It is a curious fact that the last Italian Ferrari driver to win the World Championship was the great Alberto Ascari; that was in 1953. Since then, Italian drivers have come and gone with the Scuderia, but few have delivered. The most recent Italian to race for Ferrari is Giancarlo Fisichella.

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The young Roman enjoyed a successful career in Formula One over many years, having made his debut in 1996 with the sadly missed Minardi team – a team known for bringing youngsters into the sport – and then driving for various teams, with his three career wins being at Benetton and Jordan.

Dream Ferrari Debut

After Felipe Massa was side-lined by injury in the middle of 2009, Ferrari needed a replacement. They first drafted in test driver Luca Badoer for two unsuccessful races, and then asked Force India to release Fisichella for the remainder of the season.

His debut for Ferrari came at no less a place than Monza, the traditional home of the Tifosi and the Italian Grand Prix. With no prior time in the car, Fisichella could only qualify in 14th position, although in the race he finished 9th, and on the lead lap.

Fisichella struggled for the rest of the season, in a car that even Kimi Raikkonen found difficult, and failed to score any points for Ferrari. He was enlisted as reserve driver for the 2010 season, and remains a part of the team in an ambassadorial role today.

Giancarlo the Man

Fisichella has always been regarded as a driver with immense natural talent, and one who perhaps did not get the breaks he deserved. He is a devoted family man – he married Luna in 2009 – and is the father of three children.

Always pleasant and approachable, Fisichella perhaps went to Ferrari too late in his career to make an impact but, it should be said, perhaps he avoided the ‘curse’ of Italian drivers failing to succeed at Maranello.



Wins – 3 (Benetton and Jordan)

Starts – 229 (5 for Ferrari)

Podiums – 19

Pole Positions – 2