Sunday, October 12, 2014

Italian GT: Runner-up spot grabbed in nail-biting Imola race keeps Marco Mapelli, Thomas Schöffler atop the points standings

Audi Sport Italia Press Release

GT title to go to the wire at Monza:  runner-up spot grabbed in nail-biting Imola race keeps Marco Mapelli, Thomas Schöffler atop the points standings

•  Series lead now shared with Imola race two winners Giammaria-Case
•  Rough driving spoils Emanuele Zonzini, Dindo Capello day at turn one

Imola, Italy – As going got tough in the Italian GT the No. 6 Audi duo proved to be a nearly perfect match: yesterday, at the circuit named after Enzo and Dino Ferrari, it was up to Singen, Germany's Thomas Schoeffler to put his mark on the third place finish in a race claimed by Alessandro Balzan, Nicola Benucci's Ferrari. Today it was Marco Mapelli's turn to put in an inspired drive to snatch the second place -- behind Raffaele Gianmaria and Lorenzo Case's Ferrari --. The Monza-based driver had to dodge a spate of punches during a bout with Francisco Mora's AMG Mercedes. The Portoguese's third place was then deleted by the stewards, but Mapelli, with the title on the line and the archrival Ferrari leading, simply couldn't afford not to take risks. And he proved his mettle moving by the AMG Mercedes at Tamburello corner with two laps to go. The runnerup spot in round 12 means that Mapelli, Schoeffler keep the lead in the standings they had re-claimed on Saturday, albeit level on points with Sunday winners. The four drivers will go to the wire in a fortnight at ultra-quick Monza and they will be level also as far as time handicap is concerned for round 13 mandatory pit-stop, whilst Saturday winner Nicola Benucci keeps himself a dim chance to leapfrog the foursome.

Imola wasn't as friendly with their team mate Emanuele Zonzini: the San Marino young gun was pushed into the runoff area at turn one on the opening lap and could not resume the race until he had a 3-lap gap. A recovery impossible to match even for his mentor Dindo Capello, who had to make do with a ninth place that was way too little, especially for a pissed off Zonzini.

Race two:
1. Giammaria-Case' (Ferrari)
28 laps, 49:55.011
3. Pier Guidi-Lucchini (Ferrari)
4. Pezzucchi-Bianco (Porsche)
5. Frassineti-Lancieri (Ferrari)

1. Giammaria- Case' 111 pts.
5. Benucci 98 pts.
6. Lucchini 84 pts.
7. Balzan 83 pts.

Photo credit: Audi Sport Italia