SUPERSTARS AT DONINGTON


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Luigi Ferrara on his way to victory in the first Superstars International Series race at Donington last Sunday. Photo: www.dennisgoodwinphotography.com

At a meeting organised by the BRSCC, Donington Park played host to the British round of the Superstars International Series last weekend with nose to tail action in the Italian Touring Car series, as well as all five of the support championships.

Superstars International Series
Luigi Ferrara dominated race 1 of the Superstars International Series, surviving a Safety Car and a near spin to take the chequered flag. The 25-minute race saw plenty of race action out on track with the Safety Car called out after Francesco Sini hit the wall whilst attempting to make a move on Andrea Bacci. Oil on the track also caused multiple cars to spin in the final few minutes of the race. The race finished with Luigi Ferrara first, Giovanni Berton in second and Thomas Biagi in third.

A brave move around the outside of Redgate by Biagi wasn’t enough to keep Gianni Morbidelli from taking the win in race 2 of the Superstars International Series. The Italian driver was nose to tail with Biagi for almost 10 laps before Morbidelli sealed the deal at Redgate with a fantastic overtake to taking the lead and eventual win. Biagi and Max Murgelli completed the podium line-up. It was a disappointing race for Vitantonio Liuzzi and Luigi Ferrara however, with both drivers forced to retire due to mechanical issues.

Scottish Legends Cars Championship
Paul O’Brien dominated the Scottish Legends Cars Championship on Saturday winning two of the three races. A mistake by David Newall in race 1 saw O’Brien take the lead and eventual win. In race 2, a nail biting battle for between John Patterson, Robbie Burgoyne and David Hunter was cut short when a red flag forced an early end to the race following contact on lap 3 and Robbie Burgoyne was declared the winner. Paul O’Brien was back on top of the podium in race 3 despite a determined drive from John Patterson who had to settle for second place. Dean Brace finished third.

David Newall was the star of the Scottish Legends Car Championship on Sunday, claiming two race victories to his name. In race 1, John Paterson took a well-deserved win, holding off Ross Marshall, David Newall, Lee Fitzpatrick and David Allan to take the chequered flag. But it was David Newall who dominated the afternoon races, taking the last corner on the last lap in race 3 to take his second win of the weekend.

CNC Heads Sports/Saloon Championship
Simon Allaway was in a league of his own in the CNC Heads Sports/Saloon Championship winning with a sizable gap of 16 seconds to Grahame Tilley in second and Joe Spencer in third. It was disappointing race however for Gary Watson, who after starting from the pit lane, was forced to drop back again after running wide into the gravel on lap 2, eventually crossing the line in 7th place.

GTSprint International Series
The Ferrari 458 of Andrii Kruglyk and Raffaele Giammaria was unstoppable in race 1 of the GTSprint International Series, pulling out an impressive 36-second lead to take the chequered flag at the Leicestershire circuit. Richard Westbrook however was arguably the driver of the day, flying through the field to catch the Audi R8 of Thomas Schoffler and Oliver Jarvis in the final minute of the race for second place.

A strong start for Richard Westbrook in race 2 saw the Brit pull out a healthy lead over Andrii Krudlyk in second, while further back, contact at the Melbourne hairpin between Del Castello and Beretta saw Beretta take 6th place. But it was Kruglyk’s team mate Raffaele Giammaria who stole the show, hunting down Tsyplakov lap by lap to take the lead with just 3 minutes to go, leaving the #38 Ferrari 458 of Westbrook and Tsyplakov to once again settle for second place. Thomas Schoffler / Oliver Jarvis crossed the line in third place.

HRDC Allstars
The TVR Griffith of Mike Whittaker showed impressive pace in the HRDC Allstars, dominating in both qualifying and the race. His son, Michael Whittaker Jnr, wasn’t as lucky however, losing a wheel at Redgate forcing him to retire his Ford Mustang. As the chequered flag fell, Mike Whittaker took an easy victory ahead of Michael Squire and Justin Murphy in second and third respectively.

Auto GP
An early pit stop put an end to what looked like a dominant weekend for Narain Kathiekeyan in race 1 of Auto GP. A strong start from the Indian driver saw him pull away from Giovesi & Ghirelli but his luck was shorted lived when tyre degradation forced him to pit early, allowing his team mate Vittorio Ghirelli to take the lead and the eventual chequered flag. Katheikeyan finished in second and Giovesi in third.

Pit stops played their part once again in race 2 with De Jong’s race ruined by asevere delay during the change of his left rear-wheel, dropping the Dutch driver from second to last on the grid. Pit stop strategy played into Narain Kathiekeyan hands however with the Indian driver gaining good ground to take his first win of the weekend ahead of Meindert Van Buuren in second and Kevin Giovesi in third.

Donna Kelly