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Lamborghini Super Trofeo Europe: Bonaldi and Target Lords of the Rings

5 Сентябрь 2020

The second round of the Lamborghini Super Trofeo Europe season produced action aplenty, with the overall victories split between Bonaldi Motorsport’s Dean Stoneman and Kikko Galbiati and Target Racing’s Kevin Rossel and Alberto di Folco.

The latter pairing secured their first win of the 2020 campaign in Race 2, while Stoneman edges closer to the top of the points standings – still headed by Target’s Miloš Pavlović and Raul Guzman – following a second successive triumph in Race 1.

Race 1

Continuing his fantastic form from Misano, the Pro-Am entry of Karol Basz (VS Racing) took pole position for the first 50-minute encounter and led off the line, but Stoneman quickly found a way past into the lead at Turn 1.

Basz then reclaimed the lead at the end of the lap with a late-braking manoeuvre at the chicane, before Stoneman wrestled the advantage back on the run into the first turn on the second lap.

From then on, Stoneman held a slender margin over Basz ahead of the mandatory pit-stops which coincided with a safety car intervention after the Micanek Motorsport ACCR car of Libor Dvoracek stopped on track.

The GSM Racing entry of Jonathan Cecotto and Patrick Liddy had been running strongly in third before the pit window opened but suffered a slower pit-stop and dropped two positions to fifth.

The safety car came in with 13 minutes remaining, with Galbiati immediately opening up a gap over Lewandowski. The Pole came under increasing pressure from Pavlović and the Serbian veteran did not need a second invitation when the chance to take second place came at Turn 3.

Behind, it was all action as Target Racing’s Alberto di Folco – having taken over from Danish team-mate Kevin Rossel – executed a superb overtake on an unsuspecting Liddy at Turn 1 for fifth place, with Oregon Team’s Dorian Boccolacci also making it past the American at Turn 6.

Liddy and Boccolacci then engaged in a frenetic battle for sixth, with Liddy getting back ahead of the former single seater racer at Turn 9.

Boccolacci then used his open wheel racing experience to perfect a well-executed manoeuvre around the outside of Turn 1 after selling Liddy a sumptuous dummy down the main straight.

Unbeknown to the pair, Loris Spinelli (Van der Horst Motorsport) was driving a sensational race from 16th on the grid. The Italian, who took over from Gerard van der Horst at the pit-stops overtook Liddy and Boccolacci in quick succession before also grabbing fourth place – and the Pro-Am class lead – from Lewandowski with moves at the chicane.

Spinelli then got past Di Folco for third place around the outside of Turn 1, briefly going off track and making contact with the front-left corner of Di Folco’s car. The move was deemed too forceful for the stewards and Spinelli was handed a five-second post-race penalty, dropping him to fifth and elevating Basz/Lewandowski to fourth and the Pro-Am win.

In the Am class, Massimo Mantovani proved again to be the driver to beat as he claimed his second victory of the season for Target Racing. Having trailed Giuseppe Fascicolo (Boutsen Ginion Racing), Mantovani got back ahead after the pit-stops and beat Oliver Freymuth (AKF Motorsport) to the flag.

Hans Fabri took the LB Cup honours from Martin Lechman (Konrad Motorsport), with the only other entry in the class, Kurt Wagner and Dvoracek retiring.

Dean Stoneman (Bonaldi Motorsport): “The team did an amazing job today, in the pit-stop and out on the track. I made very slight contact [with Basz] at the start but I gave the position back quickly before I passed him again. After that, we were just cruising a bit in the first stint, we still had a bit [of speed] left in the tank so we are very happy with how the race went.”

Race 2

Starting third on the grid following Friday’s second qualifying session, di Folco made a superb start to grab second from Boccolacci as the field funnelled through Turn 1 for the first time.

Pole-sitter Spinelli (Van der Horst Motorsport) led the initial stages, building a five-second advantage over di Folco before the pit-stop window opened 20 minutes into the 50-minute race.

While di Folco made progress at the start, Påverud fell back one position to fifth on the opening lap, dropping behind Pavlović.

Following a hectic opening tour, the field settled into its rhythm as Spinelli led di Folco, Boccolacci, Pavlovic and Påverud. Konrad Motorsport’s Vincent Schwartz held fifth after passing Liddy.

Påverud was the first of the leading group to make his mandatory pit-stop as the window opened, as did Liddy and VS Racing’s Andrzej Lewandowski.

Despite a 0.492s post-race time penalty for a pit-stop time infringement, Rossel – who had taken over from di Folco as the remaining three leaders waited until the last minute of the pit window – had enough of a margin to claim a first Super Trofeo victory.

Indeed, the main on track battle was for second place, with Pavlović’s team-mate Raul Guzman successfully chasing down Gilardoni. Having swapped with Boccolacci, Gilardoni could not quite match the pace of Rossel in front but held firm against the waves of pressure from Guzman behind to remain second at the flag.

It was Boccolacci and Gilardoni’s first podium in Super Trofeo, while Guzman and Pavlović scored yet more valuable points for their championship assault.

Van der Horst fell back down the order once the pit-stop cycle had ended, and the Dutchman brought the car home in eighth, behind a charging Bonaldi’s Stoneman and Galbiati.

The winners of Race 1 started from the back of the grid following a driveshaft issue in qualifying, but Galbiati made progress at the beginning of the race, jumping seven places to run 15th.

Stoneman carried on the good work and ended up an impressive seventh overall by the finish and sixth in the Pro category.

Basz again took victory in the Pro-Am class after a solid stint from Lewandowski. The Polish duo stared 10th before the quicker Basz set the timesheets alight with a typical second stint charge en route to sixth.

Target Racing’s Mantovani backed up his Race 1 class win in the Am category with another in Race 2. The Target Racing driver was also keen to mix it with those in other classes and finished a sensational 12th overall, ahead of the Pro entry of Olli Kangas (VS Racing).

Kangas ended a tricky first solo weekend in the second VS Racing Huracán with two positive finishes. The Finn suffered an accident in Friday’s practice session, causing some bruising to his right ankle. Kangas admirably drove through the pain barrier, gaining more experience in Super Trofeo.

Unfortunately, due to issues in the opening race, the Micanek Motorsport ACCR entry of Wagner and Dvoracek failed to take the start of Race 2, meaning thatv just two cars disputed the LB Cup.

Martin Lechman and Emir Keserovic claimed the class win for Konrad Motorsport ahead of Hans Fabri.

Kevin Rossel (Target Racing) said: “It was a really good, but also quite difficult race. The tyres were pretty much finished by the end, so it was a case of managing them and the gap we had to second place. We had a strategy for the start of the race, which was basically to get second at the first corner. Alberto made a really good overtake so that kind of set us up nicely for my stint.”

The championship now moves on to the next round at Barcelona on the weekend of 9th-11th October.