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Wednesday, February 21, 2024

Profitable Le Mans and Daytona with Ferrari “tough to dream” about

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Pier Guidi and James Calado adopted up their total triumph within the centenary version of Le Mans with a GTD Professional class win at Daytona final weekend, as they took the highest spot with Davide Rigon and Daniel Serra in a Ferrari 296 GT3 entered by Risi Competizione.

It was the Italian producer’s first success within the blue riband spherical of the IMSA SportsCar Championship since Pier Guidi led the Degree 5 Motorsports squad to a GTD victory in 2014, and its seventeenth class win within the historical past of the enduro.

Along with Risi, Pier Guidi had beforehand completed second within the GTLM division in 2019, and once more in 2022 in GTD Professional. 

It additionally marked the primary time Risi and Ferrari received Daytona as a group/producer mixture, having been competing actively within the GT lessons collectively since 2014.

Requested what it meant to attain victories within the greatest two sportscar races on the earth in lower than 12 months, Pier Guidi stated: “It is even tough to dream, and we did it. 

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“Really six months in the past, we achieved this wonderful historic victory in Le Mans, and now we’re again right here with Risi and Ferrari to finish one other 24, to realize one other wonderful success.

“It was a very long time that Ferrari is making an attempt to win this race, and to win too simply is kind of shocking. They by no means received collectively. They received a lot collectively, however by no means this race. 

“Lastly for Giuseppe [Risi, team founder] and Ferrari collectively, we achieved this victory, we should be all pleased with this.”

Photograph by: Michael L. Levitt / Motorsport Images

#62 Risi Competizione Ferrari 296 GT3: Daniel Serra, Davide Rigon, Alessandro Pier Guidi, James Calado

The Risi Ferrari led varied levels of the twice round the clock enduro, with Calado’s transfer over the #1 Paul Miller BMW M4 GT3 of Neil Verhagen within the twentieth hour strengthening its bid for victory.

A protracted brake pedal for the BMW and a poorly-replaced right-front rotor, which pressured Verhagen’s team-mate Sheldon van der Linde to make a second unscheduled pitstop, then put the Risi group out of attain of its nearest rival.

The #62 Ferrari ultimately received the race by a full lap over the #99 AO Racing Porsche 911 GT3 R, with the #1 BMW ending up third.

Calado, who has additionally scored two victories at Petit Le Mans with Risi, described the double triumph as an “wonderful achievement” for himself and Ferrari.

“It is two massive sportscar races, and to tick each of them off in a brief time period is clearly a tremendous achievement,” stated the British driver.

“It is actually right down to Ferrari and the group and Risi for this weekend, and naturally for Le Mans. The entire group along with the drivers is wonderful, and to be a part of that, I really feel very fortunate.

“This race was just about how we wished it to go. The automobile was nice to drive, the stability, and the efficiency was positively so much higher than final yr.

“To get that win for Risi and particularly for Giuseppe like Ale stated, I am proud for him as a result of he is wished that for a very long time.”

#62 Risi Competizione Ferrari 296 GT3: Daniel Serra, Davide Rigon, Alessandro Pier Guidi, James Calado

Photograph by: Michael L. Levitt / Motorsport Images

#62 Risi Competizione Ferrari 296 GT3: Daniel Serra, Davide Rigon, Alessandro Pier Guidi, James Calado

Ferrari has expressed no real interest in competing in IMSA’s GTP class within the close to future, regardless of LMH vehicles like its 499P being allowed to compete within the class as a part of a guidelines convergence with the World Endurance Championship.

Nonetheless, some have thought-about the potential for a semi-works effort fronted by Risi, given their lengthy and profitable collaboration on each side of the Atlantic.

Pier Guidi says it is going to be a “dream come true” if he will get an opportunity to combat for outright wins at Daytona in a Ferrari 499P.

He added: “I actually want to compete within the GTP class right here and let’s have a look at. After all it isn’t – the sport is just not in our arms. We can’t determine something. However I’d be actually completely happy.”

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