Fired up Guimaraes leads the charge for Brazil in the Algarve Fresh from setting the record as the A1GP World Cup of Motorsport's youngest ever podium finisher, Felipe Guimaraes, who turned 18 just two weeks ago, will be heading to the brand new...
Fired up Guimaraes leads the charge for Brazil in the Algarve
Fresh from setting the record as the A1GP World Cup of Motorsport's youngest ever podium finisher, Felipe Guimaraes, who turned 18 just two weeks ago, will be heading to the brand new circuit at the Algarve to try to capitalise on the A1 Team Brazil's strong form in the championships sixth round of the season this weekend. Brazil will welcome back Bia Figueiredo to the team for the Algarve event to fulfil rookie duties and support Guimaraes.
Felipe, who finished second in the A1GP Gauteng race, will face the challenge of the new 4.96km Portimao Circuit in Portugal's Algarve area, a renowned holiday destination. The clockwise circuit was completed in October and has already been used for Formula 1 testing, but A1GP's visit will mark the circuit's first ever international car race. There has only been one previous A1GP meeting held in Portugal, with the third event of season one taking place at the Estoril Circuit near Lisbon in 2005.
A1 Team Brazil is also delighted to welcome back 24-year-old Bia Figueiredo to the team as rookie and reserve driver. Bia undertook rookie driver duties in the event in Shanghai in March 2007 and since then has achieved well-publicised success in the USA. Currently competing in the Firestone Indy Lights Series, Bia became the first woman to win a race when she took the spoils at Nashville in July 2008. She went on to finish the championship in third position overall.
Felipe Guimaraes: "I have confidence right now as we achieved a fantastic team result in South Africa. In the last race, I saw that I could drive with guys at the front like Neel Jani and Adam Carroll, so I have gained a lot of inner belief from that. For the next race in Portugal, I hope I can race with the front-runners again. In a sense, racing in the Algarve will be the same as Kyalami. It'll be a new track for everyone and I'll look forward to it. I've heard the track is very good and it looks fast and tricky but I think I'm going to enjoy it. We're going to work very hard to win. I cannot predict what will happen, but I'll do my best."
Bia Figueiredo: "I was very happy and honoured with Emerson's invitation to drive the rookie sessions for A1 Team Brazil in Portugal. My first international event was with Brazil in Shanghai in 2007 and it was fantastic. It will be great to return with more experience and international knowledge. I am also very excited to drive the new car, and I hope to help the team start the weekend well."
Emerson Fittipaldi, Team Principal: "The new track in the Algarve is beautiful and should produce some fantastic racing. We will have a strong pair of drivers with Felipe racing and Bia driving in the rookie sessions. It will be great to have Bia driving for us again, she is very talented. After the podium in South Africa we are looking forward to achieving another strong result. Felipe and the team did a fantastic job there and we want to continue that. I'm sure the other Filipe [Portugal's Albuquerque] will be very strong so we could have a Brazil versus Portugal situation!"