Force India driver Fisichella joins Ferrari
PARIS: Italian Giancarlo Fisichella has been given the green light by Force India to race for Ferrari in the five remaining Grand Prix
of the season.
In a seemingly unbridled, altruistic act in the often cut-throat world of Formula One, Force India insisted that no money had changed hands and the switch had been made in good faith for the sake of the veteran driver and the sport itself.
"I''m in seventh heaven. I still can''t believe it that the dream of my life comes true," Fisichella told ferrari.com.
Ferrari chief Stefano Domenicali added, however, that the Italian veteran would be the team''s reserve driver in 2010.
Force India team boss Vijay Mallya said that he would not have stood in the way of the Italian taking a race seat with Ferrari.
"For any Italian driver, a Ferrari race seat is a long-held dream and for Giancarlo it was no exception," Mallya said.
"Furthermore the agreement will secure Giancarlo''s long-term future with Ferrari and it would be incorrect to jeopardise this, particularly when Giancarlo has made such a vital contribution to Force India."
Mallya said there had been no financial settlement with Ferrari over the switch of Fisichella, who caused a minor sensation when running Ferrari''s Kimi Raikkonen close in Sunday''s Belgian Grand Prix for Force India''s first ever championship points.
"This agreement has been made in good faith and for the good of Giancarlo and the sport in general," Mallya insisted.
"A competitive Italian driver in a Ferrari for Monza is a positive story for Formula One, which can only help raise the sport''s profile in these difficult times."
Fisichella would now be expected to make his Ferrari debut at the next Formula One Grand Prix at the Italian circuit of Monza on September 13, most likely taking over from Ferrari test driver Luca Badoer, who has stood in for the injured Felipe Massa at the last two Grands Prix.
Force India have yet to confirm who will replace Fisichella alongside Adrian Sutil.
Fisichella praised the Force India team for allowing him to realise a dream.