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Mundial - FIA GT

MUNDIAL - GT OPEN EM MONZA

Domingo, 13 Outubro 2019 03:22 | Actualizado em Terça, 21 Janeiro 2020 03:31

Koller-Leutwiler, a Swiss duel for the first GT Cup overall crown

Only 13 points in the standings separate Koller, at the wheel of the VSR Lamborghini shared with Edoardo Liberati, and Leutwiler, driving the PZ Oberer Zürichsee by TFT Racing Porsche

Leutwiler also in contention for the other title to be decided, as he leads the Am class ahead of Glauco Solieri (Antonelli Motorsport Lambo)

Stellar appearance for the LPG/bioethanol-fueled Monte-Carlo Tecno ‘Nanni Galli’, which brings eco-racing to public attention

Belgium’s SRT squad makes debut with two Mercedes AMG-R

The decisive moment has come: Monza is hosting this weekend the sixth and final round of the inaugural edition of the GT Cup Open Europe and providing fans the excitement of a double title battle. 

The GT Cup Open Europe could not hope a more exciting closing to a successful and exciting maiden season. The new series for pro-am GT racing one step below GT3 has ‘passed the exam’ and that too will be celebrated on Sunday evening, at the GT Sport Awards ceremony that will take place in the historic and elegant Villa Reale close to the track.

With the Pro-Am and Teams crowns already secured by Hans-Peter Koller and Vincenzo Sospiri Racing, two crowns are still at stake: the top one (the Overall) and the one of the very competitive Am class.

Koller-Leutwiler, a Swiss duel for the first GT Cup overall crown
 
Only 13 points in the standings separate Koller, at the wheel of the VSR Lamborghini shared with Edoardo Liberati, and Leutwiler, driving the PZ Oberer Zürichsee by TFT Racing Porsche
Leutwiler also in contention for the other title to be decided, as he leads the Am class ahead of Glauco Solieri (Antonelli Motorsport Lambo)
Stellar appearance for the LPG/bioethanol-fueled Monte-Carlo Tecno ‘Nanni Galli’, which brings eco-racing to public attention
Belgium’s SRT squad makes debut with two Mercedes AMG-R
Madrid / Monza, 9 October 2019
The decisive moment has come: Monza is hosting this weekend the sixth and final round of the inaugural edition of the GT Cup Open Europe and providing fans the excitement of a double title battle.  
The GT Cup Open Europe could not hope a more exciting closing to a successful and exciting maiden season. The new series for pro-am GT racing one step below GT3 has ‘passed the exam’ and that too will be celebrated on Sunday evening, at the GT Sport Awards ceremony that will take place in the historic and elegant Villa Reale close to the track. 
With the Pro-Am and Teams crowns already secured by Hans-Peter Koller and Vincenzo Sospiri Racing, two crowns are still at stake: the top one (the Overall) and the one of the very competitive Am class. 
Helvetia rules in the Overall standings
The fight for the Overall title is a Swiss affair between Hans-Peter Koller and Niki Leutwiler, the two drivers that have come out on top throughout the season. 
 
 

 Koller, who drives a Lamborghini Huracan SuperTrofeo by Vincenzo Sospiri Racing, won alone the very first race at the Ricard and then collected five other wins together with Edoardo Liberati, while Leutwiler, with the Porsche 911 R Cup of PZ Oberer Zürichsee prepared by TFT Racing has shown tremendous consistency, scoring heavy points at all outings and winning at Spa. They are separated by only 13 points in the standings. 
Hans-Peter Koller is cautious ahead of the final round: “We have a job to finish and it is nice to be heading to Monza, the home track of the team and a track every driver loves”, says the St.Gallen-born, “It has been a season with ups and downs, but we picked an excellent momentum in the last two rounds, and the package has proven tremendous. VSR is a great team and Edoardo an outstanding team mate.” 
Niki Leutwiler, on his side, has a realistic approach to the final round : “We came tied in points with Hans-Peter to Barcelona, but my Race 1 wasn’t great. We struggled a bit with the set-up in practice and qualifying and we couldn’t do better than 6th in the race. Realistically, I think that dashed my chances towards the overall championship, given also the level of performance of our direct rivals. Things could change only if they have a real set-back, and as a sportsman, I don’t wish that. So, I think that at Monza we will focus in securing the Am title, and that would be a nice achievement after this very interesting maiden season of the GT Cup.”
The Zurich-born driver is already looking to 2020 and, together with TFT Racing and his partners, mainly the PZ Oberer Zürichsee, has already announced he intends to step up to the International GT Open next season, with a new Porsche 911 R GT3. The outfit will though continue in the GT Cup Open and is looking for drivers for the Porsche 911 R Cup. 
Solieri as third contender and Leutwiler’s top rival in Am
A third man still has mathematical chances to clinch the title: Glauco Solieri, at the wheel of the Lamborghini by Antonelli Motorsport, will do everything he can on home soil, but his task appears difficult, as he is 28 points behind the leader, with still 30 to be aarded. Still, the personable Italian had a terrific show during the season, with wins at Ricard and Spa, and he is still in contention for the Am title too. 
 
