Two busy weeks are lying ahead of the Scuderia Ferrari Marlboro on and off the track, with some of them extremely nice.
At the Motorshow Bologna the official Scuderia test driver Luca Badoer
did several laps behind the wheel of the world Champion F2008 in front
of thousands of spectators. Bologna is already a traditional event at
the end of the Formula 1 season and is a great opportunity for many
fans to get close to Ferrari.
Luca did not only drive "his" single seater, he also got behind the
wheel of a Fiat 500 Abarth, the Fiat’s racing version, which will start
in the single marque racing series as of the upcoming year at the same
time as the Ferrari Challenge Trofeo Pirelli.
The F2008 will be on the track on 9th
December at Jerez de la Frontera for the first three official test days
for the upcoming season. There will be two cars at the box, but
considering the limited mileage only Kimi Raikkonen will go out on the
track while Felipe Massa will reach the team on 10th December.
The technical program has three main goals, working on the engine’s
reliability, because as of next year the engine has to run many more
miles, checking the slicks from Bridgestone and investigating the best
possible set up solutions for the car.
On 12th December Kimi and Felipe will
be at Monte Carlo for the FiA prize giving. Team Principal Stefano
Domenicali will also be there to receive the Costructors’ Cup, won by
the team this year.
On 13th December the team will meet at
Maranello for the traditional Christmas lunch, while in the evening
they will attend a show at the Palamalaguti Bologna offered to the
employees and their families.
The drivers and Domenicali will participate in the prize giving of
the "Caschi d’Oro", the Golden Helmets, organized by the Italian
magazine Autosprint, another traditional moment for Ferraristi in
Sunday is kids day at the Fiorano circuit steering pad. The kids,
all the children of Ferrari employees, will celebrate Christmas
together with the official drivers.
On 15th December the tests start again at the Parc Algarve circui at
Portimao in Southern Portugal. There will be two cars for this last
test session in 2008, one driven by Felipe Massa the other by Luca
Eventually a very intense year will draw to an end and the work
will stop also at Maranello or a couple of days, the 2009 season is
approaching and we can’t relax too much.
So there’s just one month to go till 2009, and the new year couldn’t come any sooner for Kimi and his fans! I think the way Ferrari revolve around the family and community during the off-season, as well as working hard, creates a unique atmosphere unlike other teams. I’m sure Kimi sincerely means it when he says he’s happy at Ferrari.
Last year after the Ferrari World Finals, Kimi did attend all Ferrari events such as the Christmas celebration with the kids and the entertainment show for Ferrari (listen at 5.41 into this video of Kimi imitating an F1 car, as you would have recognised in my highlight video credits, they also played Kimi’s team radio after winning the world title in Brazil – it wasn’t broadcast on television as he said "fucking hell!") We’ll also see Kimi this weekend at the FIA gala (see him collect his trophy in 2007), so it hasn’t been a complete Kimi-drought after the season ended. Check out all of the December events last year. So, let’s hope Kimi relaxes and re-charges as much as he can as it’ll be back to business and serious testing. Kimi begins testing tomorrow for 3 days, and here’s the schedule.