Ferrari logo


Ferrari 499P roars into Qatar

No less than three 499P Le Mans Hypercars will line up on the grid for the FIA WEC 2024 debut
Words: Giulio Masperi

The FIA World Endurance Championship season kicks off at the Lusail circuit, near Doha, with the 1,812 km Qatar race on Saturday, 2 March. The first round of the 2024 World Endurance Championship will feature the number 50 and 51 499Ps of the Ferrari – AF Corse team crewed by Fuoco-Molina-Nielsen and Pier Guidi-Calado-Giovinazzi, respectively. 

The ten-hour race starts at 11am local time. Adding to the excitement, the third 499P, the number 83 car of the AF Corse clients team, will join the line-up on the grid. Official Ferrari drivers Robert Shwartzman and Yifei Ye will share the steering wheel alongside AF Corse’s Robert Kubica.

The number 51 499P is being driven by Alessandro Pier Guidi, James Calado, and Antonio Giovinazzi, who took the winning honours at last year’s Centenary 24 Hours of Le Mans

The Prancing Horse official 499Ps will line up for the start of their second season in the top Hypercar class of the FIA WEC after the positive results achieved in 2023, which ended with a runner-up spot in the Manufacturers’ World Championship for Ferrari and third and fourth place in the Drivers’ championship for crews number 50 and 51. 

“This year, our ambition is to be competitive in every race and to win more races than in 2023,” said Antonello Coletta, Global Head of Ferrari Endurance and Corse Clienti. “We start a year that will be very challenging, wanting to repeat our victory at the 24 Hours of Le Mans and compete for victory in the World Championship.”

The familiar faces of the Maranello-based manufacturer’s six official drivers will again appear in the cockpits of the red-liveried Ferrari 499Ps. Antonio Fuoco, Miguel Molina, and Nicklas Nielsen, who celebrated pole positions at Sebring and Le Mans and four podium finishes last year, will crew the number 50 car. Meanwhile, the number 51 car will be driven by Alessandro Pier Guidi, James Calado, and Antonio Giovinazzi, who etched their names into motor racing history with their win in the Centenary 24 Hours of Le Mans.

Above, left to right: pre-race mental preparation; the official number 50 and 51 499Ps will wear a renewed livery which, like the 2023 cars, pays homage to the legendary Ferrari 312 PB; the pit crew in action; the number 51 car on track

The 2024 season introduces a new livery for the official 499Ps, unveiled on 18 February, blending tradition with innovation. Echoing the legacy of the Ferrari 312 PB, which competed in the World Sportscar Championship until 1973, the new design evolves the 2023 Hypercar’s design language. In terms of colour, racing red with a glossy trim, used to maximise the 499P’s visibility even when racing at night, combines with Giallo Modena, highlighting the car’s cockpit and some of its aerodynamic elements, including the tail fin. 

The 2024 season expands to eight rounds in total, one more than in 2023. Besides Qatar, Italy’s Imola track, named after Enzo and Dino Ferrari, debuts on the World Championship calendar. Interlagos (Sao Paulo) and the Circuit Of The Americas in Austin return to the FIA WEC spotlight. 

The drivers and crews of the number 50 and 51 499Ps of the Ferrari AF Corse team – ready for the 2024 season

“This year, we have an extra race on the calendar,” commented Alessandro Pier Guidi. “Besides Qatar, we have never competed with Hypercars on two tracks, Imola and San Paolo, so there will be plenty of unknowns, especially since we have no absolute benchmarks for our performance and that of our rivals.”

After its debut on 2 March, the WEC circus will move to Imola (Italy; 21 April), Spa-Francorchamps (Belgium; 11 May), Le Mans (France; 15-16 June), Sao Paulo (Brazil; 14 July), COTA (USA; 1 September), Fuji (Japan; 15 September), and Bahrain (2 November).