Samantha Cristoforetti joins crewmates Skaplerov and Virts, on a visit to Ferrari
Maranello, 8 October 2015 – The three astronauts involved in the Futura Mission, Samantha Cristoforetti, Anton Skaplerov and Terry Virts, touched down at Maranello today. “Astrosamantha”, as she is now better known in Italy, was the first Italian women in space. When she finished a 200-day stint aboard the Soyuz space station on June 15 last, Captain Cristoforett also set a new duration record for a single mission for ESA astronauts, Italian astronauts and all female astronauts. She was accompanied on her visit to Ferrari by her fellow crewmates from the mission, Russian astronaut Anton Skaplerov and American astronaut Terry Virts, as well as representatives of the Italian Air Force, the Italian Space Agency and the European Space Agency.
The three astronauts, who also met with Ferrari chairman Sergio Marchionne and FCA chairman John Elkann, first toured the Classiche Department, the 12-cylinder assembly line and the New Mechanical Machining Department. They then went to the Fiorano track where the Ferrari test-driver Dario Benuzzi gave them a display of the LaFerrari’s blistering performance.
Although very familiar with aerospace engineering at its finest, Commander Cristoforetti and her colleagues found watching this display of Ferrari excellence in person an unforgettable experience. Terry Virts probably said it best in a single word: “Wow!”.