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De Villota signs for Atletico Madrid

Maria de VillotaMaria de Villota has signed to race for Atletico Madrid in the Superleague Formula.

The 30-year-old Spaniard, who is the daughter of former grand prix driver Emilio de Villota, has previously raced in World Touring Cars, Spanish Formula 3 and Formula Palmer Audi.

De Villota has replaced former GP2 and A1GP racer Ho-Pin Tung at Atletico and will make her series debut in the next round at Estoril on September 5-6. She will also contest the final two rounds of the year at Monza and Jarama.

"I tested the car last November and it is the most powerful I have ever driven," said de Villota. "It is fantastic to drive, with a huge amount of horsepower. The V12 engine and its overall look and feel make it very reminiscent of an F1 car. I can't wait for next month so I can race it.

"This is the biggest opportunity of my career so far. I am from Madrid so it is a huge honour for me to be able to represent Atletico in Superleague Formula.

"We have two very successful football clubs here in Madrid but I have always been a supporter of Atletico. They are a club with a huge amount of character and the fans are so loyal and passionate. They always support their team through the good times and the bad."

De Villota is particularly looking forward to Jarama season finale, which will be her and Atletico's home race.

"Jarama is my home track, I live very close by," she added. "I can't wait to race there as I think the Atletico fans will come out and support their team and the race will be a real highlight for me. Spanish people are very passionate about football and motorsport so it should be a fantastic weekend."

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