Vincenzo Sospiri will take part in his first competitive motor race in eighteen months when he contests this weekend's Sebring 12 Hours event. The Italian has been forced to sit on the sidelines since clinching his second FIA Sports Racing...
Vincenzo Sospiri will take part in his first competitive motor race in eighteen months when he contests this weekend's Sebring 12 Hours event.
The Italian has been forced to sit on the sidelines since clinching his second FIA Sports Racing World Cup title in 1999, as he recovered to full fitness following a complicated shoulder operation, the legacy of an injury earlier in his career.
"It feels so good to be back," said Sospiri, 34. "It has been very frustrating to have been out of a car for so long but I always said when I came back I would come back strong and that is what I hope to do, starting with Sebring."
Sospiri will be in a Kelly-Moss Motorsports-entered Porsche 911-GT3RS in the event, round two of the American Le Mans Series.
"Of course we won't be in a position to challenge for overall victory but the important thing is to drive well for the team and get the best result in my class as possible," Sospiri continued.
"I have a lot of experience in endurance racing but Sebring will be a new experience for me: I am very excited by the challenge. My injury is much better now and all my training has gone so well that I like to think at this 12 hours as proof of my fitness" Sospiri added.
Following a hugely successful karting career, Sospiri sprung to prominence in 1988, just his first car racing season, when he won the Formula Ford Festival at Brands Hatch. Success went through GM-Lotus to Formula 3000, where he won the FIA International Championship in 1995. An aborted Formula One program with Lola and a front row qualifying for the 1997 Indianapolis 500 followed, before his switch into sportscar racing, where he won back-to-back FIA Sports Racing World Cup crowns in 1998 and 1999. Partnering Martin Brundle an Emmanuel Collard in a works Toyota GT-One he started from Pole Position in the 1999 Le Mans 24 hour in a works Toyota GT-One race.