The 488 GT3 Evo 2020 of Eddie Cheever III, Chris Froggatt, Giancarlo Fisichella and Jonathan Hui completed the seventy-second 24 Hours of Spa-Francorchamps in second place in the Pro-Am class. The Sky Tempesta Racing quartet were up among the leaders throughout the race, earning some handy points in the battle for the GT World Challenge Europe title.
The race was heavily affected by the rain that fell along the historic Belgian circuit from the early hours of the morning, helping to shuffle the standings on several occasions. The Ferraris held the podium spots for over half the race and led at the start of the twelfth hour, battling for victory until the last stages in the Pro and Pro-Am classes.
Pro-Am. The second step of the podium claimed by Eddie Cheever III, Chris Froggatt, Giancarlo Fisichella and Jonathan Hui crowned an excellent performance by the team and drivers. Always in contention for victory, the 488 GT3 Evo 2020 of Sky Tempesta Racing had two top-level performers in the Italian drivers, who drove very quick and consistent stints. After the 24 Hours, Froggatt, Cheever and Hui lead the Endurance Cup class standings, while Froggatt and Cheever top the overall table ahead of Bertolini and Machiels. The AF Corse duo’s car, joined on this occasion by Daniel Serra and Niek Hommerson, was forced to retire due to an accident involving Machiels, luckily without any consequences for the driver. Fourth place went to the Ferrari of Rinaldi Racing, last year’s winner in the Am class. David Perel, Rino Mastronardi, Daniel Keilwitz and Pierre Ehret completed the race in fourth position, while the Lamborghini of Barwell Motorsport claimed the winner’s laurels.
Pro. The Ferraris entered in the Pro class ended up with a fifth place and plenty of regrets. Alessandro Pier Guidi and James Calado in the 488 GT3 Evo 2020 no. 51 had driven brilliantly overnight, holding the lead at the start of the twelfth hour, collecting points for the Endurance Cup standings. At the end of the sixth hour, however, the trio of James Calado, Nicklas Nielsen, Alessandro Pier Guidi took the points for fourth position. In a dramatic finale, Pier Guidi was unable to defend third place from Cairoli and Jaminet’s attacks, crossing the finish line in fifth. This result didn’t reflect the car’s performance and the great work in the pits by the mechanics. However, it did nevertheless close the gap to the overall leaders of the Endurance Cup to six lengths. The Ferrari of SMP Racing also left nursing regrets, forced to finish the race early after a contact with a rival. The strategy pursued by Davide Rigon, Miguel Molina and Sergey Sirotkin had allowed them to overcome two drive-throughs that could have compromised their race, and instead fight for the podium. Just over two hours before the chequered flag, a contact with the Porsche of Patrick Pilet caused Sirotkin to spin and hurtle into the barriers. After managing to resume the race, a further contact with the Porsche in the last half hour forced Molina to retire. A few minutes before the end, the Ferrari of HubAuto also had to retire early. The car, crewed by Kamui Kobayashi, Marcos Gomes and Tom Blomqvist, had closed in on the top fifteen after an excellent recovery from the back of the field.