Massively successful Risi Competizione driver Pierre Kaffer will return to the Texas-based team, though for only four races, in 2010.

German Kaffer won the trifecta of the Le Mans 24 Hours, 12 Hours of Sebring and Petit Le Mans with the Ferrari team last year as he competed a full American Le Mans Series (ALMS) season alongside Brazilian Jaime Melo.

However despite these and many other successes, 2010 has seen Kaffer lose his full time drive to Italian and fellow Ferrari stalwart Gianmaria Bruni.

But today it was announced that Kaffer, 33, will return to the driving seat of Risi's Ferrari 430, in it familiar, iconic shade of red, for a limited program this year.

He will act as third driver, alongside Bruni and Melo, to defend his 2009 titles in the three big endurance races of the year, but will also deputise for Bruni, who has a prior commitment in Europe for the ALMS round at Road America on August 22.

“I really like the team so it's great to be back,” says Kaffer. “And, from my side, I will, as always, do my very best to help defend our titles. I am sure that, with Gimmi [Bruni] and Jaime, we present a very strong driver combination for these endurance races. I'm very happy to be back in the USA for the three races as I love racing there and, with Ferrari, I think we have a strong package. I hope I'll be able to help the team a lot.”

“We obviously work very closely with Ferrari in all aspects of our racing, including our driver line up,” Principal Giuseppe Risi says, explaining the initial decision to leave Kaffer out of the driving seat. “Jaime and Gianmaria are the two drivers with the most experience in the world of the F430, as they have both been involved with its development from the start, so that was our decision for the ALMS sprint races.”

“Pierre, however, is a perfect fit as their endurance partner and was fortunately available to us amongst his European racing commitments. He brings experience, stability and undoubted talent, as we saw last season, and everyone on the team is delighted to welcome him back.”

Photo credit: James Boone