Rome Proud of Fisichella, Hail Ferrari Decision

Giancarlo Fisichella's appointment as Ferrari race driver for the remainder of the 2009 season has led to plenty of enthusiasm in his native Rome. The Italian capital hailed Fisico's deal with Ferrari, with plenty of high-profiled figures congratulating the Formula One veteran for his upcoming debut for the prancing horse.

AS Roma captain Francesco Totti was the first to hail Ferrari's decision, sending his fellow countryman an enthusiastic encouragement for the upcoming Italian Grand Prix, at Monza.

I am very confident in your racing skills. A warm salute and good luck at Ferrari,” sounded Totti's message to the former Force India driver, as reported by Italian newspaper Corriere dello Sport.

Former MotoGP rider and Rome-born Max Biaggi was also happy with Ferrari's announcement on Thursday, as he reckoned he was waiting for a long time an Italian driver to compete for the nation's emblematic car manufacturer.

I am very happy for Giancarlo. It's a great opportunity for him and, honestly, we Italians were waiting for a long time to see an Italian driver racing in an Italian car. He did a great job at Spa and this is certainly the best time to jump into a Ferrari. We sent each other an SMS and I was waiting the official confirmation with great confidence,” said Biaggi.

I am happy that Giancarlo will be able to enter the heart of the Ferrari tifosi. He will race on an Italian machinery, just like I am doing in the World Superbike (for Aprilia). For the Made in Italy, this is a great thing,” added the Italian rider.

Valentino Rossi, known to be a Ferrari passionate himself, also welcomed Fisichella at Maranello. “I am very happy for Giancarlo. Apart from Luca Badoer, it was very long since an Italian driver competed for Ferrari,” said Rossi.

The most encouraging message of all came from Rome's very mayor Gianni Alemanno, who revealed Fisico's deal with Ferrari is a great boost for Rome's chances of hosting a Formula One race in the near future.

I am very happy because, finally, a Roman driver is being valued. We now have a great ace for pushing for a Rome GP in Formula One. In due time, we will organize a promoting committee to make the official request to the FIA. The objective is to host a Rome GP by 2012,” said Alemanno, according to the aforementioned source.
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