Seven races will be held on three continents, the stage for the challenge of the FIA World Endurance Championship 2023, which will see the Prancing Horse return to the top class of the World Championship half a century after its last appearance.
The two Ferrari 499Ps set to debut at the 1000 Miles of Sebring in March will be driven by Alessandro Pier Guidi, James Calado and Antonio Giovinazzi, making up the crew of car number 51, and Antonio Fuoco, Miguel Molina and Nicklas Nielsen, who will be on board the hypercar sporting the number 50. Here are the comments of the six official drivers chosen for the Ferrari AF Corse team’s season who, after Sebring, will race legs in Portimão, Spa-Francorchamps, Le Mans, Monza, Fuji and Bahrain.
Alessandro Pier Guidi: “I am very proud to have been chosen as one of the six drivers to race the Hypercar, a car whose importance – also historical – is very clear to us. Driving an official Ferrari makes you proud, but the 499P is a step further. There are high expectations, even more so because we are racing for Ferrari. We have a big season ahead, but I am preparing hard to be ready. Sebring is just around the corner, but we still have tests to be ready for the first race, although our actual level will become apparent with the European races”.
James Calado: “I am delighted to be involved in the Le Mans Hypercar project. Fighting for overall victory in races and the championship in Ferrari colours is a dream come true. I have been involved in the 499P’s development and know its potential in the run-up to this FIA WEC season. We will continue to fight as a team, doing the utmost for everyone involved. I want to thank Ferrari and especially Antonello for this opportunity”.
Antonio Giovinazzi: “The 499P’s debut will be a defining moment in the history of the Prancing Horse, 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”.
Antonio Fuoco: “It’s a big thrill for me to be part of this programme because Ferrari’s return to the top class of the World Endurance Championship after 50 years is historic. It’s a huge responsibility for all of us, but at the same time, we are all very motivated to do a great job. Personally, I am looking forward to this new programme because it’s special to me, having witnessed its birth and development. We are working hard during testing, and I look forward to racing at Sebring”.
Miguel Molina: “I am delighted to have this opportunity, and I want to thank Ferrari for believing in me. Racing in the FIA WEC’s top class is one of the most significant sporting achievements of my career. It’s a pleasure to represent Ferrari in an important year, 50 years since its last race in the top class of the world championship. Words can’t explain how I feel because this goal represents the pinnacle of my career and a dream I have long pursued”.
Nicklas Nielsen: “It’s difficult to explain what I feel right now. I contested my first race with Ferrari in 2017 and am now part of the Hypercar programme. It’s incredible to be one of the first six drivers to drive the 499P in its debut season in the World Endurance Championship. I am very proud and happy about the support and trust placed in me by Ferrari, Antonello, and Amato Ferrari. It’s been an incredible journey so far, and I hope it continues for a long time. I can’t wait to start working alongside my teammates. Driving the Hypercar represents a massive step forward for my career”.