Following the recent announcement that Alain Menu is to return to the British Touring Car Championship, another former champion has confirmed his return. Fabrizio Giovanardi will return to the series behind the wheel of a Motorbase Performance prepared Ford Focus ST NGTC for Airwaves Racing.
The announcement was made by Team Principal Dave Bartrum on a special edition of Tin-Top Tuesday – the championship’s premier radio show, hosted by paddock favourite Alan Hyde. “This is a very important year for Airwaves Racing,” Bartrum said. “This is going to be the one when we really do underline the product we’ve built here at Motorbase Performance and Fabrizio is the man to show you how it should go.”
“I tried to get Fabrizio on board a couple of years ago,” he continued. “We’ve talked a lot about touring cars and this year I decided just before Christmas that was the right way to try and go. It was something that Airwaves wanted; they wanted us to up our game, that was one of the things that set their criteria and I was very happy to meet it. The intentions are the same as last year, the team wants to win. We want to win races and we want to go after the championship and if you’re going to go after the championship this is the year to do it. There are thirty cars on the grid and seven guys that have won the championship; I think it’s a fantastic year for Giovanardi to come back and join us.”
“There’s a lot of work gone into the car over the winter,” added Bartrum. “I’m really pleased with the work that the team has done, they’ve worked very hard. As I’ve said before, you need to stop take a step back and look sometimes and that’s what we’ve done and now we’re hoping to get the reward for that. We’ve always been proud of our driver line up and no more this year than last year, but this year it’s got a little Italian spice to it that might take the team forward that little bit more.”
Giovanardi, who has won the championship twice, is relishing his return after four years away. “I am really looking forward to coming back to this special championship,” he said. “For the last four years I have done long distance racing and for me, it’s quite boring! I need fighting championships and this is the best place to find that, so I’m really happy to be back. I want to come here and try to win another championship; I need to win the third one! Obviously, I have to respect the other guys out there but I’m still tough, I’m fierce tough!”