ORTELLI TO JOIN RUSSIAN AGE RACING FOR SEASON FINALES November 3, 2005 -- Stephane Ortelli, the 1998 Le Mans 24-hours winner and former FIA GT Champion, will join the Russian Age Racing Aston Martin team for the penultimate round of the FIA GT...
ORTELLI TO JOIN RUSSIAN AGE RACING FOR SEASON FINALES
November 3, 2005 -- Stephane Ortelli, the 1998 Le Mans 24-hours winner and former FIA GT Champion, will join the Russian Age Racing Aston Martin team for the penultimate round of the FIA GT Championship in Dubai.
The Frenchman will share the Aston Martin DBR9 with Christophe Bouchut, while Alexey Vasiliev and Nikolay Fomenko will drive the team's Ferrari 550 Maranello. It will be the first time since 2004 that the two Russians have shared a car without the guidance of Bouchut.
Ortelli started the season driving for the factory Aston Martin Racing team, scoring victory at the Sebring 12-hours in Florida with David Brabham and Darren Turner, and hopes to finish the season with a similar result, driving with Bouchut.
"Every year I get the call to drive with the team, and with Christophe, and I like it that we are back together again," said Ortelli, who will drive an Audi R8 at this weekend's Le Mans Endurance Series race in Istanbul. "I started the season with a win in the Aston Martin and this is the same car, with a different team, so it would be nice to finish it in the same way."
The Frenchman, who also drives in the World Touring Car Championship, is relishing the chance to get back into the DBR9. "I have probably done more miles in this car than any other this season as it was new at the start of the year and we had to do a lot of testing miles with it," he said.
Rob Schirle, who owns the Cirtek outfit which runs the Russian Age Racing team, added: "Stephane drives with us just about every year in one-off deals, and works well with Christophe. Given our performance at Zhuhai, where Christophe qualified the Aston on the pole and set fastest race lap before he skidded on someone else's oil, our first win in the championship is a very real possibility."
The final two rounds of the FIA GT Championship take place in Dubai on Friday, November 18, and Bahrain on Friday, November 25.