The “Fast Lane” section hosts one of the most popular drivers of the Corse Clienti family, James Weiland. His debut in the Ferrari Challenge dates back to 2013 and he has made a name for himself with solid results in two continents. The American driver is, in fact, the only one to have taken the challenge, with some significant results, in both the European and the Stars and Stripes series. A world title in the Trofeo Pirelli Am, won last year at the Mugello World Finals, as well as the championship clinched in 2016 in the Challenge North America, also in the Trofeo Pirelli Am class, adorn his trophy cabinet.
This is your eighth season: what are your feelings and your expectations ahead of this new adventure?
“It gets harder and harder every year, but I love this series – it’s fantastic. Plus I love the environment and 99% per cent of the drivers are great people and I really feel at ease. I have fun, my family has fun, and the circuits are great. I simply love it.”
Which is the circuit that you love the most and which do you like the least?
“The one I like least is in the United States, it’s called Lime Rock and it’s very short. I feel at ease on street circuits such as Montreal and Singapore, but I also enjoy Spa, Mugello, Silverstone, Suzuka. In the United States I like to race at Watkins Glen.”
How do you approach a race from the physical point of view?
“I would like to have the opportunity to prepare physically, but I underwent an arthroplasty operation on one knee and now I am waiting to have the other one operated on too, so there isn’t much I can do. I am not allowed to ride a bike, jog and I can’t even go up the stairs. I would have to say that my physical exercise is just car racing, definitely very demanding, but at the same time very exciting.”
You have had a long and brilliant career: which race do you brings the best memories?
“Certainly last year’s World Finals at Mugello, where I managed to win on the final lap. It was a great thrill and also because my son Max was there to support me.”
How did your passion for car racing and for Ferrari come about?
“I would say it is a passion that came about recently. I’ve always liked cars, but I don’t come from an area where people drive Ferraris. The opportunity came at the age of forty at a Ferrari Driving School where I tried to test myself and I realized that driving on the track was not so bad. So, here I am.”