Page 17 - Dallara_ENG

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Gian Paolo Dallara started his business just
beside the rather bald local football field, a
stone’s throw from the chuirch and the race
track. Every now and then the bells would ring
out, cutting, across the wine of the engines,
inviting the faithful to quit the racing. It was a
tiny place with just a couple of assistants
helping out. But even by the late 1970s,
Dallara’s narrow little office was home to one
of the first computers with CAD-CAM. This was a
place in wich tubular technology was banned.
A place where they built cars, monocoques and
did consultancy work. A place of aerodynamic
profiles and engine testing. A place English
engineers flocked to each week to talk about the
revolutionary new composite materials he was
using for his chassis. It was a tiny hole-in-a-wall
on one level, but also the place from which the
yellow Dallara brand embarked on its
triumphant journey, little knowing that, whitin
a few years, it would turn the world of the big
British single-seater constructors on its head,
technically and commercially.
It was little more than garage but one in which
secret weapons for the sports-prototype and
rally tracks were readied in secret. Cars that
would be show “to friends, not journalists”
because although Dallara had created their
very souls, they were built for the
manufacturers competing in the world
championships. The first Dallara “works” was
just a few square metres in size but it gradually
expanded. Gian Paolo took on his first
employes, put in the first autoclave, the first
wind tunnel and so on. The company got bigger
and better al the time, but at the right pace,
giving us what is now not only one of the most
creative and esteemed facilites on the scene, but
also of the youngest companies in the world in
terms of the average age of its employees and
It all started here in Varano de’ Melegari.
(Extract from ”È una bella storia”)
(“I'ts beautiful story”)
up to the current day, and his
success as an international
businessman, none of this would
be possible without authentic
personal relationships, the
fundamental importance of the
“human factor”, designing and
building the first engine together
with others who share a common
vision for professional and
industrial growth and
development. It’s an emotional
read, full of anecdotes and stories
about characters that are told with
sensitivity and passion, without a
hint of vanity but with a precision
that brings them to life. The book
also contains chapters dedicated to
the categories that contributed to
the national and then
international success of the
factory, from Formula 3 to the
prototypes, from F.1 to IndyCar.
The book features contributions
from such famous figures as Eddie
Cheever and Mario Andretti, Cesare
Fiorio and Pino Allievi, and offers a
revealing insight into what goes on
inside Dallara, providing a “step by
step” overview of how a project is
born, the aerodynamic
development phase and the
transfer to the production stage.
Attention is also given to the
“centres of excellence” that are so
important to Dallara’s success, the
research and development
department, the wind tunnel and
the extraordinary new simulator.
The appendices, including the Roll
of Honour that lists all Dallara’s
victories, and the technical
specifications of all the cars
produced at Varano, will appeal to
enthusiasts and the curious alike.
The volume concludes with an
interview with Engineer
Pontremoli, the company CEO, and
Lorenzo Ramaciotti’s portrait of
Dallara, either side of a collage of
photographs of all the employees
at the factory, which complete a
composition made up of words and
images that mirror the Dallara
philosophy: passion and
innovation, a life lived as though it
were always work in progress,
where affection for the past and
one’s roots must never compromise
the desire to meet tomorrow’s
challenge. A challenge on Dallara’s
terms though: with humanity,
without delusions of grandeur but
with the pleasure of starting a new
project every day. A fine piece of
work. A book worth reading.
“I'ts beautiful story”,
by Guido Schittone.
Gian Paolo Dallara with CEO Andrea Pontremoli