Massimiliano "Max" Papis (born October 3, 1969) is an Italian professional stock car racing driver who has competed in several top-level motorsports events such as Le Mans 24 Hours, Formula One and Champ Car. He has three Champ Car victories. He is the son-in-law of Emerson Fittipaldi. His sons' godfather is fellow Italian Alex Zanardi. Papis also currently drives in the NASCAR Whelen Euroseries.
Produced exclusively for the United States, the Alex Zanardi Edition NSX was introduced in 1999 to commemorate Alex Zanardi's two back-to-back CART Champ Car championship wins for Honda / Acura in 1997 and 1998. Only fifty-one examples were built, and they were available only in New Formula Red to reflect the color of the Champ Car Zanardi drove for Chip Ganassi Racing.
Papis was born on October 3, 1969 in Como, Italy. He was raised in Italy and got an interest in car racing at a young age, winning several go-kart races and several rounds for racing clubs in Italy.
He is married to Tatiana Papis, daughter of the racing driver Emerson Fittipaldi, and has two kids Marco and Matteo Papis.
After a spell as the Lotus team's test driver in 1994, Papis replaced Gianni Morbidelli in the Footwork team for seven races in the middle of the 1995 Formula One season, as he brought valuable sponsorship to the cash-strapped outfit.
Despite being a race-winner in Formula 3000, he often struggled with the unfamiliar car, and was occasionally outpaced by his much-maligned team-mate, Taki Inoue. He also proved to be an unlucky driver, suffering a spectacular puncture and suspension failure on his début race at Silverstone due to clipping the pit lane wall after a tire change, being left on the grid at Hockenheim due to a transmission failure, and spinning on dust and oil kicked up by David Coulthard at the Ascari Chicane on the first lap of the Italian GP, causing a pile-up and a restart.
However, he only missed out on a point in the restarted race when he was overtaken by Jean-Christophe Boullion's Sauber on the last lap.
When Morbidelli returned, Papis was out of a drive and headed to America for 1996.