FFF Racing by ACM brought to a close its 2017 International GT Open programme on Sunday (29 October) as the series travelled to Barcelona for round seven of the championship.
The race weekend proved to be a frustrating one for Vitantonio Liuzzi, Hiroshi Hamaguchi and the Chinese-based team with a best result of fifth in the Pro-Am class being the highlight of the weekend following a good recovery drive in the final round.
Qualifying for the first race of the weekend saw Liuzzi record the eighth best time in class, 17th overall. Very much in the middle of the pack for the start, Liuzzi raced hard into turns one and two, only for glancing contact with a rival to send him spearing in to Craig Dolby’s Lamborghini, ending the day for prematurely for the Italian and the team.
Repairs in place, Hamaguchi lined up 17th on Sunday in the #555 Lamborghini Huracan for the second race. However, a trip through the gravel trap on the first lap dropped the Japanese driver to 22nd position and set the stage for a strong comeback.
The Gentleman driver was able to regain a couple of positions before handing over to Liuzzi as the pit stop window opened with 35 minutes remaining. Liuzzi resumed in 20th position, quickly moving ahead of Hendrik Still’s Lamborghini and closing in on Tom Onslow-Cole’s Mercedes.
The duo both moved through the field together and with 10 minutes remaining, Liuzzi made his way past Onslow-Cole to run P13, fifth in class, and this was how it remained come the chequered flag after a strong recovery drive.
“The pace was there in the races, but we didn’t get much of a chance to show it,” said FFF Racing Team Owner Sean Fu Songyang. “Qualifying was not what we expected at all and perhaps we were a bit unlucky with the traffic but that penalised us as the times were so close. We made good starts to gain positions, but then lost some too – we were hit in the first race and then Hiroshi went in to the gravel in the second race, so a tough weekend.
“It has been a closely fought contest this year, one we can take a great deal from as we look forward to the next challenge!”
FFF Racing by ACM now turn its attention to the FIA GT Cup at Macau which takes place 16-19 November.