Gianni Morbidelli wants full-time V8 ride
Italian ex-Formula One pilot Gianni Morbidelli hopes that a strong showing in this weekend’s Armor All Gold Coast 600 will lead to a full-time drive in the V8 Supercar Championship Series.
The 42 year old currently races in the International Superstars Series, which features V8 powered, rear wheel drive, four dour sedans – albeit in much more standard form than our V8 Supercars.
Morbidelli will drive with Dean Fiore in the Panasonic Falcon FG this weekend, and is expected to impress.
“I’ve been thinking about this category as one of the best in the world, for a few years now,” Morbidelli told Speedcafe.com.au.
“I’d like to come and do more than just this one round.
“I’ve not had the opportunity to test one of these cars before, so this weekend is a big opportunity for me.
“I know that if i can do well, it will create more opportunities for me in the future.”
Morbidelli recently spent two seasons in the now defunct Middle Eastern Speedcar Series – where a field of ex-Formula One drivers competed against each other in identical specification NASCAR-type machines.
Morbidelli won the 2008/09 championship, and believes there are definite similarities between the Speedcars and V8 Supercars.
“The Speedcar experience should help, for sure,” he said.
“It is a shame that the series does not exist anymore. The cars were a set package, with no development from the driver. It was a very fun series, a great concept.
“The cars were how you say, very rudimentary. A lot of horsepower, but not so nice in the corners, and no electronics or anything like that.”
Despite the experience, the Italian refused to predict how he’ll go this weekend.
“It is not possible to say where we’ll be,” he said.
“A few (of the other international drivers) have experience in these cars before, so we cannot expect to be the fastest. We will see. For now I think about today only.”