SF

: Turkish delight for Italian team in Istanbul

Galatasaray SK's race team for the new Superleague Formula championship has taken the opportunity to become acquainted with their new fans in Istanbul this week after Thursday's official launch. Milan-based Scuderia Playteam were on hand tonight...

Galatasaray SK's race team for the new Superleague Formula championship has taken the opportunity to become acquainted with their new fans in Istanbul this week after Thursday's official launch.

Milan-based Scuderia Playteam were on hand tonight at Ali Sami Yen Stadium in Istanbul as Galatasaray defeated Kayserispor 2-0.

The club's Superleague Formula car was paraded in front of the fans prior to the commencement of the match. Two of the Galatasaray's potential drivers, Italian Alessandro Pier Guidi and local Turkish star Jason Tahinci also took the opportunity to meet some of the local fans at the famous Istanbul spice market.

"I'm proud to be part of the Superleague Formula organisation and obviously I'm a fan of Galatasaray so it kind of works out for me really well," said Tahinci.

"When these kind of names like the football clubs are in the business it's difficult to reject, so when I looked at the portfolio, the possibilities and the prospect, it was definitely yes for me.

"These cars are well built and because they are so quick, they will show some great races and I'm sure having good drivers and good cars on the circuit will provide great entertainment. That's what the crowd want and what you want to see on TV."

Tahinci competed in GP2 throughout 2007 while Pier Guidi was part of Scuderia Playteam's assault on the FIA GT championship aboard a Maserati MC-12

"I am really looking forward to the chance to drive the car. Looking at the technical specifications, it is going to be very challenging," Pier Guidi said.

"The opportunity of competing in Superleague Formula with Scuderia Playteam is exciting for me because these guys are really like family for me.

"I am actually an AC Milan fan, but now I'm wearing the Galatasaray colours, I will be doing my best to beat that car and when the two clubs play each other in European football, I will have to start cheering for Galatasaray."

Like all race teams involved in Superleague Formula, Scuderia Playteam will oversee the efforts of two football clubs in the championship.

With Galatasaray already assigned to them, the Italian squad is looking closer to home for their second Superleague Formula entry.

"We're an Italian team but we're involved with two football clubs, so one will be Italian and for the second, we chose Galatasaray," Giannoccaro said.

"I love this city, I love this country, I feel Turkey is very close to Italian culture so I think that we can do the best for Galatasary as a team.

"I believe Superleague Formula is a big idea and a big opportunity, because motorsport and football together puts together two important things.

"One is brand awareness that motorsport does not always have, and the other is the fact that there are more than one billion fans all over the world supporting their football clubs."

Galatasaray became the 11th club to be launched by Superleague Formula this weekend. Three more club announcements are expected in the coming weeks and a total of 20 clubs will line up on the grid when the first race kicks off at Donington Park in the UK in August.

The 750-horsepower, V-12 powered Superleague Formula car hit the track for the first time at Donington this week. A total of six, three-day tests are scheduled during the development phase. The next outing will be at the Monteblanco circuit in Spain later this month. French driver, Bruce Jouanny is acting as the series official test driver.

-credit: superleagueformulamedia.com

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