Andrea Amici vindicated by an impressive win on Sunday
Andrea Amici pushed aside yesterday’s disappointment when he lost a win to a puncture by racing from the back of the grid to victory in today’s second Lamborghini Blancpain Super Trofeo race. Amici led home yesterday’s winner, Cédric Leimer and third placed Leonardo Geraci. Aside from the drama that red flagged the race, Adrian Newey was denied the opportunity to repeat his strong 8th placed finish on Saturday when a spin on the formation lap for race two saw him hit a concrete barrier, damaging his car beyond repair.
Cedric Leimer maintained his lead at the head of the field for the first three laps of race two, despite being challenged by Bonaldi’s Adrian Zaugg who was pressing to overhaul yesterday’s race winner. However, their skirmish was delayed when the #7 Aviatrax by Santéloc car driven by Alessandro Bortesi crashed, damaging the Armco barriering, which in turn called out the Safety Car, but the compromised barriering required the race to be stopped two laps later to allow repairs to be affected. Meanwhile, Alessandro emerged unscathed from his ordeal.
While the front three cars of Leimer, Zaugg and Svendsen-Cook had been absorbed in a fight for the lead, Andrea Amici who had started the race in 16th following his late puncture in race one, had scythed his way through the field, claiming 12 places in four laps and was busy closing down the leaders. His remarkable form was matched in part by another Imperiale driver, Andrea Palma, who had climbed from 20th to eleventh.
After a lengthy interlude on the grid, the re-start saw no diminishment in Amici’s ambition, as he overhauled Rupert Svendsen-Cook for third and as the pit window opened, the Italian elected to stop early, followed by Leonardo Geraci. The race lead was still in the hands of Leimer, who defended valiantly against the continuous challenges mounted by Adrian Zaugg. Eventually in the Village into Aintree complex, Zaugg’s pressure paid off and he assumed the race lead, and Leimer elected to head to the pitlane.
While Zaugg handed the #3 Bonaldi car over to team-mate Federico de Nora in the lead, Amici’s early stop and hard out laps enabled him to snatch the race lead. The pitlane was the scene for more drama as the front-running Automobili Lamborghini Racing Team Germany car was delayed during the driver change and Fabian Hamprecht dropped from a top three position down to 14th. A radio problem for Aristotellis Varvaroussis meant that he missed team instructions to pit and incurred a 30s time penalty, also dropping him and co-driver El Pato from 4th to 14th.
After the pitstops had shaken out, Amici held an unassailable lead to the flag, pursued by Leimer, but after suffering a puncture in race one, Leonardo Geraci also set the form book straight by advancing to third from 14th on the grid.
Checco Malavasi and Flavio Pierleoni finished the race in fifth and deservedly claimed the top step of the amateur podium ahead of the ever-present Laurent Jenny and Andrea Solimè.
P1 Andrea Amici #54, Autocarrozzeria Imperiale
“That was a great race today, I had to push really hard in the beginning and it was not easy, but it makes up for the difficulties we had yesterday.”
P2 Cédric Leimer #63, Autovitesse Garage R. Affolter
“I feel fantastic! I know that Andrea Amici has been faster than me all weekend, but the important thing for me is to claim points and finish all the races by bringing the car home in one piece. We'll spend a bit of time on the car before the next race and see what we can find to compete with Amici. Looking ahead, I am not so good in the heat so Paul Ricard will be challenging. But the aim will be as always to bring the car home and claim as many points as possible.”
P3 Leonardo Geraci #69, Touring Auto 2000 SRL
“It was a good race after the puncture yesterday. The start ended up being pretty difficult just due to traffic, but the team had a good strategy plan and I drove precisely to this - we stopped immediately when the pit window opened. When I re-started, I was able to increase my pace which enabled us to finish third and second was not so far away, so I am very, very happy.”
P5 Checco Malavasi/Flavio Pierleoni #89, Composit Motorsport (Amateur winners)
“My team-mate Flavio did all the hard work after the pit stop. My stint was okay, but I started in 10th, but we worked hard after the re-start and we were able to claim our first amateur trophy, so I must say a big thank you to my team - Composit Motorsport - for their great work this weekend.”