Pietro Fittipaldi was handed his Formula 1 debut in unexpected circumstances at the Sakhir Grand Prix. The Haas simulator driver was called up as a substitute for Romain Grosjean who suffered burns to his hands in an explosive crash at the previous race.Emerson Fittipaldi, Pietro initially competed in Britain where he won the Formula Renault championship with MGR in 2014.
His step up to Formula 3 the following year was less successful. He mustered just seven points finishes from 33 starts in the highly competitive European championship. However he bagged another championship trophy during the off-season in the Indian MRF championship and moved up a category with Fortec for 2016, racing in Formula V8 3.5.
While team mate Louis Deletraz fought Tom Dillmann for the title, Fittipaldi never figured in contention for wins. However he made steady progress in the substantially quicker cars and reached the podium for the first time at the season finale.
That served as a springboard for a title bid in what proved the final year of the category, against a depleted field featuring just nine regular drivers. He switched teams to Lotus, thereby recreating the evocative combination of his famous surname with a black-and-gold livery.
Fittipaldi took a pair of wins in the season-opening round at Silverstone. However he faced season-long competition from team mate Rene Binder and Fortec’s Alfonso Celis and Matevos Isaakyan, who each took turns leading the championship.
Back-to-back wins at Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez put Fittipaldi back on top, but a crash during the second race at the Circuit of the Americas kept Isaakyan in the championship fight heading into the final double-header. When a transmission fault prevented Isaakyan from taking the start in Bahrain, the path was cleared for Fittipaldi to clinch the title with a second place finish.
A joint campaign in IndyCar and the World Endurance Championship in 2018 was disrupted when he broke his leg in a crash while practicing for the Six Hours of Spa. Later in the year Haas announced him as their test driver. After returning from injury Fittipaldi continued to race alongside his testing activities, spending the 2019 season with Audi in the DTM, finishing 15th.
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