Scarperia, 25 March 2018 – Nicklas Nielsen, Jan Danis, Erich Prinoth and Murat Cuhadaroglu, all driving the 488 Challenge, won on the second day of the first round of Ferrari Challenge Europe at Mugello in front of a crowd of almost 10.000 people. Before the race, drivers, engineers and mechanics were invited to watch the Australian Formula 1 Grand Prix, rejoicing in Sebastian Vettel’s victory and Kimi Raikkonen’s third place. However, the biggest thrills were yet to come.
Trofeo Pirelli. The Trofeo Pirelli again kicked off proceedings, doing so with a replay of Saturday’s start to finish duel between young Nicklas Nielsen (Formula Racing) and Bjorn Grossmann (Octane 126). The two drivers once more fought their own private race, leaving a very competitive group of drivers, Alessandro Vezzoni (Rossocorsa-Pellin Racing), Sam Smeeth (Ferrari GB), Jens Liebhauser (Formula Racing) and Enzo Potolicchio (Rossocorsa), to fight for third. The British driver was penalised with a drive through for being too aggressive, first with Vezzoni and then with Potolicchio. Vezzoni came third ahead of Liebhauser.
Pirelli Am. In the Trofeo Pirelli Am, Jan Danis (Scuderia Praha) enjoyed a simply perfect day. The Slovak driver had already taken pole position in the morning but he left his best for the race, winning and also recording the fastest lap. This was Danis’ first victory in the Ferrari Challenge. Saturday’s winner Chris Froggatt (Ferrari GB) and Sweden’s Martin Nelson with the 488 Challenge of Scuderia Autoropa, joined Danis on the podium. Fourth place went to rookie John Sawbridge (Ferrari GB).
Coppa Shell. The Coppa Shell saw Manuela Gostner (Ineco-MP Racing) start from pole and hold the lead at the first turn, repelling an attack from Jean-Claude Saada in the 488 Challenge of Rossocorsa. At the end of lap two, Race-1 winner Erich Prinoth caught Saada and then went off in pursuit of Manuela. The girl from Bolzano was looking odds on to hold off her teammate when she lost control of her 488 Challenge at the penultimate corner of lap 10, nullifying what had been a stunning performance up to that point. The podium for Race 2 turned into a carbon copy of Race-1, with Prinoth finishing first ahead of Saada and Thomas Gostner.
Shell Am. In the Coppa Shell Am class, Murat Cuhadaroglu again took pole but this time didn’t have to start from the back of the grid. In the race, the Turkish Kessel Racing driver went unchallenged, while “Agi” Smolka (Rossocorsa) held off attacks from Giuseppe Ramelli (Rossocorsa-Pellin Racing) to secure second. The next appointment is at Silverstone from 27 to 29 April.