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The Bonaldi Motorsport duo take seventh victory of the year to wrap up the title in style
Bonaldi Motorsport’s Max Weering and Loris Spinelli clinched the 2022 Lamborghini Super Trofeo Europe championship title with their seventh victory of the year in a safety car affected opening race at Barcelona. The #61 Lamborghini Huracán Super Trofeo EVO2 was in command from pole position and dominated throughout, despite finishing second on-the-road behind the penalised Amaury Bonduel.
Bonduel was handed a 30-second converted drivethrough penalty for serving his mandatory pit-stop under the minimum allotted time, which allowed Weering/Spinelli to take the victory with the Target Racing crew of Milan Teekens and Marzio Moretti finishing second. Completing the podium on their Super Trofeo debut was the Lamborghini by Stuttgart combination of Daniel Keilwitz and Lennart Marioneck.
Having topped morning qualifying by half a second, Spinelli was the driver to beat at the start, and the polesitter got a good jump from the rolling start to lead into the first corner. Meanwhile the sister #32 Bonaldi Motorsport Pro-Am entry of Martin Kodrić leapfrogged past Teekens to take second place as the field negotiated turn one.
Although the first few corners passed without incident, Cedric Leimer (Autovitesse) spun by himself at turn four, while further around the lap, the GT3 Poland Am entry of Adrian Lewandowski suffered a puncture and spun at turn 10. Unable to get the car running again, Lewandowski was out of the race and the safety car was deployed.
Following two laps of neutralisation, Spinelli led from the restart and built a small margin of just over two seconds from Kodrić. It grew to nearly five seconds by the end of the stint, leaving Weering a handy advantage after the mandatory pit-stop. Behind, the battle intensified for the final step on the podium, as Teekens came under pressure from the Pro-Am Oregon Team car of Lewis Williamson.
The order remained largely stable until the pit window, with Keilwitz returning to the fifth position he initially lost on the opening lap to VS Racing’s Stéphane Tribaudini. The experienced German – won who the ADAC GT Masters championship in 2013 and the Pro-Am class of the Spa 24 Hours in 2018 – handed over to team-mate Marioneck at the end of the window.
Indeed, the entire top seven cars came into the pits at the same time at the end of the 10-minute window to make their stops, but this phase proved costly for Bonduel, who served a mere 1m08s in the pits, well short of the minimum 1m29s for a solo driver. He emerged in the overall lead of the race but was penalised 30-seconds post-race, dropping him to 17th in the final standings.
Weering managed a late safety car restart – following a lengthy full course yellow period after Filippo Berto beached his Oregon Team car at turn four, with the #2 Boutsen Racing car of Pierre Feligioni and Elie Dubelly crashing into the back of Holger Harmsen at turn five under safety car conditions – to beat Moretti and Marioneck to the line. Standing out further back was the AKF Motorsport car of Sebastian Freymuth – son of Am driver Oliver Freymuth – who finished a superb seventh overall and fifth in Pro.
Race winner Max Weering (#61 Bonaldi Motorsport) said: “I am super happy to win the championship, especially after coming so close to it last year, before I got a puncture in the final round. This means a lot to me and the team because we have worked so hard all year. Me and Loris have been quite lucky this year in that we haven’t had any troubles or issues, the car has been perfect, all season. They make the car, and we only have to drive it! At the final restart, I was trying to be a bit clever and let Bonduel drive away so that I could get clean air, and I think that was why Moretti behind could not get so close to me. Now, the pressure is off, and we look forward to the final races and the Finals in Portimão.”
Team-mate Loris Spinelli (#61 Bonaldi Motorsport) added: “All season we have had really good pace and we were able to bring home the championship today, so I am very happy with that. Max did a great job, even though it was a bit bad luck for the other guy [Bonduel], but I had a good stint, and we took the win. Now, our focus is on the Finals in Portimão, where we want to really finish the year off in the perfect way.”
The Pro-Am class again provided plenty of action, with the race result only decided on the final lap, as Micanek Motorsport’s Bromek Formanek pulled off a superb overtake on Emanuel Colombini at turn four.
Kodrić and Mur held the lead in the opening stages, running second overall with the Oregon Team car of Williamson and Massimo Ciglia close behind in fourth – second in class. Despite struggling with the handling of the #27 car, Williamson looked the more dangerous during his stint, but the Scottish driver was unable to make a move on Teekens in front.
Both Mur and Ciglia slipped back after the pit-stops; Ciglia lost 10 seconds at the changeover and dropped two places to fourth in class, elevating Colombini to second place. After the final restart, Colombini caught and passed Mur for the lead, as the Bonaldi Motorsport car fell down the order.
Moving up the field was Formanek who, after taking over from experienced hand Karol Basz at the pit-stops in ninth position overall, overtook Mur for second before closing the gap to Colombini on the final lap. Formanek made the most of Colombini getting stuck in traffic to dive down the inside of turn four, seizing the lead. Colombini was then spun around by the Pro entry of Rodrigo Testa de Sousa at turn 10, causing mayhem and promoting the debutant team Brutal Fish Racing – with Edoardo Liberati and newcomer Martin Ryba – to second. Brendon Leitch and Gerhard Watzinger escaped the final-lap drama to take third place for Leipert Motorsport.
VS Racing’s Andrzej Lewandowski moved back into the lead of the Am standings with victory from pole position, beating Yury Wagner (Leipert Motorsport). Lewandowski held onto the lead at the start and pulled away from Wagner, who lost valuable time with a brief trip through the gravel at turn four while fighting with Pietro Perolini.
That moved Stéphan Guerin up to second, with Leipert Motorsport’s Gabriel Rindone third, but Rindone dropped down to third as Wagner’s team-mate Louis Wagner recovered ground in the second stint. Guerin dropped to fourth by the end, with Claude-Yves Gosselin and Marc Rostan completing the top five. As for Feligioni and Elie Dubelly, the #2 car received a 30-second penalty for their part in the safety car incident with Harmsen.
In the Lamborghini Cup, François Grimm bounced back from a double non-score at Spa to claim his first class win of the season. The Swiss driver got the better of polesitter Gerard van der Horst at the start with Daniel Waszczinski third. Waszczinski then moved up to second after the pit-stops but lost out to the recovering van der Horst before the end. Imperiale Racing’s Hans Fabri was fourth, a lap down.
Race two will take place tomorrow at 10:30 and will be livestreamed on the Lamborghini Squadra Corse Facebook page and YouTube channel.
Lamborghini Super Trofeo Europe – 2022 Calendar
Round 1: Imola (Italy), 1-3 April
Round 2: Le Castellet (France), 3-5 June
Round 3: Misano (Italy), 1-3 July
Round 4: Spa-Francorchamps (Belgium) 29-30 July
Round 5: Barcelona (Spain) 30 September-2 October
Round 6: Portimão (Portugal), 3-4 November
Finals: Portimão (Portugal), 5-6 November