Jan.27 (Ferrari) There are just eight days to go until the wraps come off the car with which Scuderia Ferrari will contest the 2012 Formula 1 World Championship, but today already had a special significance for Jules Bianchi.
The French driver who is currently in the Canaries at a fitness camp to prepare for the coming season, alongside fellow drivers Fernando Alonso, Felipe Massa and Davide Rigon, was nominated as reserve driver for the Sahara Force India team for this season.
Jules will still be part of the Ferrari Driver Academy (FDA), along with Sergio Perez, Raffaele Marciello, Brandon Maisano and Lance Stroll and this latest appointment is a great opportunity to gain more Formula 1 experience and everyone at Scuderia Ferrari wishes him all the best. As for Davide Rigon, he has recently extended his relationship with the Scuderia: the driver from Venice will be on call for the team for all racing and promotional activities also for the 2012 and 2013 seasons.
“I am very happy to have extended my connection to the most important team in Formula 1,” commented Davide. “This is a great boost for my future after what was a difficult 2011: Ferrari always stood by me in the most difficult moments of my recovery after my accident last May and I hope to be able to repay them for the faith they showed in me.”
Across the Atlantic Ocean further out than the Canary Islands, other drivers in the Ferrari family are busy, taking part in the Daytona 24 Hours at the wheel of the 458 Grand-Am cars. Among them are Giancarlo Fisichella, Gimmi Bruni, Andrea Bertolini and Toni Vilander, while strengthening the Corse Clienti group this year is the Monegasque driver Olivier Beretta.
The only Ferrari driver actually in Maranello today is Marc Gene, who is working in the simulator in preparation for the now imminent start of the racing season. Almost all of these drivers will be back together again on 3 February at the Fiorano Track – just Jules will be missing, at Silverstone for the presentation of the new Force India.