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Mission Tokyo 2020: Alessandro Zanardi takes to the Fuji track with his handcycle.

The ‘SUPER GT x DTM Dream Race’ event has begun with the first test sessions being held at the ‘Fuji International Speedway’ (JPN). Before taking to the track in his #4 ZF BMW M4 DTM, Alessandro Zanardi (ITA) had already completed some laps around the circuit with his handcycle. ‘Fuji International Speedway’ will be the venue for the para-cycling competitions of the 2020 Tokyo Paralympic Games (JPN). Zanardi has a good chance of qualifying for the games.

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Fuji International Speedway. The ‘SUPER GT x DTM Dream Race’ event has begun with the first test sessions being held at the ‘Fuji International Speedway’ (JPN). Before taking to the track in his #4 ZF BMW M4 DTM, Alessandro Zanardi (ITA) had already completed some laps around the circuit with his handcycle. ‘Fuji International Speedway’ will be the venue for the para-cycling competitions of the 2020 Tokyo Paralympic Games (JPN). Zanardi has a good chance of qualifying for the games.
 
At the 2012 games in London (GBR) and 2016 in Rio de Janeiro (BRA), Zanardi won a total of four Paralympic gold medals and he is 12-time para-cycling world champion. Participation in the Tokyo games is his big target for 2020. Before the Dream Race event started, Zanardi had the opportunity to experience the circuit with his handcycle and gather first information of what to expect at a possible start at the ‘Fuji International Speedway’.
 
“Now I have a very good idea of what I have to prepare for,” said Zanardi. “I’ll bring home important information that will help me to prepare both technically speaking, because I am planning to develop a new bicycle, and also physically speaking. Each track has its own requirements and you can adapt your training procedure to the different courses you are going to race on. It is going to be a very interesting event. The track is beautiful but really hard. You never have a flat section, you are always either climbing or descending and I think it will also take some skill as far as approaching the turns because there are many areas where you have to brake hard and to steer in in the right moment with the right line. So I hope that my driving skill will help me a bit in those sections but there is a lot of work to do because this scenario is quite different to the ones on which we have competed up to this point. It is exciting and I am very grateful to BMW for offering me this opportunity, for sure mainly for the wonderful BMW M4 DTM I am going to be driving over the weekend, but also for this reason.”
 
Now, Zanardi is fully focused on his appearance in the ZF BMW M4 DTM. On Friday, the free practice sessions for the Dream Race will be held, while for each Saturday and Sunday, one qualifying and one race are scheduled. Zanardi forms the BMW M Motorsport ‘Dream Team’ with Marco Wittmann (GER) and Kamui Kobayashi (JPN).

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