 

 
In that class, Koller leads Solieri by 10 points (with 20 still at stake) and everything is possible. Nineteen points behind the leader is Manel Cerqueda, the Andorran driver of the Baporo Motorsport Audi R8 LM, in the role of a third hypothetical title contender. 
In Pro-Am, it will be home race also for the Curti brothers, Carlo and Lino, at the wheel of their Tsunami RT Porsche 911 R Cup, who will race to secure their final third spot in the category from the attacks of Brazil’s Márcio Basso, with the Mercedes AMG R of Sports&You, this time associated with Portugal’s José Pedro Fontes. 
Eco-racing on show thanks to the Monte-Carlo Tecno ‘Nanni Galli’
Among the field entered a Monza, a new entry stick out with force: the Monte-Carlo Tecno ‘Nanni Galli’ using LPG and bio-ethanol as fuel. Well-known former F1 and Indycar driver Fulvio Maria Ballabio, now turned constructor, is behind this project that aims at proving the feasibility of environmental-friendly racing with traditional combustion engines. An initial version of this machine already took part to the Monza round of the International GT Open in 2012. The current evolution is equipped with and Alfa Romeo V8 engine and ready to make its race debut, under the banner of Scuderia San Marino and David Fumanelli joining Ballabio to share driving duties. 
SRT makes debut in the series
Last but not least, a great name in GT racing is making its debut in the GT Cup, which tastes like a return. SRT, the squad of the Selleslagh family from Belgium, was a stable presence and a race winner in the GT Open in 2012-14, and will enter two Mercedes AMG R, the new machines of the Flemish team. One of them will be entrusted to two well-known Italian GT stars, Lorenzo Bontempelli and Luciano Linossi, the other to a pair still to be nominated. 
The Monza round will offer fans plenty to enjoy: sister series promoted by GT Sport, the Euroformula Open and the International GT Open (with all title battles open) are as usual part of the programme, together with the TCR Europe, and the Caterham and KIA Platinum Cups. 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 
 
GT Cup Open Round 6: Monza, Italy
 
Timetable (All times local, CET)
 
Friday 11 October 2019 09:48-10:38 Free Practice 1 13:50-14:40 Free Practice 2 Saturday 12 October 2019  09:00-09:20 Qualifying 1 (driver 1) 13:05-13:55 Race 1 (55’ - Rolling Start) Sunday 13 October 2019 09:00-09:20 Qualifying 2 (driver 2) 12:35-13:25 Race 2 (50’ - Rolling Start)
 
Live webstreaming on www.gtcupopen.net
 
 
STANDINGS AFTER 10 ROUNDS OF 12
Overall: 1.Koller,102; 2. Leutwiler, 89 points; 3. Liberati, 87; 4. Solieri, 74; 5. De Wilde, 55; 6. Mauro-Toni, 54; etc Pro-Am: 1.Koller, 63; 2. Liberati, 58; 3. L.&C.Curti, 43; 4. Basso, 35; 5. SchoutenVandierendonck, Salas, 31; etc  Am: 1. Leutwiler, 71 points; 2. Solieri, 61; 3. Cerqueda, 52; 4.Mauro-Toni, Díaz-Varela, 49; 6. De Wilde, 45; etc Teams: 1. Vincenzo Sospiri Racing, 96 points; 2. PZ Oberer Zürichsee by TFT, 52; 3. EMG Motorsport, 44; 4. Antonelli Motorsport, 42; 5. Baporo Motorsport, 36; 6. Sports&You, 23; etc
The 2019 Calendar
28 April: Circuit Paul Ricard (F) 09 June: Spa-Francorchamps (B) 07 July:  Hungaroring (H)   08 Sept: Silverstone (GB) 22 Sept: Barcelona-Catalunya (E)  13 Oct:  Monza (I) 
 

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