Maranello, 26 May – Fernando Alonso will be the special guest starter of the 82nd Le Mans 24 Hours, which takes place at the legendary La Sarthe circuit on 14 and 15 June. The Scuderia Ferrari driver will wave the flag to send the racers on their way, thus joining other notable start officials, such as Gianni Agnelli, back in 1968 and Ferrari President Luca di Montezemolo, who did the honours in 2009.
The Automobile Club de l’Ouest invited Alonso as a leading representative of Ferrari, which has played a significant part in the history of Le Mans and also following on from several comments President Montezemolo has made relating to the technology and car development linked to this event.
Fernando is delighted to have been asked: “I am very happy to have been chosen to start this race,” he told www.ferrari.com, “because it is one of a handful of races that has defined the history of motor sport.” Alonso will be able to see at first hand the Endurance cars, that this year more than ever have many elements in common with Formula 1 cars. “I’m keen to check out the details on this type of car. In Formula 1, we have also entered the hybrid era and I am curious to find out more about the working methods and technology involved in this series.”
At Le Mans, Fernando will also be able to meet up with old friends. “For sure, it will be nice to see Mark Webber, who is a great friend of mine. We miss him in Formula 1 and I want to know how he’s getting on in Endurance racing.” Fernando will also be able to lend his support to the AF Corse drivers – Bruni, Fisichella and Vilander, as well as Rigon, Calado and Beretta – who will be aiming for another win for Ferrari in this legendary race, after the 458 Italia GT2, in the hands of Giancarlo Fisichella, “Gimmi” Bruni and Toni Vilander, won in 2012.