Ferrari has used the GTO moniker on just two occasions in the past, once on the original 250 GTO of 1962, and then again in 1984 with the so-called 288 GTO.
In both cases the O stood for 'Omologata' – because both cars were produced for homologation purposes to allow Ferrari to go racing.
The 250 became a well-known sports racing car in the 1960s while the 288 was originally intended as a precursor to a Group B racing series that never actually happened; its prime purpose was still, however, to provide the platform for a proper competition car.
The 599 GTO has no such purpose. When I spoke with Ferrari’s amiable boss Amedeo Felisa over lunch on the GTO’s launch last week (as you do), I asked him if Ferrari had any intention of going racing with the 599, and, if so, whether a return to sports car racing might be under consideration.
On both counts the answer was an emphatic “no.”
Ferrari is happy with its involvement at GT2 level in sports car racing, said Felisa, but has “absolutely no intention” to go any higher than that – not with the 599 or any other car in the near future.