The Autodromo Vallelunga Piero Taruffi has the honour of hosting the inaugural PURE ETCR event on June 18-20 as a new era of touring car racing gets underway.
What better way to mark the 70th anniversary of the sporting venue located in the Campagnano di Roma region, approximately 30km north of the Italian capital city.
Vallelunga opened in 1951 as a sand oval for horse racing, but was converted for motorsport, paved and extended six years later under the supervision of Grand Prix and Mille Miglia winner Piero Taruffi – after who it is now named.
The first event on the newly-asphalted 1.7km track was a six-hour sportscar race (an event that’s still held annually) in 1957 and just six years later an extended 3km version hosted a Formula 1 race – the non-championship Rome Grand Prix, won by Bob Anderson.
Over the next 27 years the race was run for F2, F3 and F3000 with winners including Jacky Ickx, Ronnie Peterson, Alex Zanardi and future touring car legend Fabrizio Giovanardi.
Through the 1990s, the circuit’s blend of corners made it a favourite testing venue for tyre manufacturers across Europe, while it also hosted Italian Superturismo and the European Le Mans Series before a further significant upgrade in 2005 that extended the length to 4.1km.
Its fortunes taking a resultant upwards surge, Vallelunga has since hosted the Superbike World Championship, the Formula 3 European Championship and – in 2019 – the first FIA Motorsport Games.
In 2021 it has held most of the official ETCR test sessions and also has the honour of hosting the most powerful touring cars ever created in the opening event of PURE ETCR.
First race: 1957
Corners: 6 (4 right, 2 left)
Lap record: To be established