Brazilian ace Raphael “Rafa” Matos joins Risi Competizione Ferrari for the American Le Mans Series 2011 season finale at Petit Le Mans. Matos joins countryman Jaime Melo and Toni Vilander in the No. 062 Risi Ferrari F458 Italia for the endurance classic.
Although Matos has no prior ALMS GT class experience, he has GT experience from Grand-Am and has prior ALMS starts in prototypes.
“First of all, I want to say I'm extremely honored to be part of the Risi Competizione team for Petit Le Mans,” Matos said. “I've followed them for a long time, since I was first involved with the ALMS in 2006, so I knew Risi was totally committed to Ferrari which was a big name and part of my childhood because my father was a huge fan of Ferrari. I was very happy to receive the call from Giuseppe Risi, and when the opportunity came up to drive I never hesitated.”
Matos raced the first four rounds of the 2011 IndyCar season for AFS Racing and posted the team's best result of the season in seventh place at St. Petersburg. He is expected to handle the team's testing early in the week at Road Atlanta as Melo and Vilander will be in Estoril, Portugal, for the Le Mans Series season finale in an AF Corse-prepared Ferrari F458.