To date, only one Brazilian pilot won the victory in the general classification of 24 Hours of Business-Francorchamps: it was Christian Fittipaldi, at the beginning of his career, in 1993. Can the situation change in 2022?
For this year, three experienced representatives of the country ride in the top teams and have a good chance to finish on the top step of the podium in the main race of the year for GT3 cars. Check out who they are below:
Brazilian drivers at the 2022 24 Hours of Spa-Francorchamps
Daniel Serra (Iron Lynx Ferrari #71): The 2022 season has been one of many changes for the three-time Stock Car champion. Serra left his post with the Ferrari factory team in the WEC and moved to the official team in the GTWC Endurance, the world’s biggest GT3 car championship.
If anyone saw this change as a demotion, it would not be better for Serra. Apart from the Italians Antonio Fuoco and Davide Rigon, the Brazilian is the current leader of the championship, having led Ferrari in the previous stage, Paul Ricard.
At Spa-Francorchamps, the No. 71 Ferrari scored provisional pole, but ended up dropping to 11th in Super Pole, the equivalent of Q3 in F1. In any case, he is among the favorites to win.
Ferrari’s good run is so good that Serra chose to defend the Italian carmaker this weekend at Spa-Francorchamps, even though there is a date clash with Stock Car, another championship where it is competing for the lead. Usually it was the Brazilian tournament that ended up taking priority.
In addition to his three in the Brazilian division, Serra is one of the most successful competitors in the long-term competition. He took two Le Mans victories (both in the GTE-Pro category), as well as already leading at Petit Le Mans, in the USA, and having pole positions at Daytona, Sebring and Petit Le Mans, all for Imsa.
Augusto Farfus (Rowe BMW #98): Historically, BMW has always been the favorite at the 24 Hours of Spa-Francorchamps. After all, he has won 24 times in Belgium, three times that of Porsche, the second most successful car manufacturer. The most recent was in 2018, by Tom Blomqvist, Phillip Eng and Christian Krognes.
For this reason, betting against the German brand could be a huge mistake, even more so as the new M4 GT3, launched last year, is starting to get good results in 2022, especially in Imsa and DTM.
But BMW’s new car has yet to win some of the year’s biggest long-distance races, such as Daytona and the Nurburgring, which casts doubt on the company’s chances of winning at Spa-Francorchamps.
As there are only two BMWs in the Pro category – one for the three teams of Farfus, Nick Yelloly and Nicky Catsburg – and one for the junior team, the odds are slim compared to Audi and Porsche with six factory cars each.
It was in Spa-Francorchamps that the BMW M4 started, two years ago, leading the combined training, which is always a good sign.
Besides, Farfus is a megaveteran of endurance. He has already won the 24 Hours of Nurburgring, the GT Car World Cup (in Macau), the 24 Hours of Daytona (in the GTLM category) in 2019 and 2020 and the IGTC in 2020.
Felipe Nasr (EMA Porsche #74): there are more question marks than answers about the 74 Porsche at the 24 Hours of Spa-Francorchamps, which will have the last Brazilian to compete for a full F1 season on board.
For starters, the EMA team is returning to European racing after two years away, competing only in Australia.
In a David vs. Goliath battle, the team excelled at the 2020 12 Hours of Bathurst – the last famous race before the disaster – by finishing second in a McLaren without any factory support. But since then he has only ridden in Australia in the local Porsche Cup.
With a view to returning to the world championship, he received factory support from Porsche for the 24 Hours of Francorchamps. You will have the best team at your disposal. After all, Nasr, along with Australian Matt Campbell and Frenchman Matthieu Jamineu, won the 24 Hours of Daytona earlier this year in the GTDPro category.
In addition to the Daytona victory, the Brazilian is a two-time Imsa champion, having already won the 12 Hours of Sebring and also Petit Le Mans. Next year he will drive a Porsche LMDh model.
It remains to be seen whether Nasr’s relative inexperience in GT3 racing and the time the EMA team has been out of international competition will jeopardize the final result in Belgium.
Now that you know who the Brazilian drivers are at the 2022 24 Hours of Spa-Francorchamps, you can click here to see the full podium results, as well as those for the main categories of world motorsport over the weekend.
And below you have all the cars that participate in this traditional race (click on the image to enlarge, if necessary).