F1 Fanatic - World Endurance Championship
i just read that Kamui will race a Ferrari 458 Italia in the GTE Pro class for the factory AF Corse team.
Fantastic news. We probably won’t see any banzai moves from him in GT racing, but he developed the ability to manage a race while at Sauber, and that will serve him well.
I saw another incredible stat: He becomes the first ever Asian driver to race for Ferrari. And I mean any Ferrari, Scuderia or otherwise…
I’m happy he’s decided to do some racing this year, rather than do nothing and hope to find an F1 drive for 2014.
I believe it is a good place for him, I think he mostly realised his potential in F1, but it would be utterly fantastic if he could become a strong GT racer, maybe prototypes one day soon. Kobayashi winning Le Mans would be brilliant.
Well, I would love to see him back on F1 next year! Bye Massa! :-)
WOW- I find that real hard! I saw Kamuai take 3rd in Suzuka last year- I was 3 deep next to the podium and have never seen a happier person! Now he is out- may come back but I doubt it!!
It seems to me mid and low tier dont give much chance and based on money not talent (not new, but harsher now). If things went a bit different is it KK at McLaren and Checo out ??
I liked KK in F1 and hope to see him back!!
I’m heading to Silverstone next weekend. Hopefully get to meet him at some point if I hang around in the paddock long enough!
@ajokay I’m not sure if Silverstone will be anything like Sebring, but I’m guessing that most WEC/ALMS races have some form of autograph sessions set up for you to meet the drivers. One thing I’ve found is that the ex-F1 refugees tend to be a bit less approachable vs the lifetime sports car guys. Being fan-friendly isn’t something that’s emphasized in F1 so you can see how their mindsets towards the fans are mostly set in the F1 way.
@codesurge There is a pitlane walkabout on the Sunday, but the paddock is open all weekend. I met Martin Brundle last year and had a brief encounter with Alex Wurz and Peter Dunbreck, so yeah, the opportunities are there. I imagine Kamui would be a fairly approachable guy though.
@codesurge @ajokay I was up at Silverstone on Friday and hung around the paddock between FP1 and FP2 and got quite a few pictures of drivers. I did meet Kamui but very briefly, I was hanging out mainly by Bruno’s garage but keeping an eye on the Ferrari motorhome down the paddock and Kamui came in and out a couple of times, but every time he sprinted between them. I think you’re right in the sense that the ex F1 drivers are kinda expecting a mob of fans, screaming and shouting at them. Me and another guy managed to stop him with an improvised pincer movement and got his autograph (woohoo!) but I think we were probably two of the very few who managed it. Not sure how much more he relaxed over the weekend but I hope he did. Didn’t see Bruno, but don’t know how much that was down to the engine problems in FP1. Hopefully once they get into the swing of WEC they’ll feel able to interact with the fans a bit more!
I very much became an un-fan of Kamui this weekend. On 4 different occasions did we cross paths. Tried to shake hands, have a chat, wish him good luck, get a photograph and/or autograph. Blanked. Completely blanked each time. My friends managed to get a scrawl that could only be described as half an autograph out of him… I’d rather like that money back now that I gave him to help him get his F1 seat…
I don’t think it’s anything to do with being ex-F1. I was also fortunate enough to happen across Tonio Luizzi, Alex Wurz, Bruno Senna and Alex Brundle. All smiles, hand shakes, autographs and photographs. Anthony Davidson was the icing on the cake though. Took time to chat, post for numerous photos. He even signed my ticket stub right before he put his helmet on, taking great care in doing so. Top notch bloke.
@ajokay Sorry to hear that – this can be the problem with meeting your heroes!
I swear there’s something about driving for Ferrari that changes nice drivers into not-so-nice drivers.
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