Valencia sees Balzan crowned European Trofeo Pirelli champion
Cheste (Valencia), 30 November - Competitors in the three Ferrari Challenge Trofeo Pirelli series were in action today at the Ricardo Tormo circuit for a second qualifying session and the first races. As usual, the racing was of a very high standard and saw the first champion of the weekend crowned, as Alessandro Balzan (Ferrari Moscow) did enough to take the crown in the European Trofeo Pirelli.
In qualifying for those in all three series, European, North American and Asia-Pacific of the Trofeo Pirelli, the fastest time overall was set by Venezuela's Enzo Potolicchio and in the European Coppa Shell, fastest was Giacomo Stratta (Forza Service) followed by Francisco Guedes and Raffaele Giannoni for Motor/Piacenza, with Hong Kong driver Alex Au coming out on top out of the gentleman drivers in the Nord America and Asia Pacific series.
The tempo increased in the afternoon with the first races, which were action packed featuring plenty of overtaking. In the Trofeo Pirelli for all three series, Race 1 saw the win go to Alessandro Balzan (Ferrari Moscow) ahead of Stefano Gai (Rossocorsa) and Lorenza Case (Motor/Piacenza.) The win was enough to give Balzan the European title at the end of a victory packed season.
The Coppa Shell (North America + Asia Pacific) also produced a tight battle for the top places, with Jim Booth (Ferrari of Atlanta) first across the line ahead of Alex Au and Paul Van Loenhout (Ferrari of Australia), while in the very competitive European division, a stellar performance came from Raffaele Giannoni (Motor/Piacenza), first ahead of the man who already has the title, Alexey Basov (Ferrari Moscow) and Spanish Rossocorsa driver Jaime Font.
Adding to the spectacle, were the historic Formula 1 cars, run by the F1 Clienti department of Maranello, who did some untimed laps. No less than 19 jewels of the past took part including an F1-87/88 C from 1987 (ex Alboreto/Berger,) five cars previously driven by Michael Schumacher from 1998 to 2004 and the F2007 which won the title with Kimi Raikkonen. There were also untimed sessions for those taking part in the exclusive XX programmes, for non-homologated cars made for on-track use.
Tomorrow sees the second round of races for all series of the Ferrari Challenge, shown live in Italy on Sky Sport 2: 10.35- Trofeo Pirelli Europe + North America +APAC; 12.35- Coppa Shell Asia Pacific + North America; 16.00-Coppa Shell Europe. In Spain, viewers can watch the action on Marca TV, the event's media partner, while the European races will be shown in over 60 countries around the world.