Ex-Formula 1 driver Antonio Pizzonia will compete for Brazilian football club Corinthians in the new Superleague Formula, it was announced this week.
The former Jaguar and Williams F1 man, who is currently competing in the Brazilian Stock Car Championship, was revealed as the club's new star in Parque Sao Jorge, the club's headquarters, in Sao Paulo, Brazil.
The 27-year-old is now looking forward to climbing back aboard a single-seater and making his debut at the Nurburgring.
"I am extremely happy to drive for Corinthians in Superleague Formula and really looking forward to my first race at the Nurburgring," Pizzonia said. "I think the format and the whole concept for the championship is excellent and I am very confident we can be very competitive.
"I have raced at the Nurburgring before and can't wait to try the Corinthians car there. I was really surprised at the reaction from the fans, it really has been amazing. I will certainly have a lot of supporters following my every lap."
Corinthians vice-president of marketing, Luís Paulo Rosemberg has welcomed Pizzonia as the new member of the 'Corinthians family', remarking that the well-known supporters group named 'Fiel' is growing beyond football.
"Superleague Formula can be a great business opportunity for Corinthians – the club doesn't invest in motorsports, but being on track with our image and fans, we can obtain great incomes with sponsorship and licensed products," he added.
While the 2008 Superleague Formula championship remains a European-based championship meanwhile, the series is looking at expansion into Brazil in 2009.
The Superleague Formula director responsible for the Brazilian market, Gustavo Erich Wolf, said at the Pizzonia press conference this week that he is working towards the inclusion of Brazil in the 2009 calendar.
The circuits that are being considered as candidates, include Interlagos, Jacarepaguá, Velopark, Curitiba and Brasília.
"In this first season, Superleague Formula is only going to happen only in Europe, but for the next year we are aiming for nine weekends," Wolf said.
"There is a strong desire to come to Brazil. We are working hard with sponsors, TV networks and also with the circuit's directors to make this dream come true next season."