- September 15, 1973
- Italian Rally Championship
Giandomenico Basso is an Italian rally driver who occasionally competes in World Rally Championship events but he achieved his greatest results in other rally competitions.
In 2006, he was a double champion, winning both the Intercontinental Rally Challenge and European Rally Championship. He repeats ERC title in 2009. On his home soil, he was the Italian rally champion in 2007 and then again in 2016.
Born in Montebelluna near Venice in 1973, Giandomenico competed in karting races as a kid. His first rally efforts followed in the late 1990s when he was driving a Fiat Cinquecento or Fiat Seicento. In October 1998, Basso made a debut in WRC event, participating at Rallye Sanremo – Rallye d'Italia in a Fiat Seicento Sporting. He retired early, during the second special stage.
The next WRC appearance was more successful. It was at 1999 Rallye Monte-Carlo when Basso was driving Fiat Cinquecento Sporting. His navigator was Flavio Guglielmini. Basso finished 23rd overall and the winner in the A5 classification. In 1999, Basso continued to drive in the Italian rally championship, switching to Fiat Punto Kit Car in 2000.
In 2001, Basso stepped in the Junior WRC competition, driving a Fiat Punto S1600 for Top Run team. In six appearances, he retired four times and reached podiums two times. He was second at Rallye Catalunya and third at Tour de Corse. He finished fifth in the points, the champion was Sebastien Loeb.
Basso spent one more season in the JWRC, finishing fourth in the 2002 classification. He was on a podium three times, in Spain, Italy and Great Britain. Dani Sola was the 2002 Junior WRC champion.
From 2003, the European Rally Championship was Basso's main competition. Driving a Fiat Punto S1600, he was the winner once (Rally del Cioco) to finish 11th in the final standings. In the same time, he was second in the Italian championship with three wins on his account.
In 2004, his only ERC victory was at Rally Mille Miglia. Mittia Dotta became his co-driver. They also participated at Spanish WRC event, finishing second in the A6 class with Fiat Punto S1600. In 2005, Basso has won two times (Rally Bulgaria and EKO Rally) to finish as a runner-up in the European Rally Championship, losing a title to Renato Travaglia.
For the 2006 rally season, Fiat and Abarth launched Fiat Abarth Grande Punto S2000. Basso was hired as a factory driver for Abarth and he ended that season crowned as a double champion. He finally reached a top spot in the European Rally Championship, winning four times – Fiat Rally (Turkey), Ypres Rally (Belgium), Rally Bulgaria and Rali Vinho de Madeira (Portugal).
Two of those four events counted for the inaugural Intercontinental Rally Challenge. Two wins were enough for Basso to take IRC title.
In 2007, Basso participated in just two IRC events, winning at Madeira and finishing second at Sanremo, focusing his interest to the Italian rally championship. In the national championship, he won three times in a Fiat Abarth Grande Punto S2000 to take his first domestic rally title.
In 2008, Basso returned full-time to the Intercontinental Rally Challenge, participating in nine IRC events. He won two times and reached two more podiums, finishing third in the final standings, behind Nicolas Vouilloz and Freddy Loix.
In 2009, Basso captured his second European Rally Championship title. He participated in the same time in the IRC and ERC, with some events counting for both championships. In the IRC standings, Basso was fifth with one victory, in the ERC classification he dominantly took the title with seven wins.
The season 2010 was his last with Abarth. He didn't win any of rallies he entered with Fiat Abarth Grande Punto S2000.
In 2011, Basso started a season with in his private Peugeot 207 S2000 at Rallye Monte-Carlo, finishing in the ninth place. For the rest of the Intercontinental Rally Challenge season, he joined Proton Motorsport to drive a Proton Satria Neo S2000. His best result was ninth place at the Canary Islands and he finished 27th in the final IRC classification.
Basso entered the 2012 Rallye Monte-Carlo in a Proton and it was his last event with Malaysian manufacturer. For the rest of the 2012 season, he was driving Ford Fiesta RRC. He was the winner at Rally Mille Miglia, Rally di San Marino and Rally Sanremo, finishing fifth in the IRC standings and second in the European Rally Cup South.
In 2013, Basso was driving a Peugeot 207 S2000, participating mostly in national rally events and finishing fifth in the points. His only international race was the Rali Vinho de Madeira, where he won. In 2014, Basso switched to LPG-powered Ford Fiesta R5, winning two times and finishing second in the Italian championship, tied in the points with Paolo Andreucci.
Basso was the championship runner-up again in 2015, one more time losing a title to Paolo Andreucci. And then, finally, in 2016, Basso became the Italian champion for the second time in a career. He was driving two versions of Ford Fiesta R5 for BRC Racing Team, winning two times and beating Andreucci in the final standings.
In 2017, Basso started a season with his return to WRC after five years of absence, participating at Rallye Monte-Carlo in a Ford Fiesta R5. He retired due to mechanical troubles. After that, BRC Racing Team switched to Hyundai i20 R5, entering the European Rally Trophy as the main competition. Basso scored three wins and took the title.
In 2018, Basso continued to drive Hyundai i20 R5 but also is using Škoda Fabia R5 and tried Ford Fiesta RS WRC in one Swiss rally event.