AF Corse will begin the 2021 Fanatec GT World Challenge America Powered by AWS season this weekend by fielding the No. 61 Ferrari 488 GT3 for drivers Jean-Claude Saada and Conrad Grunewald at Sonoma Raceway.
MEET THE DRIVERS
Saada makes his move to the series after competing in the Ferrari Challenge since 2014, driving for Boardwalk Ferrari. He was the Coppa Shell champion in 2015 and moved to the Trofeo Pirelli Am division, where he currently sits in second position.
For his Ferrari Challenge career, Saada had seven victories, 26 podium finishes, eight poles and nine fastest laps in 85 starts. A durable competitor, he finished all but five of his races. A hard charger on and off the track, Saada is the founder, chairman and CEO of Dallas-based Cambridge Holdings, which develops, owns and manages award-winning health-enhancing medical facilities.
Grunewald placed second in the 2017 Pirelli World Challenge GT Cup Sprint X Am/Am. He has 14 career races in the series, with one victory, two pole positions and two podium finishes. He also raced a Ferrari 458 Italia in the 2014 Petit Le Mans for AIM Autosport. Since taking his first driving school in 2000, Grunewald has had a diverse career that included 10 years competing in Formula Drift. In addition to drifting, he’s been a respected driver/coach for Ferrari of San Francisco in the Ferrari Challenge.
FERRARI WON IN 2020
Ferrari took the opening round at Sonoma in 2020, with Martin Fuentes and Rodrigo Baptisa taking the Saturday race for Squadra Corse. The team seemed headed to a repeat victory on Sunday, before Fuentes had a brief off-course excursion with five minutes remaining that resulted in race-ending suspension damage.
TR3 Racing also raced a Ferrari at Sonoma last year. Ziad Ghandour and Jeff Segal finished fifth in Pro-Am on Saturday and improved to fourth on Saturday.
The Sonoma Raceway event opens with practice at 10:30 a.m. and 3 p.m. on Friday (all times PT). Qualifying will be held Saturday morning with 15-minute sessions for the Am (9:40 a.m.) and Pro (10 a.m.) drivers, followed by the opening 90-minute race at 2:45 p.m. Race 2 will be held at 1:15 p.m. on Sunday.