Junqueira to make debut for Brazil team on the streets of Durban
A1 Team Brazil announced today that former F3000 champion and Champ Car winner Bruno Junqueira will join the squad to lead the charge at this weekend's Durban round of the 2006/07 A1GP World Cup of Motorsport in South Africa.
Performing back-up duties for the team will be 18-year-old Luiz Razia, who will also have his first taster of the A1GP car when he steps into the cockpit for the rookie practice sessions on Friday. Along with this all-new driver line-up, the weekend will also see the debut of a brand new paint scheme for the Team Brazil car.
Junqueira raced with Ganassi and more recently with Newman/Haas in Champ Car alongside Sebastien Bourdais. He has yet to pen a deal for the new season but recently tested with Dale Coyne Racing.
"I originally spoke to the team at the start of this season, when I was just starting to drive again after my accident, so now I'm very happy to be joining the team and the series, it's a great feeling to be representing Brazil. I think the series is really good and I have some friends that race there and really enjoy it, so I can't wait to get in the car."
"In the US, where I've raced for many years, I race on a lot of street tracks so I am used to the kind of challenge that we will face in Durban. Even back when I raced in Europe in F3000 I always enjoyed the street tracks, in fact I won the Monaco race in 2000, so I am sure I will be very comfortable this weekend.
Durban is a track that some of the drivers have experience of from last year, but I know that Team Brazil had a strong car last year, so I am looking forward to doing well."
"I was really happy to join A1 Team Brazil in Australia for the first time. The series is very well organized and competitive and I immediately felt at home with the series and the people in the team. I'm very happy that I can come back to the team and take part in the Durban race. I will be getting to know the car and the track, because everything is new for me, and try to help Bruno as much as possible. I've driven on several street tracks in Brazil, so hopefully that will help me."
Emerson Fittipaldi, Team Principal
"I am very happy that we have signed Bruno to race in Durban. He's focused, successful, determined to do well and very experienced on street circuits because of his Champ Car career. His track record is incredible so I think he is going to be a new strength for the Brazil team and I am very optimistic about the weekend. We are still providing opportunities for the young guys though, and Luiz Razia will drive in the rookie testing on Friday morning. I am very happy with the way our new engineer is working out and I am happy with Tuka and Raphael, but I think now we need someone experienced on this kind of circuit to see how we can run." A1 Team Brazil