Bruni Quits Coloni Motorsport

Gianmaria Bruni has quit his GP2 drive with Coloni Motorsport, just a day before the start of the race programme for the Italian Grand Prix

Bruni Quits Coloni Motorsport

His seat is to be filled by Italian Formula 3000 driver Toni Vilander.

Bruni arrived at the circuit early today with his manager to inform team principal Paolo Coloni of his decision before leaving, and was unavailable for comment on the situation.

When asked about Bruni's resignation, Coloni stated: "Of course it was a big surprise, especially when you receive a letter to say that the driver does not wish to take part in his home race."

The last-minute notification left the team with few opportunities to find a replacement, but they have done a deal to run Italian Formula 3000 front-runner Vilander, who was attending the race weekend as a guest of close friend Kimi Raikkonen.

Coloni explained his decision to give the drive to the Finn thus: "We have an obligation to the GP2 organisers [to run two cars], and we are a serious company and obviously keep faith with our obligations, and so we asked for a substitution of the driver.

"We immediately thought about having Toni Vilander, who is one of the front runners in the Italian Formula 3000 championship.

"If you look at the incredible number of victories that took Toni to first place in the Italian Formula Three championship last year, and of course his performances this year, then there could not have been a better choice for us. I'm really proud to give him this opportunity."

The current deal between Coloni and Vilander is for this weekend only, although it is believed that there is an option to run the Finn until the end of the season if they are satisfied with his performance over the weekend.

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