Excited Morbidelli joins all-star WTCR grid
Gianni Morbidelli, who raced for Ferrari in Formula One and is a winner at touring car’s highest level, will complete Team Mulsanne’s bid for glory in the WTCR – FIA World Touring Car Cup presented by OSCARO after signing to partner Fabrizio Giovanardi for the all-new series.
He will drive an Alfa Romeo Giulietta TCR by Romeo Ferraris in the planned 30-race contest that visits nine countries in four continents from April to November.
Following Team Mulsanne’s capture of Giovanardi’s signature earlier this week, Morbidelli is one of four significant recruits with Hexatron engineer Marco Calovolo bringing his technical expertise to develop the car and Nicolò Castello joining to manage the squad’s marketing department.
“I am extremely happy and honoured to be back at the top level of world touring car racing, and to do it at the wheel of an Alfa Romeo Giulietta TCR by Romeo Ferraris, sporting the logo of such a prestigious brand,” said Morbidelli, 51. “It will be a championship of the highest level, with many great teams and drivers, and this makes the challenge even more exciting. I wish to thank Team Mulsanne for their trust and for giving me this great opportunity, as well as Niki International for their valuable support and for making all this possible.”
One of Italy’s top drivers, Morbidelli enjoyed significant success in single-seater racing both at home and beyond. He started 67 grands prix before forging a successful career in touring car racing, placing third in the European Touring Car Championship in 2000. He won the Superstars Series in Italy in 2009 and 2013 before moving to the TCR International Series in 2015 – claiming six victories – following a race-winning stint in the WTCC.
Michela Cerruti, the Operations Manager of Romeo Ferraris, said: “We are very pleased to have Gianni joining us alongside Fabrizio Giovanardi. Without any doubt, they form the most expert driver pair of the series, and this is exactly what we need to demonstrate our car’s potential. Team Mulsanne is back to racing after one year and to maximise its possibilities at such a competitive level, Romeo Ferraris has opted to ensure the services of two well-known professionals such as Marco Calovolo and Nicolò Castello, respectively in the technical and marketing areas.”
François Ribeiro, Head of Eurosport Events, the WTCR promoter, said: “Gianni Morbidelli not only brings important experience and expertise to Team Mulsanne, he also represents another top-level and high-profile driver for WTCR. He will form a strong partnership with Fabrizio Giovanardi.”