No less than eight Ferrari 458 Italias will start the Gulf 12 Hours, at Abu Dhabi’s Yas Marina circuit. It’s the last significant Endurance race on the calendar and it features some guest drivers from other sports, keen to try their hand in a Ferrari. One of them is Jorge Lorenzo, a works Yamaha rider in MotoGP and he shares the number 99 Kessel Racing car with the Australian Liam Talbot, Italy’s Marco Zanuttini and the Belgian Jacques Duyver. The race takes place on the Yas Marina circuit less than a week after the Ferrari Challenge cars raced there in the Finali Mondiali.
From skis to four wheels. The other special guest driver is Didier Cuche, the Swiss ace who is well used to speed, but on skis. Cuche has won 21 Alpine skiing world cup races and 6 crystal cups, as well as a World Championship and a silver medal at the 1998 Nagano Winter Olympics in the Super G. Didier will race the Scuderia Villorba Corse 458 Italia, along with fellow countryman Christophe Hurni and Frenchman Cedric Mezard.
The AF Corse armada. There’s a particularly big fleet of four AF Corse cars. In number 3 will be the WEC championship’s Rookie of the Year, Davide Rigon, paired with fellow Italian Michele Rugolo and Australia’s Steve Wyatt. In car 4 we find Italy’s Marco Cioci and Piergiuseppe Perazzini, fresh from winning the Rome 6 Hours, teamed with Portugal’s Felipe Barreiros.
Car 5 is crewed by Thomas Flohr, Francesco Castellacci and Andrea Rizzoli, with Adrien De Leneer, Cedric Sbirrazzuoli and David Akhobadze in car 77. Kessel Racing also have a car for Russia’s Vadim Gitlin who took part in the aforementioned Finali Mondiali, Italy’s Marzo Frezza and Spain’s Isaac Tutumlu. The last 458 Italia on the list is entered by Dragon Racing and taking turns at the wheel will be the Saudi Mohammed Jawa, Britain’s Sean Walkin and Germany’s Jordan Grogor.