. ^ Ferrari 'seek Liuzzi deal'". BBC News, 28 July 2004
  7. ^ Liuzzi given Sauber chance. BBC News, 2 September 2004
  8. ^ http://xserve2.com/ns/ns13501.html – GrandPrix.com. "Sauber announces Villeneuve deal" 15 September 2004.
  9. ^ Red Bull take on Liuzzi and Klien. BBC News, 5 January 2005
  10. ^ Red Bull name Klien second driver. BBC News, 13 January 2005
  11. ^ Toro Rosso confirm Liuzzi and Speed". NewsOnF1, 6 December 2005
  12. ^ "Toro Rosso confirms Liuzzi but Speed has to wait". grandprix.com. 2007-02-13. Retrieved 2007-02-14. 
  13. ^ "Speed says Toro Rosso want rid of him and Liuzzi". uk.reuters.com. 2007-07-23. Retrieved 2007-07-23. 
  14. ^ "Chinese GP – Sunday – Race Report A rookie mistake". Grandprix.com. Retrieved December 2007. 
  15. ^ "Bourdais signs for Toro Rosso". BBC Sport. 2007-08-10. Retrieved 2007-08-10. 
  16. ^ "Liuzzi aiming to stay in F1 in 2008". autosport.com. 2007-08-13. Retrieved 2007-08-14. 
  17. ^ "So what happens to Tonio Liuzzi?". grandprix.com. 2007-08-14. Retrieved 2007-08-14. 
  18. ^ "Mallya confirms Fisichella at Force India". autosport.com. 2007-01-10. Retrieved 2007-01-10. 
  19. ^ English, Steven; Lostia, Michele (2009-04-22). "Liuzzi eyes race return in 2010". autosport.com. Retrieved 2009-04-22. 
  20. ^ Wilkinson, Andy (26 January 2011). "Paul Di Resta gets Force India race seat for 2011". Motors TV (LMC). Retrieved 26 January 2011. 
  21. ^ Noble, Jonathan (8 February 2011). "Heidfeld, Liuzzi also in Renault frame". Autosport (Haymarket Publications). Retrieved 9 March 2011. 
  22. ^ "'Kubica prefers Liuzzi as his replacement'". Planet F1 (TEAMtalk media). 15 February 2011. Retrieved 9 March 2011. 
  23. ^ Elizalde, Pablo; Lostia, Michele (18 February 2011). "Liuzzi set to test for Hispania". Autosport (Haymarket Publications). Retrieved 9 March 2011. 
  24. ^ "Liuzzi handed drive with Hispania Racing". CNN International (CNN; Turner Broadcasting System). 9 March 2011. Retrieved 9 March 2011. 
  25. ^ Elizalde, Pablo (11 April 2011). "HRT stopped cars for safety reasons". Autosport (Haymarket Publications). Retrieved 27 May 2011. 
  26. ^ "Liuzzi 'still an HRT driver', but a realistic one". Crash.net (Crash Media Group). 16 January 2012. Retrieved 16 January 2012. 
  27. ^ "54 Vitantonio Liuzzi". FG Events & Sport S.p.A. © 2012 – All rights reserved. Retrieved 1 April 2012. 
  28. ^ "Liuzzi wins first Superstars race – Pigoli heads championship". TouringCar Times. Retrieved 2 April 2012. 

External links[edit]

Sporting positions
Preceded by
Björn Wirdheim
International Formula 3000 Champion
2004
Succeeded by
Nico Rosberg
(GP2)
Preceded by
Jules Bianchi
Desafio Internacional das Estrelas
Winner

2014
Succeeded by
Incumbent