Following the arrival of Stefano Colleti, the Romeo Ferraris team expands its driver roster for the PURE ETCR season that is about to begin, adding GT Racing star Rodrigo Baptista to its ranks as the third member of its line-up for this 2021.
The 24-year-old Brazilian joins the aforementioned Coletti and Luca Filippi in the Opera team, to compete with the Alfa Romeo Giulia ETCR in the first ever fully electric multi-brand touring car world championship.
After a winning season in Formula 3 in his homeland, the racer from Sao Paulo, Brazil, who is led by his PURE ETCR partner Augusto Farfus, switched to GT competition at just 19 years old and immediately realized his promise by conquering Brazil’s Porsche GT3 Cup title in 2017.
Experience on the slopes
Despite his young age, Baptista arrives with a good scroll traveled in different circuits of world motorsport. He has competed internationally and finished with an outstanding second place in GTE Am at the 2019 24 Hours of Le Mans, while also finishing third overall in GT World Challenge America. Last year he was third in the Pro-Am class in the same series.
From Romeo Ferraris they expressed their satisfaction for having the Brazilian pilot on the grid. “We are delighted to welcome Rodrigo – a driver who is still young, but has already shown his skills in different high-level series for tin-top cars – to our line-up,” said Michela Cerruti, Operations Manager of the team.
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“With him, Stefano and Luca, we have a very coherent trio in terms of experience and talent, and this will be an asset for us in our first PURE ETCR season and for the long-term development of our Giulia ETCR project. We are excited to be at Vallelunga for the 2021 season-opener,” she added.
On his part, Baptista said he was very happy about this new challenge in the electric touring car series. “The prospect of being part of a series with such a great future, with all-electric cars and based on environmental sustainability, appeared immediately very attractive.”
This is why I warmly welcomed the opportunity to race with Romeo Ferraris in PURE ETCR, and I am very happy to be able to participate in an ambitious project such as the Giulia ETCR,” he said.
The Brazilian rider assured that “it will be exciting to race on prestigious tracks and fight against great names and brands. I want to thank FS Management, the company of Augusto Farfus and Mauricio Slaviero, who have chosen to support me in this journey. It will be an honour and lots of fun to share the PURE ETCR field with Augusto.”
While it is true that Romeo Ferraris did not have its driver roster ready, the team was already on the debut track in Vallelunga, Italy, in the so-called stress test carried out in the category.
During the test, they made long and short routes of the Italian circuit. Furthermore, they had the possibility to test on different track configurations and with different battery voltages, allowing the drivers to continue development work with the car.
Written by I Jhonattan González