Schumacher's 1997 Ferrari F310 B goes to auction
By David Szondy
October 23, 2013
RM Auctions, based in Blenheim, Ontario, is placing a prominent slab of Formula One racing history on the auction block with the sale of a Ferrari F310 B, chassis 179 that was once driven by Michael Schumacher and Eddie Irvine.
An improved version of the F310 that raced with the Scuderia Ferrari in the late 1990s, the F310 B first appeared at the 1997 Australian Grand Prix, then went on to claim Ferrari’s first victory at the Monaco Grand Prix that year with seven-time world champion Michael Schumacher at the wheel.
The vehicle ended the 1997 season with 102 points and was notable not only for multiple F1 wins, but also for how its Formula One engineering, along with other Ferrari F1 cars, helped improve Ferrari’s road cars in terms of aerodynamics, fuel management, tires, engine design, and driver safety.
The F310 B was developed by John Barnard and Ferrari Technical Director Ross Brawn, with Rory Byrne taking over as Chief Designer after Barnard’s departure. Like all Formula One vehicles, there is an emphasis on aerodynamics to keep the car stable and differs from the previous F130 in having a distinctly higher nose.
Based on lessons learned from the F310, the width and height of the cockpit were modified to resolve problems with the engine airbox sited over the driver’s cockpit. In addition, the F310 B has large front and rear wings to maximize downforce at high speeds and is powered by a 3.0-liter V-10 engine (04611 number 192) from the F310. However, the engine in the F310 B boasts refinements and puts out 739 bhp (551 kW).
Schumacher first took the driver's seat of the F310 B, chassis 179, at the Belgian Grand Prix at Spa, and the car was also driven by Eddie Irvine at the Italian Grand Prix at Monza. It’s the eighth of nine built and the first of two lighter examples with a higher fuel capacity than the first models.
Chassis 179 retired from Ferrari in 1999 and passed through a documented string of prominent collectors, appearing at the Ferrari Racing Days at the Hockenheimring in Germany in 2000 and the Monterey Historic Races at Laguna Seca in 2004, as well as Ferrari’s F1 Clienti events. It has Ferrari Classiche certification, certifying that it is as factory correct as it was in 1997.
The F310 B will go under the hammer on November 21.
Source: RM Auctions