Ex-F1 racer Pizzonia signs on for Auto GP campaign


Antonio Pizzonia has secured a full-time return to the Auto GP Series in 2015 after re-signing for Zele Racing.

The thirty-four-year-old Brazilian, who raced in twenty Formula 1 races for Jaguar Racing and Williams between 2003 and 2005, raced for Zele Racing in the season finale of the 2014 season of Auto GP in Portugal, finishing on the podium in race two, and also raced for the team in the round at Sonoma in the United States in 2012.

Pizzonia joins Colombian Andres Mendez in the team, with another driver yet to be announced before the season begins at the Hungaroring next month, with Team Principal Michael Zele welcoming the Brazilian back into the team for 2015.

“We are happy to continue the work we started last year with Pizzonia,” insisted Zele. “Compared to the final round of 2014 at Estoril, we will have more time to prepare well and we will also use the simulator.”

Pizzonia was not the only driver to be confirmed for 2015 on Wednesday, with Swiss driver Christof Von Grunigen agreeing a return to the series with Paolo Coloni Racing.

Twenty-three-year-old Von Grunigen made his Auto GP debut with Zele Racing last season at Monza, and took four top ten finishes in six races.

Paolo Coloni welcomed Von Grunigen to his team, saying: “I am delighted to welcome Christof, a really quick driver who showcased his skills during the last Auto GP season.

“I expect some great results from him for the P.C.R. colours this season.”

Pizzonia and Von Grunigen’s arrivals boost the car count up to five entries, alongside Mendez, Nikita Zlobin at Virtuosi UK and Giuseppe Cipriani at the Ibiza Racing Team.