Following two years of renovations to bring the Autodromo Enzo e Dino Ferrari back to its pristine racing form, this weekend will see single-seaters descend on the track once more as Formula Master heads to Imola.
Whilst Formula One last raced at the track in 2006, changes directed by renowned circuit architect Hermann Tilke see the Autodromo ready to host the penultimate 2008 rounds for Formula Master.
Although most drivers will have had some experience of the tracks featured on this year's Formula Master calendar, Imola brings a new challenge for the field of young racers. No data exists since the circuit was modified, limiting their pre-race weekend preparations.
"Previous experience of a track is always an advantage of course," explains Iris Project's Michael Ammermüller. "But unless you drove a Formula Master car at that particular track before, what you might know of the circuit already isn't that relevant. You have to learn how to drive the current car on that track."
"Most drivers learn a track within a few laps anyway," adds Drivers Classification leader Chris van der Drift. "The challenge at Imola will be to find the correct set-up for the car as quickly as possible. With no testing, we will only have our two free practice sessions before having to qualify, so getting the set-up wrong could happen easily."
With racing closer than ever, three drivers remain in the title fight for the elusive Honda Racing F1 team test prize. JD Motorsport's van der Drift leads the classification, 13-points ahead of Ammermüller, whilst Jenzer Motorsport's Fabio Leimer is currently in third place with a 30-points deficit.
A four-way battle is also underway in the rookies classification with Ammermüller leading from Leimer by 25 points. Trident Racing's Harald Schlegelmilch and JD Motorsport's Vladimir Arabadzhiev stand a chance too, 32.5 and 40 points behind leading rookie Ammermüller respectively.
The team-mates classification remains wide open with JD Motorsport pair Vladimir Arabadzhiev and van der Drift currently leading, whilst four teams could still secure this year's Formula Master title (JD Motorsport, Trident Racing, Iris Project and Cram Competition).
Eurosport's coverage for Formula Master's race weekend in Imola will begin Saturday 20 September with race one shown live at 12:00 (CET) on Eurosport International and Asia Pacific. Sunday's race two will be broadcast live on Eurosport 2 and Asia Pacific at 14:00 (CET). For more information, please visit www.formulamaster.net.