Nicola Larini says he is keen to put the 2008 season behind him as Chevrolet brings in a new era with the opening rounds of the new World Touring Car Championship campaign.
Curitiba next weekend will mark the first race for the all-new Cruze model which replaces the Lacetti that has been campaigned by the Chevrolet squad since its move into the WTCC back in 2005
Larini was the only one of the Chevrolet drivers not to win in 2008 as he finished eleventh in the standings and the Italian said he was excited about the prospect of hitting the track in the new car as he looks to secure his long-awaiting break-through win.
“We are all anxious and excited to see how the new Cruze performs in real race conditions,” he said. “When I see how much good work the team has done during the last months in researching and developing the new car, I am really confident that we will be competitive, despite the very strong competition.
“I hope we can have a good start of the season in South America and build upon that. For me, the objective is to start on the right foot and put behind as quickly as possible my disappointing season of last year.”
Chevrolet Europe motorsport manager Eric Neve admitted that Brazil will be the 'moment everyone has waited for' within the team as the car hits the track at the same time as it is being prepared for road use back in Europe.
“The moment everybody has been waiting for has finally arrived!” he said. “The team has really done everything possible to make the new Cruze competitive since its debut, but a new car is always something unknown. Interestingly enough, the race version of the new Cruze is making its debut at the same time the road car is reaching the markets, by being exhibited at the Geneva Motor Show and being tested by the media in Santander, in Northern Spain. No doubt this is going a week of exams for the new Cruze!”