"You think you have a limit, and then you go for this limit. Something happens. And suddenly you can go a little further, with the power of your mind, your determination, with your instinct and also with your experience. You can fly very high. "The words of Ayrton Senna, a driver who was able to win a place not only among the greats of racing but also in the heart of countless motor sport fans. Because on every lap he would try to do better than the one before, to earn a tenth of a second, cut across a racing line or put off overtaking until later.
It is passion, commitment and determination which motor racing greater and cause the public to fall in love with the sport. These are all qualities that Pirelli strives to put into every single tyre it produces and constructors like Ferrari instil into every racing car they make. From the single seaters of Formula 1 to the grand touring cars of the Ferrari Challenge.
This single-marque competition from the Maranello Company began in 1993: since then, six GT road cars have been turned into six corresponding racing versions, fitted with six specially made tyre models. All from Pirelli. These cars are known as the "Challenges": from the first, the 348 Challenge, to the current 488 Challenge.
More than 1,000 drivers have got behind the wheel of these cars over the last 26 years. Most of them have been gentlemen drivers – men and women with a life outside of competitions, who at the weekend put on a helmet and overalls and climb into the cabin of a Challenge car. All of them are big fans of driving, sports cars and competition. Thanks to these drivers, Pirelli – the exclusive supplier for the Ferrari Challenge – has had the opportunity to study new ideas and solutions in typical track conditions, as people drive to the limit. But the Ferrari drivers and test drivers have also helped us to explore this field, pushing the Challenge cars into that murky area which is typical in their line of work: pushing beyond all limits while still maintaining control. “On the limit. Or just over” to use the words of Marc Gené, at the wheel of the Ferrari 488 Challenge, during the Finali Mondiali Ferrari at Monza. If you want to be the best, then you have to go in search of your limits in order to push past them. Only then can you be capable of making the difference, striving to maintain your balance on that thin line where you still have control and in that moment when you ask everything from your car and use every single millimetre of the tyre.