Superstars International Series Donington Park round up
21 May 2012
It was a great weekend for Audi in the British round of the Superstars International Series at Donington Park. The Ingolstadt-based manufacturer scored a sensational double win with Italian Gianni Morbidelli and Swede Johan Kristoffersson. Morbidelli cruised to victory twice in front of his team-mate as the new Audi RS5 racecars proved beyond reach for everybody else on-track. Thanks to his double 2nd place, Kristoffersson managed to extend his championship lead as he now stands with 85 points in front of Biagi (69), Liuzzi (64) and Morbidelli (63).
There have been many stars today in the UK starting from local hero Johnny Herbert. The former Formula 1 racer made his championship return aboard the Swiss Team Maserati Quattroporte, cruising to a podium finish in Race 1 for the delight of his many supporters. In Race 2, Herbert ended up in 7th place after an early race contact. The third podium spot available for grabs in Race 2 went to another Formula 1 man, Vitantonio Liuzzi, who brought his Mercedes C63 AMG racer back to the top after having cruised to victory in Race 2 at Monza and his struggles at Imola.
Thomas Biagi held onto second place in standings by scoring a fourth and a sixth place and providing a massive effort in trying to stop the leading Audis. Another car manufacturer made its way to the top-5: the Solaris Motorsport Chevrolet Lumina of Francesco Sini took fourth in Race 2 in front of the BMW of Paolo Meloni.
The only issues for the Audi camp came on Thomas Schöffler's RS5. Due to a starter issue, he was forced to miss most part of qualifying and start from the back. In the morning race, he recovered up to a positive 6th place finish before having to withdraw from the afternoon one right before the start. Max Pigoli and Jaguar suffered from some tough luck too: the Como-based racer wounded up ninth in Race 1 after having been a threat for the leaders in the first few laps. In Race 2, his racecar literally stopped over Stefano Gabellini's BMW in a multi-car contact that prompted the safety-car out. Fellow Jaguar gun Tom Onslow-Cole, who was at his maiden SUPERSTARS race, was forced to retire twice despite leaving an incredibly strong impression in practice and being a valuable contender on Race Day.
The "Star Drivers" class wins were shared by Sandro Bettini (BMW M3) and Nico Caldarola (Mercedes C63 AMG).
Race 1 (Top-10): 1. Morbidelli (Audi RS5), 17 laps in 27’18”823, avg. 149,488 km/h; 2. Kristoffersson (Audi RS5) a 6.971; 3. Herbert (Maserati Quattroporte) a 8.976; 4. Biagi (BMW M3) a 9.977; 5. Liuzzi (Mercedes C63 AMG) a 13.980; 6. Schöffler a 14.195; 7. Gabellini (BMW M3) a 18.012; 8. Larini (Mercedes C63 AMG) a 18.759; 9. Pigoli (Jaguar XFR) a 19.618; 10. Sini (Chevrolet Lumina) a 10.886.
Race 2 (Top-10): 1. Morbidelli (Audi RS5), 15 laps in 27”18.200, avg. 131,951 Km/h; 2. Kristoffersson (Audi RS5) a 3.469; 3. Liuzzi (Mercedes C63 AMG) a 13.893; 4. Francesco Sini (Chevrolet Lumina) a 15.341; 5. Meloni (BMW M3) a 29.493; 6. Biagi (BMW M3) a 30.688; 7. Herbert (Maserati Quattroporte) a 32.472; 8. Boffo (Mercedes C63 AMG) a 37.380; 9. Cesari (Maserati Quattroporte) a 39.372; 10. Caldarola (Mercedes C63 AMG) a 47.653.
SUPERSTARS INTERNATIONAL SERIES after tree rounds (Top-5): 1. Johan Kristoffersson (Audi RS5 – KMS) 85; 2. Thomas Biagi (BMW M3 – Team BMW Dinamic) 69; 3. Vitantonio Liuzzi (Mercedes C63 AMG – Caal Racing) 64; 4. Gianni Morbidelli (Audi RS5 – Audi Sport Italia) 63; 5. Andrea Larini (Mercedes C63 AMG – Romeo Ferraris) 48.
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