Brembo is celebrating another historic milestone with the 2021 Russian Grand Prix:
eight hundred Formula 1 races with at least one single-seater equipped with one or more Brembo braking components.
This long series began with a small number of cast iron discs for Scuderia Ferrari in 1975. It was a big challenge for Brembo, which had been founded just a few years earlier - in 1961 - and at that time was still a small machine shop. Its partnership with Maranello has continued uninterruptedly down to today.
Obviously, over time , Brembo
brake discs (first cast iron and then carbon), have been joined by brake calipers, pads, disc housings, brake master cylinders and the development of complex braking systems including by wire technology, the electronically controlled braking system that has governed the rear braking of F1 cars since 2014. This technological escalation spans almost 50 years, in which Brembo has always played a leading role with its innovative and effective solutions.
Over these 800 Grands Prix, cars equipped with Brembo brakes have driven on
56 tracks worldwide, most of them in Europe. However, the number of Asian events has increased since the 1990s, having first appeared on the calendar in 1976, when Brembo was already firmly established.
No two Grands Prix are ever identical in course, weather conditions and competitors (constructors and drivers). Of these 800 GPs,
the longest was the 1975 Swedish Grand Prix, with 321.44 km: Niki Lauda won with the Ferrari 312T equipped with Brembo discs that helped him become world champion that year.
Last month's Belgian GP was the shortest, even though the three laps run were all behind the safety car. The 1991 Australian Grand Prix (52.92 km)
was the shortest GP actually raced. Ayrton Senna claimed victory in a McLaren fitted with Brembo brakes, which he had specifically requested after a long and successful experience of them at Lotus.
The Brazilian champion's loyalty was matched by
Michael Schumacher, the record holder in a whole series of Brembo braking system-related statistics. He
raced the most Grands Prix (307), won the most (91) and finished on the podium the most times (155). All seven of his world titles were won using Brembo brakes.
single-seaters equipped with Brembo brakes have triumphed in 455 Grands Prix, more than half the number of races contested (57% to be precise). One-hundred-and-eighty-six of these saw victories for Scuderia Ferrari cars with 21 different drivers, while the remaining 269 were won by other teams with 41 drivers mounting the top step of the podium.
In the course of 800 Grands Prix, there have been races decided by a hair's breadth, such as the
GP USA 2002 in which Ferrari did a one-two, with Rubens Barrichello 11 thousandths ahead of Michael Schumacher. The 14 thousandths by which Senna beat Nigel Mansell in the 1986 Spanish GP are also unforgettable. Both of these victories bore the Brembo logo.
Today, reliability has hit levels unimaginable even twenty years ago. This has always been one of the characteristics of Brembo brakes, as shown by the GP with the fewest finishers in the history of F1.
Victory in the 1996 Monaco Grand Prix, finished by just three cars, went to Olivier Panis in a Ligier, which happened to have Brembo brakes.
Over the decades,
Brembo has supplied braking systems to almost every team, from the most prestigious to the smallest. Initially, these were standardized parts, but over time the solutions have become increasingly customized to suit the design characteristics of the single-seaters they equip.
Indeed, today this co-design activity involves practically all components destined for the F1 market, from the brake calipers to the BBW, resulting in very geometrically diverse products.
Brembo has stood out for innovation from the outset, as in 1982 when it created the first radial mount brake caliper, or in 1988 when it introduced the first monobloc caliper to racing. At the time, making a caliper from a single block of aluminum seemed like a feat verging on science fiction. However, Brembo's engineers managed to create the program and the tooling for the internal machining operations.
The result helped wrote the history of motoring, initially only for competitions, but later also transferred to road cars to provide the same feeling and effectiveness to the masses. Moreover, technological transfer from the track to the road is one of Brembo's founding principles.
The 800 Grands Prix run so far have helped in this, and future Grands Prix will do likewise, as Brembo continues to be the world leader in technology and innovation for braking systems.