Rafael Sperafico (April 22, 1981 – December 9, 2007) was a Brazilian racing driver. He was the cousin of fellow racing drivers Ricardo and Rodrigo, and also related to Alexandre. He was born in Toledo, Paraná.
Sperafico moved to Europe for 2003 to compete in the Euro Formula 3000 series, where he finished 15th in the championship with two points. He thus followed in the footsteps of his relatives Ricardo, Rodrigo and Alexandre, who had all previously competed in the FIA International version of the series.
Renault Clio Cup
In 2006, Sperafico took part in the Renault Super Clio Cup Brazil, finishing fourth in the championship.
On December 9, 2007, Sperafico was driving in a Stock Car Light race at the Autódromo José Carlos Pace, supporting the season finale of the main Stock Car Brasil championship in which his older cousins Ricardo and Rodrigo were both competing. On lap six of the race, Sperafico lost control of his car on the fast left-hand corner immediately before the start-finish straight (Subida dos Boxes) and speared into the retaining wall on the right-hand side of the circuit at high speed. The force of the impact saw the damaged car rebound onto the racing line, where it was t-boned by Renato Russo, triggering a pile-up involving several other drivers. The race was stopped and the circuit's medical personnel arrived on the scene quickly, but Sperafico died at the scene from massive head injuries. Russo also suffered severe head injuries and was taken to hospital, where he was in a serious but stable condition. Several other drivers were treated for minor injuries. Russo was released from hospital on December 17.
On the same day, Sperafico's cousin, Rodrigo, became runner-up of the 2007 Stock Car Brasil Championship. Gustavo Sondermann, Rafael Sperafico's team-mate at the time, was killed four years later in an almost identical crash at the same corner.
- "Rafael Sperafico killed at Interlagos". grandprix.com. 2007-12-10. Retrieved 2007-12-10.
- "Rafael Sperafico dies in Brazilian race". motorsport.com. 2007-12-09. Retrieved 2007-12-10.
- "Renato Russo is released from hospital". stockcar2007.com.br. 2007-12-17. Retrieved 2008-02-18.
- Honorio, Rafael (2011-04-03). "Após acidente, Gustavo Sondermann tem morte cerebral confirmada". globoesporte.globo.com (in Portuguese) (Organizações Globo). Retrieved 2011-04-04.
- Rafael Sperafico career summary at DriverDB.com Retrieved on December 10, 2007.