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Ferrari Driver Shootout Set for Bruni Replacement
- Updated: February 5, 2017
Ferrari is set to test no fewer than four different drivers, in its search for a replacement for Gianmaria Bruni in its FIA World Endurance Championship lineup. (En Français)
Endurance-Info has learned that the Italian manufacturer will hold a shootout at Vallelunga this week, which will see Alessandro Pier Guidi, Alex Riberas, Nyck de Vries and Miguel Molina audition for the factory GTE-Pro seat.
The test could confirm the fourth and final full-season driver in the AF Corse lineup alongside the returning James Calado, Davide Rigon and Sam Bird.
While Pier Guidi is no stranger to Ferrari machinery, Porsche ace Riberas, a race-winner in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship last year, impressed in the 2016/17 Asian Le Mans Series season at the wheel of DH Racing’s Ferrari 488 GT3 car.
Both GP3 standout de Vries and former Audi DTM driver Molina, meanwhile, have no prior sports car racing experience, but have achieved success in the open-wheel and touring car ranks, respectively.
Despite currently holding a multi-year deal with Ferrari, it’s understood Bruni will not likely be at the wheel of a Prancing Horse this year due to a contract dispute.
Bruni was absent from the Ferrari World Final, while the longtime factory driver also missed last month’s Rolex 24 at Daytona for the first time since 2013.
Multiple sources have indicated the Italian star could join Porsche mid-season, possibly after the 24 Hours of Le Mans, either in the manufacturer’s WEC or WeatherTech Championship factory entries.
Both manufacturers have yet to officially comment on Bruni’s status, although Dr. Frank Steffen-Walliser, Head of Porsche Motorsport, told Sportscar365 that he expects to confirm the remainder of its WEC GTE-Pro lineup by next month’s Prologue at Monza.