“I dedicated my life to high performance cars and racing”
“Le Mans is a true test of men, machine and team.”
Some people just steal the air when they enter the room. They are so charismatic that no matter what you’re forced to recognize their power over events, over history. This is the case of Giuseppe Risi, Team Principal of the award-winning Ferrari GT team Risi Competizione. The story of Mr. Risi begins in Sicily, evolves in America and revolves around that Holy Grail called Motorsport.
After practicing in ETCC and F1 championships he meets Mr. Enzo Ferrari in 1972 who asks him to become the very first official Ferrari dealer in America, in Houston. In late 1970s the call for racing becomes too strong to deny. He collaborates to the visionary prototype “GRID” project with former Lotus-man Ian Dawson to land directly on the toughest competition of all times: the 24h of Le Mans that BTW he won 3 times with his Ferrari GT independent team Risi Competizione. The palmares of the team is all but short comprehending victories at the 24h of Daytona, Petit Le Mans and others.
The fascination of Mr. Risi for endurance races fits his character because he works, leads and wins relentlessly. The secret is never losing the grip on the final goal. A lot can happen in a 24-hours race: excitement, happiness, stress, fatigue, stasis, but he never lets any of these emotions affect his judgement. A race is finished when it’s finished.
To Mr. Risi teamwork and peace of mind in car preparation are fundamental to build a winning machine. The relationship with Pakelo Lubricants dates back to the late 1990s when a gearbox oil was tested to improve temperature stability during endurance races, where gearbox get particularly solicited. Risi Competizione has been using Pakelo gearbox oil ever since.
“With Pakelo it was just a marriage made in heaven for us and we never looked back.”
Since that very first approach the team engaged in countless challenges, but if you ask Mr. Risi what his ultimate goal is the answer comes straightforward: winning the 24 hours of Le Mans again. Although he won so much at the Circuit of La Sarthe Mr. Risi still believes there’s a lot to fight and a lot to conquer there.
“The victory is a temporary relief. What you realize is that all that you’ve done is create a monster for the next victory.”