Successful first year for Alessandro Pier Guidi as a Ferrari factory Driver

By Victor Forner

Alessandro Pier Guidi completed a stunning first season as a Ferrari official driver in the FIA World Endurance Championship. An Italian driver winning the GT World Championship for the most prestigious Italian manufacturer and with an Italian team.

Alessandro Pier Guid was confirmed as a works driver earlier this year in replacement of the departing Gianmaria Bruni at the wheel of the AF Corse-run #51 Ferrari 488 GTE in the WEC.

Before this move, Alessandro Pier Guidi proved to be one  of the fastest GT drivers around. He raced for the customer BBT Racing team in the Asian Le Mans Series. He scored two pole positions and narrowly missed a third one in the Speang finale, only beaten by fellow Ferrari driver Alex Riberas.

Pier Gudi's 2017 season started at the Rolex 24 at Daytona where he clinched the GT Daytona pole and set the fastet in time of the race in class. Unfortunately, his Ferrari 488 GT3 did not finish the race.

Back to Europe, Alessandro Pier Guidi was really busy between two series. In addition to his effort in the WEC, he competed in the highly competitive Blancpain Endurance Cup with AF Corse, a series in which he had some ups and downs.

Alessandro Pier Guidi's road to the GT World Championship title started at Silverstone. He shared the #51 Ferrari 488 GTE with James Calado as they finished the British round in a strong second place in GTE-Pro.

Another second place came out at Spa-Francorchamps in the second round of the season. Pier Guidi was among the strongest in GTE-Pro as proved by his memorable overtaking on Olivier Pla at the demanding Eau Rouge.

Round three was the most important event of the season, the 24 Hours of Le Mans. Alessandro Pier Guidi and James Calado were joined by Michele Rugolo. The French endurance classic turned to be a very frustrating one for the Ferrari squad. Pier Guidi's #51 Ferrari 488 GTE was out of the points.

After the summer break, the FIA World Endurance Championship season resumed in Germany, at the legendary Nürburgring.  Alessandro Pier Guidi and James Calado bounced back very well and were victorious in GTE-Pro. The first ever victory for the Italian with Ferrari in the WEC.

Alessandro Pier Guidi and James Calado collected two other GTE-Pro victories, at the Circuit of the Americas and the Fuji Speedway.

The two drivers arrived at Bahrain as championship leaders ahead of their rivals from Porsche and Ford. And it was a perfect weekend for them with pole position and a strong second in class enough to clinch the drivers' GT World title.

2017 was a great year for Alessandro Pier Guidi with the Ferrari brand in the WEC and GT racing and there are no doubts that will be among the strongest in 2018.

Photos: Ferrari