Bia Figueiredo reunites with Legge and Nielsen for 12H of Sebring
Bia Figueiredo returns to racing after giving birth and will join the all-female team at Hardpoint EBM, as she reunites with Legge and Nielsen for the upcoming 12H of Sebring.
As announced earlier this week, double-IMSA champion Christina Nielsen and vice-champion Katherine Legge teamed up in another all-female team for the remainder of the WeatherTech IMSA sportscar championship 2021 season. The pair had competed alongside at the opening round - the 24 Hours of Daytona - and secured a full season deal thanks to the support of Richard Mille.
For the upcoming round, Brazilian racer Bia Figueiredo will make her return to motor racing after a year-hiatus and will join the crew of the #88 Team Hardpoint EBM for the 12 hours of Sebring. The race, to be contested on March 17-19. thus sees the 2019 all female line-up reunited, as Legge, Nielsen and Figueiredo entered the full IMSA season for Heinricher Racing. They previously finished eighth at Sebring.
Figueiredo, a driver with extensive experience in both single seaters and sportscars, made 29 Indycar starts before movig back to her native Brazil, where she competed in StockCar, Brazilian's premier touring car championship.
She returns behind the wheel of a racecar after giving birth to her first child in 2020.
“I can’t express how excited I am to be back to race in IMSA with Katherine and Christina driving for Team Hardpoint EBM. My birthday is March 18, so being back in IMSA is the best gift for me." - commented Bia.
"My 2019 experience in the series were one of the best of my career. I really enjoyed it. Sebring is a challenging track with the bumps but is really fun to drive. I can’t wait to drive the Richard Mille Porsche 911 GT3 R on this track.”
Last week, Figueiredo re-activated her social media profiles after several months, after an investigation had involved the family of the driver's husband in Brazil, in relation to the Rio de Janeiro's health system. She is not part of the investigation and was never questioned by authorities.
"Last year I had a very bad personal incident, my life turned upside down", she said in a video she released on her Instagram page. "It was very hard for me to get to know about the investigation through the press, without being asked about anything."
Figueiredo said she received life threats and proceded to close her social media to protect her newborn baby. With her son now turning six months, she is now ready to hit the track again.
Bia had the chance to test the Porsche 911 GT3 car earlier this week and has been welcomed by her teammates.
"To also have Bia join us for this race is outstanding for our team, especially during Women’s History Month." - added Katherine Legge.
"Sebring is one of those races that is a bucket list race and one that you’re desperate to win. I’m really grateful that we’ve been given that opportunity. I love the 12 Hour, it’s one of those races that has eluded me and I hope we can rectify that this weekend."
“I’m very much looking forward to being back at Sebring." - added Nielsen.
"I have good memories there and I’m excited to be back. It seems like every year the saying ‘you’ve got to respect the bumps’ becomes even more true. It’s always good to be back in a unique place that is like nothing else and is an iconic American track. I’m looking forward to having Bia join us to push for the result we’re capable of.”