Porsche’s Newest Hired Gun Is Gianmaria Bruni
The Ex-Ferrari Factory Pilot Will Race With Porsche Post-Le Mans in July
Today it was confirmed by Porsche that the long-told rumors were true. Gianmaria Bruni has been absent from Ferrari events, including the Finali Mondiali pre-season celebration as well as the Daytona 24 hour race, and the speculation had been rampant ever since. As it turns out, Porsche has hired "Gimmi" Bruni to race for them beginning this 2017 season. After tense negotiations to release his contract from the Scuderia, Bruni will be allowed to join the Porsche ranks immediately for testing and marketing purposes, but will not be allowed to compete for the Werks program until July, which is conveniently after the 24 hours of Le Mans, when Porsche needs his talents most desperately.
As it stands, Bruni will not be eligible to compete in the World Endurance Championship this year as a stipulation of early cancellation of his Ferrari contract and will be relegated to Porsche's GT team here in the US, likely as a third driver in endurance races. With this wrench in Porsche's 'werks', as it were, Bruni's planned WEC seat will likely be taken up by either Roman Dumas or Sven Mueller already on Porsche's roster.
Interestingly Ferrari held a shootout earlier this month to help them decide who would replace Bruni before it had officially been announced that Bruni had left the team. We're sure his feelings were not hurt, but it was an interesting idiosyncratically Italian way of running a team. The four-driver test was held at Vallelunga between Nyck de Vries, Alessandro Pier Guidi, Alex Riberas, and Miguel Molina. As it happens, de Vries was supposedly the most impressive driver of the quartet in the test, but confirmation bias being what it is and all, Ferrari has confirmed this morning that it will be Pier Guidi stepping into that seat regardless.
Gianmaria Bruni, who lied about his age so he could start racing at ten years old, is a one-time Formula One pilot and storied Ferrari GT driver who has competed at Le Mans with them eight times since 2008, winning his category three times, and nabbing two further podiums. Welcome to the team Gimmi!
MORE TO READ
Take a Walk Around Porsche’s Mid-Engine 911 RSR With Factory Driver Kevin Estre
The Daytona 24 hour race is just a week away—and here is Porsche’s new contender.
Porsche Promotes Bamber And Tandy To LMP1 Duties, Hires Lotterer
Earl Bamber, Nick Tandy, and André Lotterer in a 919 Hybrid at Le Mans. That’s just not fair.
Porsche Confirms Vanthoor And Werner To GT Driver Lineup
Porsche Adds Two Of The Best GT Drivers In The World To Their Lineup
Porsche Promotes Sven Müller To The Werks Squad, So Who Is He?
Where Did This 24 Year Old Phenom Come From, Other Than Germany?