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Challenge NA – 2017 season review – Ludwig, Muzzo, Williams, Rubbo: the perfect year

Challenge NA – 2017 season review – Ludwig, Muzzo, Williams, Rubbo: the perfect year

19 January 2018

Maranello, 19 January 2018 – Season number 24 of the Ferrari Challenge North America began at Laguna Seca with a win in the Trofeo Pirelli for rookie Peter Ludwig, an experienced GT driver, at the wheel of the 488 Challenge of Wide World of Cars. Martin Fuentes bagged Race-1 in Montreal but Ludwig triumphed on Sunday. Wei Lu hogged the limelight at Mosport Park. The Canadian also took Race-2 at Road America after victory in Race-1 for Cooper MacNeil, who was also unstoppable at Austin. Ludwig, Lu and MacNeil arrived at Mugello separated by a handful of points. Lu won in Race-1 to top the standings. However, the next day Ludwig used all his experience to turn the tables again with a win, pole position and fastest lap to take the title by just two points.
 
Trofeo Pirelli Am. Brent Holden and Marc Muzzo prevailed in the Trofeo Pirelli Am at Laguna Seca. Muzzo then notched up four consecutive wins at Montreal and Mosport Park. Then in the second half of the season Chris Cagnazzi emerged with victories in two races. Joel Weinberger, who switched to the 488 Challenge during the course of the season, dominated at Road America while Ross Chouest and Cagnazzi won at Homestead. Muzzo arrived at Mugello in need of a handful of points to wrap things up. He managed this in the first of the two days of Round 7 in Tuscany.
 
Coppa Shell. Karl Williams swept all before him in the Coppa Shell. The US driver performed brilliantly from the first event where he triumphed in Race-2 after Barry Zekelman’s victory on Saturday. Dave Musial pulled off a one-two at Montreal but Williams called the shots again at Mosport Park. He repeated the feat in Race 2 at Austin after Murray Rothlander had surprised everyone on Saturday. Musial again took the winner’s laurels in Race-1 at Homestead, but Williams came back the next day and sealed the title on Friday at Mugello.
 
Trofeo Pirelli 458. The Trofeo Pirelli 458 saw a tight fight all season between Joseph Rubbo and Naveen Rao, although Francesco Piovanetti, James Walker, Caesar Bacarella and José-Luis Valera all played a part, winning races in the 458 Challenge EVO. Rubbo and Rao arrived at Mugello almost level in the standings. Joseph finished first in Race-1 with Naveen third. Rao won Race 2, but Rubbo took the title with a second place finish.