RISI COMPETIZIONE FINISHES FOURTH IN CLASS IN 2021 RETURN TO ROLEX 24 AT DAYTONA

Risi Competizione Ferrari 488 GTLM No. 62:
James Calado (GBR)
Alessandro Pier Guidi (ITA)
Davide Rigon (ITA)
Jules Gounon (FRA)

(Daytona Beach, Fla., January 31, 2021)…The No. 62 Risi Competizione Ferrari Team came to the 59th annual Rolex 24 At Daytona with one goal in mind – to win the race. Team Principal Giuseppe Risi has fielded cars in this twice-around-the-clock endurance classic since 1998. This year’s Ferrari 488 GTLM is the 22nd entry for the Italian team owner and Ferrari of Houston and Ferrari of the Woodland Texas dealership owner.

Although the Risi crew and drivers ran a very strong race, they didn’t quite make it to the podium, finishing in fourth position in class. Two GTLM cars were on the lead Lap 770, and the third and fourth place cars were just one lap down after 24 hours of racing in the 59th running of the Rolex 24 At Daytona at Daytona International Speedway.

Drivers of the Risi Competizione Ferrari GTLM entry for 2021 were Ferrari Competizioni GT factory drivers James Calado, Alessandro Pier Guidi, Davide Rigon and young French endurance hotshoe Jules Gounon. They all had very solid drives and the popular No. 62 Ferrari led on several occasions as Race Engineer Rick Mayer tried to use strategy to achieve a top step podium outcome.

Pier Guidi clocked the fastest GTLM lap of the race during the early morning hours, on Lap 429, with a time of 1:42.411.

The race was relatively by the book for the Houston, Texas-based team. They cycled through their drivers and tried to take advantage of the 11 cautions throughout the course of the 24-hour race.

Although a hit by another car on the first lap caused a bit of a fright for starting driver Pier Guidi and the Risi crew, fortunately they didn’t suffer any setbacks. Calado had a brief spin with a LMP3 entry at the Daytona “Bus Stop” that required a pit stop for flat spotted tires and check for damage.

The team had to serve two drive through penalties, one for Calado’s spin, for which he was found guilty by Race Control, and one when Pier Guidi had to make an emergency fuel splash when caught out at a caution.

The No. 62 Ferrari battled between first and fifth place in the competitive GTLM class most of the race, depending on pit stops, cautions and other circumstances and they battled with the two factory Corvettes and BMWs throughout the race.

The winning No. 10 Daytona Prototype car completed 807 laps. The Risi Ferrari completed 769 laps for its fourth-place finish in the GTLM class and 14th overall in the 49-car field which saw minimal attrition. Weather for race varied from mostly cloudy and windy today with highs of mid 70s degrees F to lows in the high 50-degree temperatures last night.

The last time that the Risi Competizione team stood on the podium was in 2019 with a second-place class finish after leading much of the late race. Risi Competizione finished fourth with this very same chassis at last September’s postponed 24 Hours of Le Mans race.

Risi Competizione pit stop shows James Calado getting out of the Ferrari 488 GTLM and Alessandro Pier Guidi ready to strap in

QUOTES:

Rick Mayer, Risi Competizione Race Engineer:
“We were not competitive again this year. The others all had a power advantage to our Ferrari. That’s just an imbalance in the rules and out of the team’s control. It was a race of attrition and luck for us, which didn’t go our way. The car balance was good; all the drivers were happy with the general car and we had great pit work and no strategy errors, but no pace. All the drivers and the crew did a great job. It’s rough to stay up 36+ hours knowing you’ll only move forward if others have issues, makes for a long two days.”

James Calado, driver No. 62 Risi Competizione Ferrari 488 GTLM:
“Thanks to all the team, the mechanics, and everyone that helped out over the last two weeks. The guys did an amazing job in the pit stops. It was faultless. We did everything we could but we struggled with pace. Thanks to Giuseppe for coming back. You can see he’s massively passionate and it’s such a shame that it’s not recognized properly because we’re here to race fairly and it is unfortunate that it’s been another year where we’ve been at quite a large disadvantage compared to our competitors. It’s a tough one to take again but we’ll continue to do our job the way we’re doing and let’s see what happens in the future.”

Alessandro Pier Guidi, driver No. 62 Risi Competizione Ferrari 488 GTLM:
“It’s a bit frustrating, all the years we’ve come here with the GTLM F488 we’ve not had a fair BoP. I really feel bad for Giuseppe, he’s so passionate and so much money and effort is spent to race for attrition and hope for others to falter so you can move up. I hope one time we will have a level playing field to compete in Daytona.”

Davide Rigon, starting driver No. 62 Risi Competizione Ferrari 488 GTLM:
“The BoP was sadly not in our favor. The team, anyway, I have to say, did an amazing job. I have to say thank you Giuseppe and every single person on the team that did their job 110%. I’m super proud and happy of the team. The car was awesome but we were missing some speed on the straight line, especially the last few hours. I really enjoyed this race with my teammates; they all did an amazing job. I’m happy we gave it our all, but it was not enough. Fourth place…it’s always good to finish a 24-hour race but we deserve a bit more.”

Jules Gounon, driver No. 62 Risi Competizione Ferrari 488 GTLM:
“It was a bit disappointing to finish fourth. It’s always a disappointment when you’re not on the podium but to be honest, the Risi team did a fantastic job. We did the maximum we could do with what we had, especially BoP-wise. It’s been an honor for me to be driving again for Giuseppe and the team. (We were) fourth for Le Mans and fourth for Daytona. Looks like this car is made to be fourth. Maybe next time we will have a better one. It was an amazing race though and I’m proud to have been part of it with Giuseppe and his team and hope to see everyone again soon.”

The Risi Competizione Ferrari team has not yet announced any additional racing plans for 2021.

For more information, please go to www.risicompetizione.com and follow us on Facebook/RisiCompetizione, Twitter @RisiComp and Instagram @RisiComp.