Italian GT Championship – Monza – Race 1
Where did we leave off yesterday (Saturday evening)? “It could
be anything sun, rain, wind, snow…” Well we had just
about everything. It could be anyone’s victory? Yes we had
it (almost). It could be a last lap drama as last year? Yes we had
it! It could be better? Well it’s difficult!
Race 1, originally
scheduled for 12.05…started at 13.10 At first the cars went
out on slicks, then on the grid a steady shower arrived, but in
the meantime the formation lap was almost completed, so a decision
All the cars
headed to the pits and changed from slicks to wets. You can guess
what happened next: 15 minutes later the rain eased and the sun
made its first appearance. So what next? All the cars changed to
slicks again and went out (finally) for the race.
on a slippery, cold, drying track like Monza? Sounds beautiful for
the spectators…and some drivers. At the start Riccitelli saw
off all the big GTs in front of him and flew away at about two and
a half seconds per lap. Behind the lightning-quick Luca, the Viper
of Cioci and the 550 of Casè passed the Lister Storm - while
all of them were passed by another demon, Chiesa in his 360 GTC.
In the meantime
Perazzini (below), who had started last, was gradually grabbing
positions in his Viper. Lap after lap the track was drying rapidly,
thanks to a strong sun and little wind, and Riccitelli and Chiesa
were passed by Casè, Lancellotti, who had re-passed Cioci,
and the brand new 2004 Viper driven by Spinelli.
After the pit-stops,
Guagliardo (550) was in front of Zonca (Lister), Matteuzzi (Viper)
and Sabatini (Viper). Behind in the N-GT class Quester (996) was
just in front of Kessel (360) and a good battle developed between
Pigoli (996) and Francescon (360), with the Porsche man beating
the Ferrari driver on the last lap.
In the concluding
part of the race we had some more dramas… Quester spun in
the first chicane and Kessel said “thanks very much”
and went on to win the N-GT class.
Among the big
boys class, Zonca’s Lister was just behind Guagliardo’s
550 Ferrari, never more than one or two seconds distant.…
and on the penultimate lap, Guagliardo, at the exit of the Ascari,
slowed dramatically. No fuel! It’s incredible, even with over
five laps in the rainy conditions and with a race shortened by five
minutes (from the planned one hour) the 550 couldn’t make
the finish. Zonca lifted off the gas by… 20 seconds in one
lap, just to make sure he didn’t have to complete another
long lap of Monza (the Lister was also very marginal on fuel –
but he seemed to cross the line before 55 minutes was up).
the (distant) runner-up spot, after the exit of the 550, Matteuzzi
completed a huge comeback from last spot, and a very good one after
the shunt on Saturday. He pipped the black Viper of Sabatini / Spinelli
by only a few tenths!
In the GT3 class victory
went to the only Porsche present, in front of both Maserati Lights,
both sounding wonderful!
Race 2 report later today.
1. Lancellotti-Zonca Lister 28 laps in 54’56.382 GT
2. Matteuzzi-Perezzini Viper at 51.592 GT
3. Spinelli-Sabatini Viper at 52.351 GT
4. Chiesa-Kessel 360 GTC at 1’15.692 N-GT
5. Riccitelli-Quester 996 RSR at 1’27.575 N-GT
6. Baso-Cioci Viper at 1’29.357 GT
7. Pigoli-Galimberti 996 RSR at 1’30.196 N-GT
8. Francescon-Berton 360 GTC at 1’31.513 N-GT
9. Drudi-Monti 360 Modena at 1’44.916 N-GT
10. Valli-Deverikos 996 RS at 2’17.668 N-GT
13. Sada-Sala 996 GT3 cup 2 laps GT3
14. Strano-Piacentini Maserati Light 2 laps GT3
15. Giudici-Raimondi Maserati Light 2 laps GT3