On 25th April 1958, the first Formula Junior race took place in Monza. This race was won by Roberto Lippi in a Stanguellini FJ.

The founding of Formula Junior, a racing class for newcomers, was the idea of the Italian Earl Johnny Lurani to lure Italian drivers back into Grand Prix cars. Within two years there were races every weekend on five continents, and from 1961 it was possible to enter Formula One directly through them. Jim Clark, John Surtees, Peter Arundell, Mike Spence, Denis Hulme, Jochen Rindt, Mike Hailwood and Giancarlo Baghetti are just a few of the many who moved up to Formula One in this way.

Formula Junior was the first historic racing class to be brought back to life in 1975 and the Lurani Trophy was the first FIA championship to be allowed to be run by its own group in 1996. The golden jubilee celebrations followed in 2008 with eight races in Europe, New Zealand, Australia, the east and west coasts of the USA and South Africa, with a total of 270 drivers taking part.