Teo Fabi

A downhill ski racer between 1970 and 1974 Teodorico Fabi studied mechanical engineering at Institute of Technology in Milan and raced motorcycles in his spare time. He started car racing when he was 21 thanks to his younger brother Corrado and Teo rose rapidly through Formula Ford 1600, winning the 1977 Italian Championship, to race a private March in the European Formula 3 series in 1978. He scored three wins and was fourth in European Championship. As a result of his success he was recruited to the March Formula 2 factory team in 1979 and he finished 10th in the European F2 series. The following year he finished third in the series and he was expected to go into F1 with RAM March in 1981. The drive eventually went to Derek Daly and so Fabi was forced to go to America where he raced in CanAm for Paul Newman. He won four races but just missed the title. He was very fortunate to emerge unhurt from a crash which put his car into the trees at Elkhart Lake. In 1982 he was offered a Toleman Formula 1 drive alongside Derek Warwick. He also raced for the Lancia factory team in sportscars, winning the Nurburgring 1000 with Riccardo Patrese and Michele Alboreto.His results in F1 were not spectacular and in 1983 he was offered the chance to race for the Skoal Bandit Forsythe Racing team, using the new March 83C. He won four races and was named Rookie of the Year, just failing to win the CART title and playing an important role in establishing March in the United States of America. He had re-signed for Forsythe when he received an offer from Bernie Ecclestone to drive for the Brabham-BMW F1 team. In the end he organized a deal to run in both CART and F1 with his brother Corrado standing in for him at Brabham. In the midseason, however, he decided to concentrate on F1 and left his CART drive to Kevin Cogan. Teo finished third at Detroit in his Brabham.That autumn Teo's father died and for six months he retired from racing to run the family's talcum powder mine. He was then approached by the new Benetton team and asked to drive for them and he stayed with Benetton until the end of 1987, scoring three pole positions but only one third place.In 1988 he went back to Indycar racing to be the driver of the Quaker State March-Porsche. The team was not a great success but in 1989 he won at Mid-Ohio. Fabi stayed with Porsche in 1990 until the company stopped its CART program and then he joined Tom Walkinshaw Racing's Jaguar sportscar team.In 1991 he took the Jaguar XJR-14 to victory in the World Sportscar Championship. He was signed by Toyota Team TOM'S in 1992 but failed to win any races and when the sportscar series was canceled at the end of the year Teo went back to CART, driving for the Hall/VDS team. He stayed with Hall in 1994 but then decided to retire from racing having reached the age of 40. Teo's son Stefano is now racing.