Maranello, 14 June 2017 – Ferrari.com brings you to discover the Ferrari crews entered in the Le Mans 24 Hours. Here we talk about the other 488 GTE-Pro car #82 by Risi Competizione driven by the Giancarlo Fisichella and Toni Vilander that is usually racing in the IMSA SCC series. Fisichella and Vilander will have Pierre Kaffer as third driver.
The team. Risi Competizione is a Houston-based professional Ferrari racing team founded and managed by Giuseppe Risi. The team is headquartered at and co-located with the Ferrari of Houston facility in Southwest Houston. Over the last 20 years, Risi Competizione has been one of the most consistent, winning organizations in world class professional road racing. It is the most successful Ferrari GT racing team in North America and has a history that includes 3 wins at the 24 Hours of Le Mans, 4 wins at the 12 Hours of Sebring and 3 wins at the Petit Le Mans.
Fisichella. Giancarlo Fisichella was born in Rome on 14 January 1973 and developed a passion for motors very early: he was only 8 years old when he started training with karts at the Guidonia circuit. Giancarlo joined the Formula 1 circuit at age 23, when Minardi hired him for the 1996 season. In the following years he raced for Jordan, Benetton, Sauber, Renault, Force India and Scuderia Ferrari. In 2010, he fulfilled the role of third driver for Scuderia Ferrari and competed in the Le Mans Series, at the wheel of an F430 GTC of the AF Corse team. Since 2011, he has been racing in GT competitions at the wheel of a Ferrari 458 Italia GT with the AF Corse team, first in the Intercontinental Le Mans Cup and then in the World Endurance Championship. In 2012 he won the 24 Hours of Le Mans with“Gimmi” Bruni and Toni Vilander and the following year he was runner up in the drivers’ Championship, but was a determining factor in Ferrari’s and AF Corse’s wins of the Constructors and Teams Championships respectively. In 2014, he won again in Le Mans with Bruni and Vilander, but he raced in the United States for the season participating in the Imsa SCC series. He’s still racing there with the Risi Competizione team with which he was second at the Le Mans 24 Hours and was able to win the IMSA season finally: the Petit Le Mans race at Road Atlanta.
Vilander. Toni Markus Vilander made his motorsport début at the age of five. In 2004, Vilander moved to Formula 3 and, in 2005, he competed in Formula 3000 and in the Italian GT Championship, where he immediately took the title along with his partner Alessandro Pier Guidi. Still with Guidi and Giambattista Giannoccaro, in 2006, Vilander dominated the GT1 class of the Italian GT Championship, while in 2007 and 2008, he won the GT2 class championship of the FIA GT series at the wheel of a Ferrari 430. In 2008, he also took part in the American Le Mans Series alongside Jaime Melo, at the wheel of the Risi Competizione team’s Ferrari 458 Italia GTC, while in 2012 he earned top honours in the Le Mans 24 Hours, alongside Giancarlo Fisichella and “Gimmi” Bruni. In 2013, he partnered with Kamui Kobayashi on the 458 Italia of the AF Corse team in the World Endurance Championship (WEC); however, he took the only win of the season in the last race in Bahrain with “Gimmi” Bruni, thus contributing to the Roman racer’s Drivers Championship, to Ferrari’s Constructors Championship, and to AF Corse’s Team Championship. In 2014, Toni teamed up regularly with Bruni and earned his first GT title in the WEC; he also duplicated the successes in the Teams and Constructors Championships. The most prestigious of the pair’s four seasonal wins was undoubtedly that of the 24 Hours of Le Mans, earned with Giancarlo Fisichella’s help. In 2015, again with Bruni, he won the Silverstone and Fuji races. From 2016 he’s racing in the American IMSA SCC series with Rici Competizione. Last year he was second in the Le Mans 24 Hours and won the Petit Le Mans race at Road Atlante in the month of October.
Kaffer. Pierre Kaffer was born in Bad Neuenahr on 7 November 1976. After karting he made his debut in single-seaters competing in Formula 3. He moved over to closed wheels in 2002, initially with Porsche and then for Audi with which he won the 12 Hours Sebring in 2004. After two seasons in DTM, he returned to GT racing in 2007 moving to the United States the following year. In 2009 he won the 24 Hours of Le Mans in the F430 of Risi Competizione with Jaime Melo and Gianmaria Bruni, while the following year he triumphed in the International GT Open with the AF Corse team. Pierre is one of the stars of the GT racing world, this season also competing in the United States. This will be Kaffer’s tenth 24th Hours of Mans.