Massimo Natili was one of nine drivers at the time of writing who shared the dubious record of retiring from their only Grand Prix without completing a lap – the shortest careers in Formula 1 history.
1961 British Grand Prix
A Formula Junior driver of some note in 1961, he drove Scuderia Centro Sud’s old Cooper T51-Maserati in selected non-championship races that year (including rolling on the opening lap of the International Trophy at Silverstone) before entering the British GP. He qualified on the penultimate row but his gearbox shattered on the opening, wet lap of Aintree at the Melling Crossing.
He had also raced in the Targa Florio that year – finishing 19th and last on his debut in the World Sportscar Championship. Natili continued to race in Formula Junior and its replacement Formula 3 for the rest of the decade. He was lucky at Monza in 1962 when dragged from his burning car by a spectator.
A couple of 1964 Formula 2 races with a Jolly Club Brabham BT9-Giannini/Fiat included finishing sixth in the Rome GP at Vallelunga. His best F3 result also came at the Roman circuit – Natili’s BWA-Ford winning the final round of the 1965 Italian Championship.
He shared a Bizzarrini A3C-Chevrolet with Sam Posey in his only appearance in the Le Mans 24 Hours a year later. They were disqualified for a pit violation and Natili retired from racing after a final F3 season in 1967. He later ran a BMW car dealership.