Raffaele Marciello will be replacing Felipe Nasr in Friday Practice 1 in Malaysia this weekend. The Ferrari Drivers Academy member and GP2 driver will be making his F1 weekend debut with Sauber, who are of course customers to Ferrari’s Power Units. This will also mark the first time an Italian has driven a Grand Prix car since Jarno Trulli and Tonio Liuzzi in 2011.
“It will be exciting to drive the C34 for the first time,” Marciello said. “That will also be the same for the Italians, as we have not had an Italian driver in Formula 1 for quite a few years. I am confident I can do a good job as well as supporting the team in order to find a set-up for the car which suits the track.”
Marciello will be competing with Trident in this years GP2 season alongside Rene Binder, after spending last year with Racing Engineering. Of course Malaysia used to be on the GP2 calendar before it was taken off in 2014, so it seems Maricello has limited experience around what is notoriously described as abrasive before heading out of the garage.
“I have never been to Malaysia before” he added, “but I know the track quite well from the Ferrari simulator in Maranello, and I am sure I can get to learn it fast once I drive there.”