Giancarlo Fisichella, winner of three Formula 1® Grands Prix and veteran of 229 Grand Prix starts, will be a high-profile addition to the Shannons Australian GT Championship support races at the Formula 1® 2018 Rolex Australian Grand Prix.
Fisichella, from Rome, Italy, will race a Maranello Motorsport Ferrari 488 GT3 with naming-rights support from global cybersecurity company, Kaspersky Lab.
“I have participated in many races in different countries around the world, but racing in Australia is always something special for me,” said Fisichella.
“I have great memories of Albert Park, above all the pole position and the victory in F1® in 2005. I am also really proud to be the brand ambassador of Kaspersky Lab in Australia, which is giving me the great opportunity to race the Ferrari 488 GT3 of Maranello Motorsport.”
Kaspersky Lab Australia and New Zealand General Manager Anastasia Rae adds: “Kaspersky Lab’s connection with motorsport goes well beyond the race track and we’re excited to bring back the previous champion, Giancarlo Fisichella as a Kaspersky Motorsport driver to Melbourne.”
Fisichella will share driving duties across four 25-minute races with FIA Bronze-rated driver Peter Edwards, winner of the Bathurst 12 Hour race in 2014.
The Ferrari 488 GT3 will be presented in the same white, green and red livery that adorned the Kaspersky Motorsport Ferrari which Fisichella raced in last year’s Blancpain GT Series.
Melbourne’s Albert Park Grand Prix Circuit holds special memories for Fisichella, whose Formula 1® debut for Minardi coincided with the inaugural World Championship race at Albert Park in 1996.
One of Fisichella’s 19 career podiums in Formula 1® included victory in the 2005 Australian Grand Prix, which the Italian won from pole position in his first race for Renault.
Australian Grand Prix Corporation CEO, Andrew Westacott, is looking forward to seeing Fisichella take to the track as he competes in the Shannons Australian GT Championship at this year’s Formula 1® 2018 Rolex Australian Grand Prix.
“With Giancarlo being a former F1® driver and previous Formula 1® Australian Grand Prix winner, we are excited to host a driver of his calibre. Having a driver like Giancarlo on the grid goes to show the quality of competition in our support category line-up,” said Westacott.
“The Formula 1® 2018 Rolex Australian Grand Prix will feature the biggest support category line-up in the event’s history this year, ensuring the greatest track spectacle at any Formula 1® event around the world.”
Fisichella’s appearance in Melbourne will open the 45-year-old’s ninth year of GT racing with Ferrari, which will include a return to the FIA World Endurance Championship with the Spirit of Race team.
The Shannons Australian GT Championship will feature on track during all four days of the Formula 1® 2018 Rolex Australian Grand Prix from 22-25 March.