Scores pretty well for a rookie, too.
Michael Fassbender last weekend stripped out his crimson Magneto costume from the latest trilogy of X-Men movies and slipped into a Rosso Corsa and white jumpsuit for a race at the U.S. Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca in the Ferrari Challenge series.
“From a very early age I idolised Ferrari and its champion, Michael Schumacher, in particular, so now racing in the Ferrari Challenge brings that dream full circle,” the actor said in Ferrari's announcement of his participation in the race.
Ferrari has now released provisional results for the two races at Laguna Seca over the weekend. Fassbender started in 17th place out of 25 cars, and he had a qualifying time of 1:31.691, versus 1:27.753 from Marc Muzzo in first. Fassbender finished 11th in his class and 17th overall. In the second race, he managed 6th in class and 14th overall. Pretty decent stuff for a Ferrari rookie.
Fassbender completed Ferrari’s Corso Pilota driver training program last year. He’ll now compete in the North American Ferrari Challenge series. The next round will be in Montreal at Circuit Gilles Villeneuve from June 9 through 11.
Some classes in the North American Ferrari Challenge are now using the 488 Challenge race car. Based on the road-going model, it uses a biturbo 3.9-litre V8 with 661 horsepower. There’s still a separate class for competing in the the older 458 Challenge Evo, too.
Fassbender joins a cadre of Hollywood stars who enjoy being on the track when they aren't in front of the camera. Paul Newman and Steve McQueen remain famous for their racing exploits. These days, Patrick Dempsey is nearly as well known as a driver as he is as an actor. Even Patrick Stewart, captain of the Starship Enterprise, likes to lap a circuit as a hobby, too: see him in action at the Silverstone Classic this summer.