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Alessandro Zanardi Completes First Proper Test aboard the Z4 GT3

The true embodiment of a Phoenix, Alessandro Zanardi proved over the years that, if you’re dedicated enough, you can fulfill your dreams, no matter how crazy they might seem at first.
BMW Z4 GT3 7 photos
Photo: BMW
Alessandro ZanardiAlessandro ZanardiAlessandro ZanardiAlessandro ZanardiAlessandro Zanardi in his BMW Z4 GT3Alessandro Zanardi in his BMW Z4 GT3
The Italian lost both its legs in a serious crash while racing back in 2001, doctors claiming that he will never race again. Pushed by what some might described as “an outrageous amount of ambition”, Alessandro proved everyone wrong just two years later when he returned to the track in a specially prepared car that can be driven using exclusively your arms.

BMW was there to help him along and this year it will be renewing the collaboration with the 47-year old champion to make history, once again.

However, the road to the first race of the Blancpain Sprint Series that will kick-off on April 21st in Nogaro (France) won’t be easy. The team and driver actually just finished the first proper test-drive with the Z4 GT3 this week, at “Autodromo Vallelunga”, near Rome (Italy).

Of course, the team assessed the way the car responds and how the controls are calibrated, Alessandro pushing it to the limit and even going off track at one point, damaging parts of the vehicles and retiring for the day. However, over the 3 days of testing, improvements were made and Zanardi became more than enthusiastic by the end.

“Honestly, it is very hard not to totally show my enthusiasm, and I don’t want to sound too overconfident, but after this test I have every reason to be confident”, Zanardi summed up.

“Because not only the throttle mechanism, the brake pedal and the special clutch, but also all the other controls created for my personal needs are working so well we were able to focus on the set-up of the car. Just this fact is good news. But in addition, we are going home knowing that we showed considerable performance in terms of lap times,” he added.

Talking about the car, he said: “The BMW Z4 GT3 is literally sheer driving pleasure. We have been able to be fast on worn tyres, we have been able to really learn the car and we have been able to make changes to it which helped us to better understand what we should do for qualifying, and what to do for the race to have a consistent machine.”
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