SMP Racing leads at midrace
24H of Spa-Francorchamps

SMP Racing leads at midrace

Spa-Francorchamps | 28 July 2019

The Ferrari of SMP Racing was first over the line at midrace to take valuable championship points.

Proceedings had been held up by a string of Full Course Yellows, the longest of which due to poor visibility in the heavy rain. Previously, Ferrari’s only entrant in the Silver Cup, that of Rinaldi Racing, was forced to retire on lap 168, while lap 196 saw yet another Full Course Yellow, this time to recover car no. 52 of AF Corse, stranded at the Bus Stop. The 488 GT3, then driven by Toni Vilander, had to do almost half a lap on the rims because of the virtually simultaneous explosion of the rear tyres. However, at the last chicane it ended up in a spin, unable to continue. Once the race resumed, on lap 199 Alessandro Pier Guidi tried to steer the 488 GT3 no. 51 past a Lamborghini. However, a contact on the rear sent him crashing into the barriers on the stretch before Blanchimont. Retirement was inevitable, which was a shame because having already served the mandatory technical stop in Full Course Yellow he could have at least put the AF Corse Pro crew back into the fight for the podium. Meanwhile, Mikhail Aleshin replaced Davide Rigon in the car of SMP Racing, once again driving the 488 GT3 through a torrential downpour. Twelve minutes from the stroke of the twelfth hour, the race returned to normal, but then another accident required a further neutralisation. Car no. 72 car remained on the track until the stroke of midrace, which it completed in first, gaining 12 points in the overall standings.

At the twelfth hour, in the Pro-Am Cup Giancarlo Fisichella was in fourth for Tempesta Racing, while Pisarik was in seventh. In the Am class, Hendrik Still held second with the Ferrari of Rinaldi Racing, Thomas Neubauer was in fifth with the 488 GT3 of HB Racing and Rory Penttinen in sixth.