Günter Schmid, eccentric former owner of the ATS team, is back! Having sold the ATS car spares company, in 1987, he bought Rial, a manufacturer of wheel rims, and decided to follow the same advertising strategy: enter F1 as a constructor and get the company’s name on TV across the world.

It hadn’t exactly worked out for ATS, but the ARC1 was drawing a lot of positive interest. Gustav Brunner’s chassis was nicknamed the “Blue Ferrari”, taking its design cues from his F1/87 chassis for the Maranello team, and would be powered by the Ford Cosworth DFZ engine. On driving duties was serial small-team-enabler Andrea de Cesaris, his Marlboro sponsorship providing a vital fillip to the team’s finances.

88decesaris22. Andrea de Cesaris it

The Italian seems to still be enjoying his racing, but doesn’t seem able to stay at even the smallest team for more than a season despite his ample Marlboro money. He doesn’t crash all the time, but neither does he seem to have the speed and consistency needed. Still, as long as he gets to go racing and the teams get the money, no-one seems to mind.


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