One month after winning two golds and a silver medal in the Rio Paralympics, Alex Zanardi claimed victory in his return to GT racing in Sunday’s Italian GT Championship season finale in Mugello.
The 49-year-old Italian took a specially adapted ROAL Motorsport BMW M6 GT3 to top honors in Race 2 of the weekend, after finishing sixth on Saturday.
It marked Zanardi’s first time behind the wheel of a BMW M6 GT3, and his first time back racing in more than a year, since focusing his efforts on handcycling in the Paralympics.
“There are no words to describe what I feel,” Zanardi said. “Today I saw the sun setting and it never looked that beautiful. What a year, not only what a day.
“Once more I enjoyed beautiful moments in Rio de Janeiro, and now just jumping into this beautiful car was amazing. But to win the race is something else.
“It is unbelievable. I want to thank all the guys in Munich, who did an amazing effort in getting this beautiful BMW M6 GT3 ready for me with everything I needed.”
The BMW factory driver has yet to detail any potential racing plans for next year. He last took part in a full season of the Blancpain GT Series Sprint Cup in 2015, also with ROAL.