Crowning weekend with another championship title
First glorious summer weather, then rain on Friday afternoon during pre-qualifying.
This dragged on until Saturday morning for qualifying. The trio on the #333 finished in a good sixth place in the ProAm class. Ehret and Mastronardi qualified in second place in the Am class.
The final race of the Blancpain GT Series season started on Sunday afternoon. Until then, the weather conditions were changeable. Shortly before the start, it was decided to start on slicks for both cars. Salikhov had a good start and kept his position in the class. Ehret even managed to take the lead in the Am class. Everything went well until the pit stops. Mattschull took over the #333 and was able to drive up to 5th place in class with constant lap times. Mastronardi in the #488 convinced with a very strong performance in the Ferrari 488 GT3. Until he changed back to Ehret, the lead over the runner-up in class was two laps. Keilwitz took over the final stint on the #333. After the crew’s very good stop, Keilwitz returned to the track in fourth place in class. Now the exciting chase began because the podium was within reach. After only a few laps, he was able to hold on to the third place. Now it was time to make up the 12-second lead on the runner-up in the class. Shortly before the end, Keilwitz managed this with a very good overtaking manoeuvre and thus made the weekend perfect for the #333. The #488 also had something to be happy about. Ehret brought the Ferrari to the finish with a comfortable lead and thus secured the top spot on the podium in the Am class.
These results allowed Rinaldi Racing to take the Team Championship title in the ProAm overall standings. Mattschull also won the drivers’ championship title in the ProAm overall standings. In addition, the team is delighted to have finished second in the Am overall standings.
Michele Rinaldi: “An incredibly exciting race weekend for us. The two podium finishes at the finale are a dream. We are also very happy about the overall championship title in the ProAm class. An absolutely great result for the finale.
Many thanks to all the drivers. They did an outstanding job throughout the weekend and can be proud of their performance. The team worked perfectly again. The pit stops were concentrated and we didn’t make any mistakes.
Congratulations to Kessel Racing for the Blancpain Endurance Series Am class title. It was a very close result, but always a great and fair fight.
Thanks to Ferrari and to Michelotto. The Ferrari 488 GT3 has been running great throughout the season. The car is perfect for customer racing and the support is second to none.”
Barcelona was also the venue for the Blancpain GT Sports Club finale. Christian Hook competed in the Ferrari 458 GT3. In the qualifying race on Saturday, Hook was able to make up a few good positions at the start and also showed very good overtaking manoeuvres in the further course. In the end, it was only enough for 14th place, but the driver’s performance was convincing. The race on Sunday had to be started behind the safety car because of rain. The rain became heavier and heavier and some competitors flew off the track despite the safety car. Therefore, the race was ended with a red flag and not resumed.
Rinaldi Racing can be pleased with the following titles and placings in the championship:
1st place Blancpain GT Series ProAm Team
1st place Blancpain GT Series ProAm driver Mattschull
2nd place Blancpain GT Series ProAm driver Keilwitz
2nd place Blancpain GT Series Am Team
3rd place Blancpain GT Series Am driver Ehret / Mastronardi
2nd place Blancpain Endurance Series Am Team
2nd place Blancpain Endurance Series Am driver Ehret / Mastronardi
1st place Blancpain Sprint Series ProAm Team
1st place Blancpain Sprint Series ProAm driver Mattschull / Keilwitz