Antonio Giovinazzi lands WEC drive as Ferrari reveal Hypercar line-up
Ferrari have announced that alongside his F1 reserve duties, Antonio Giovinazzi will take part in the World Endurance Championship.
Giovinazzi will join Alessandro Pier Guidi and James Calado in the #51 car for their 499P Hypercar entry in the FIA World Endurance Championship.
The team’s other car, #50, will be driven by Antonio Fuoco, Miguel Molina and Nicklas Nielsen.
On social media, the Formula 1 team said it was going to be a “very intense 2023” as Giovinazzi will combine WEC races with his reserve duties as the F1 team.
Speaking following the announcement, Giovinazzi recognised it was a “huge challenge” to represent Ferrari and described it as a “big honour.”
“The 499P’s debut will be a defining moment in the history of the Prancing Horse,” the 29-year-old Italian said. “And it will be a big honour for me to be part of this extraordinary moment.
“We know we have a great responsibility to meet with much humility, but we are aware of our strength and ready for this huge challenge.”
The 2023 WEC season will see Ferrari return to the track that made them a worldwide name, Le Mans. The Scuderia have not won at Le Mans since 1965 and decided to return to the WEC following the FIA’s decision to move to hybrid power.
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There will be seven races in total during the 2023 season starting with the 1,000 Miles of Sebring in March.
Head of Ferrari GT Sporting Activities Antonello Coletta said that the drivers will be judged on development and consistency, not just speed.
“With the choice of crews, we have completed the last step of the programme ahead of our debut at Sebring,” Coletta said. “Since the 499P’s first shakedown in July, we have worked non-stop involving the drivers of the Ferrari family.
“The decision regarding our chosen drivers relates not only to the races we will contest, but also to the growth that will continue during the championship. We are very clear about what we can ask of them concerning development and consistency, not just speed.”
Speaking at the announcement of Ferrari’s return to the top tier of endurance racing, executive chairman of Ferrari John Elkann said they were seeking “outright victory.”
“The 499P sees us return to compete for outright victory in the WEC series,” he said.
“When we decided to commit to this project, we embarked on a path of innovation and development, faithful to our tradition that sees the track as the ideal terrain to push the boundaries of cutting-edge technological solutions, solutions that in time will be transferred to our road cars.
“We enter this challenge with humility, but conscious of a history that has taken us to over 20 World Endurance titles and nine overall victories at the 24 Hours of Le Mans.”