Hanna and Christensen triumph at Sakhir
Ferrari Challenge Europe

Hanna and Christensen triumph at Sakhir

Sakhir | 17 February 2019

Tani Hanna and Peter Christensen won their respective classes in Race-2 of the Coppa Shell, which took place at sunset. Hanna (Formula Racing), who pulled off a very spectacular comeback, enjoyed the perfect end to the weekend after his second place in Race-1. For Peter Christensen (Formula Racing) the victory came at the end of a race marred by lots of accidents.

Close-up contacts. The grid handicap scrambled the positions won by the drivers in the afternoon qualifying session. At the start, Ernst Kirchmayr (Baron Motorsport) slipped past Eric Cheung (Formula Racing) who suffered a contact from Thomas Gostner (Ineco – MP Racing) on exiting the first hairpin bend and ended up in a spin. Having lost touch with the group, the Canadian returned to the fray but was now out of the running. The action didn’t end there. A few turns further on ‘Boris Gideon’ (Formula Racing) came into contact with Agata Smolka (Rossocorsa) putting them both out of the race. The winner of Race-1, James Weiland (Rossocorsa), also suffered the same fate.

These accidents brought out the Safety Car, which only returned to the pit lane 20 minutes after the chequered flag. After the restart, Kirchmayr pulled away from his pursuers. Among these, Tani Hanna started to clock a series of fast laps, overtaking Christian Kinch (Gohm Motorsport) at practically the same time as the track display announced Thomas Gostner’s drive-through penalty following his contact with Cheung. Peter Christensen suffered the same penalty a few laps down the line.

Hanna on the attack.  The Shell AM class saw Per Nielsen (Forza Racing) and Herve Mouly (Modena Motors – Sebastian Loeb Racing) in a struggle for first, while Hanna set off in pursuit of Kirchmayr. The Lebanese, determined to seal the win he just missed out on in Race-1, attacked the Austrian and passed him with a clean and effective manoeuvre. The Baron Motorsport driver locked onto Hanna’s tail, trying to lose as little time as possible and use the pace set by the Formula Racing driver to keep Christian Kinch at bay. The plan seemed to work well, but a tiny mistake allowed Kinch to pass and take second position. From the rear, in the meantime, Cheung successfully attacked Corinna Gostner, moving into sixth thanks to a beautiful pass on the outside of the Italian driver.

The finale saw an exciting fight for second between Kinch, Kirchmayr and the Japanese Ken Abe who joined the contest due to a loss of pace for the two drivers battling it out in front of him. The chequered flag prevented the Formula Racing driver from attacking the duo. He had to settle for fourth place while Christian Kinch and Ernst Kirchmayr celebrated on the podium with Tani Hanna.

In the Shell AM class, at the end of what was effectively a knockout race, the Danish Peter Christensen (Formula Racing) and the Belgian Laurent De Meeus finished on the podium.


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