Category: Generale

Goodbye of a BOSS GP hero

BOSS GP driver Armando Mangini retires, but remains with the series.

BOSS GP veteran Armando Mangini has announced his retirement from active racing at his home race in Imola. Mangini has been part of the BOSS GP family for nine consecutive years. The Italian contested a total of 72 races in Europe’s fastest racing series. A hand injury after a practice accident prevented races number 73 and 74 in Imola. Armando took it calmly: “I wanted to stop anyway.”

Monza 2018: Mangini on his way to the biggest sporting success of his long BOSS GP career

The Italian had his biggest sporting success last year in Monza. He won the Sunday race of the FORMULA class in his Dallara GP2 car. In a chaotic race he kept a cool head and drove to victory with constant lap times. These characteristics distinguished him for many years. Without making stupid mistakes, he drove the high-performance machines at a pace that challenged his often younger teammates.

Mangini (m.) with his friend and rival Walter Steding (l.) and his mechanic Mario (r.) at the farewell party

Mangini announced his plans at a farewell party at the Cuvée Sensorium victory ceremony in the BOSS GP hospitality. “Now it’s time to give the younger ones a chance.” As a farewell gift Armando gave his long-time competitors on the track and friends beside the racetrack bathrobes with personal imprints.

For next year, however, Mangini will remain in the BOSS GP as team manager. MM International is planning to have more than three cars at the start next season, according to Mangini. We wish him all the best – behind the pit wall and in his private life.

Report: Race 2 Imola

FORMULA title decision: Bracalente wins the race, Marco Ghiotto the championship.

How can it be better? The final decision for the championship title in the FORMULA class was made in the twelfth and last BOSS GP season race of 2019. Marco Ghiotto (ITA, Scuderia Palladio) went into the race weekend with better chances. After Alessandro Bracalente’s (ITA, Speed Center) victory in Saturday’s race his lead reduced from 15 to 12 points. This means: Ghiotto had to be at least sixth today if Bracalente scores another victory in Sunday’s race.

Ghiotto already had a shock moment at the start of the warm-up lap when his red GP2 Dallara did not come off the spot. Lucky for Ghiotto: Because a second car also stopped, Ghiotto could line up again in the second row of the grid for the rolling start. The Scuderia Palladio was able to breathe a short sigh of relief.

The best start behind OPEN champion Ingo Gerstl (AUT, Top Speed) had Luca Martucci (ITA, MM International), who almost caught Bracalente at the top. Ghiotto not only lost the place to Martucci, but also to Salvatore de Plano (ITA, Top Speed). However, Ghiotto overtook both again in the early stages and even managed to catch up with Bracalente with a couple of fast lap times. With second place he was fully on target for the title.

And it remained like that. Bracalente won the last race of the season and ended the year with an incredible result for a rookie: 5 victories, 10 podium places and only two retirements. In the end, one too many to defeat his fellow countryman Ghiotto, who also has a great score: 9 podium finishes and 2 victories, but only one DNF. After six exciting race weekends in Hockenheim, Spielberg, Monza, Assen, Brno and Imola, the new FORMULA champion Ghiotto and his opponent Bracalente finally separated by only nine points.

For the first time Marco Ghiotto is the champion of BOSS GP FORMULA class

Third place in the race went to Martucci, who fought again with de Plano until the middle of the race. De Plano finished fourth ahead of Andreas Fiedler, who secured third place in the championship with a damaged gearbox.

The best duel was delivered by Philippe Haezebrouck (FRA, Speed Center) and Gianluca Ripoli (ITA, MM International), with a better end for the Frenchman. Until the last lap both were within striking distance of each other on the 4.9-kilometer course. Towards the end of the 25-minute race, Peter Göllner (SUI, Speed Center) also caught up with the two, but could no longer attack. He finished the season with a respectable eighth place. Nicolas Matile (MCO, Zig-Zag) finished ninth in the class. By the way good news for the championship: His Team Zig-Zag Motorsport Service announced that they would be competing in more than two races next year.

Overall winner of the race was Ingo Gerstl (AUT, Top Speed), who once again put the pedal to the medal today in his Toro Rosso STR1. Although his mechanics gave everything, Phil Stratford had to load his Benetton B197 into the van early due to a defect. Second in the OPEN class and new runner-up instead is “Piter” (FRA, Ray-Ban), whose team managed to repair a big oil leak just before race began.

Next up: The BOSS GP annual award ceremony will take place on 7 December in Salzburg.

Report: Race 1 Imola

Alessandro Bracalente reduces the gap to championship leader Ghiotto by winning his 4th race of the year.

Alessandro Bracalente (ITA, Speed Center) drove unchallenged to his fourth victory of the season in the FORMULA class. The BOSS GP rookie thus reduced the gap to Marco Ghiotto (ITA, Scuderia Palladio) in the points standings from 15 to only 12 points. Now it is clear that the championship will be decided in the last race on Sunday. Ghiotto followed Bracalente throughout the race like a shadow. Only at the end of the race he lost the connection to Bracalente and the gap grow to an high of four seconds at the finish line.

Luca Martucci (ITA, MM International) showed an incredible pace at the finish. At the beginning of the race he dropped back to 9th place, but on the last lap he made it onto the podium. For Martucci it is his fifth visit on the podium in 2019. In a courageous last lap manoeuvre, he overtook Salvatore de Plano (ITA, Top Speed), who seems to have bad luck on his racing boots. For de Plano it was nevertheless the second-best result of the season and the highest finish since the Hockenheim season opener.

Andreas Fiedler (DEU, Fiedler Racing) was also involved in the fight for the podium at the opening stage of the race. In the end he finished fifth. He scored five championship points more than Philippe Haezebrouck (FRA, Speed Center), who finished seventh. Tomorrow Haezebrouck and Fiedler will fight for third place in the FORMULA ranking.

Marc Faggionato (MCO, Zig-Zag) could not set any time in qualifying because his car had not been repaired in time. That didn’t stop him from moving up to 6th place from last position on the grid. For several laps he battled with Haezebrouck for position.

Walter Steding (DEU, Inter Europol) was surprisingly in the top 6 at the beginning of the race, ahead of Martucci and Haezebrouck. With rank 8, he finished in good midfield this time.

Nicolas Matile (MCO, Zig-Zag) finished 9th with the only Auto GP Lola in the field. Peter Göllner won the internal team duel between him and Christian Eicke (both SUI, Speed Center).

Gianluca Ripoli (ITA, MM International) and Ulf Ehninger (DEU, ESBA Racing) had to retire early in the race. Because Ripoli stopped at the warm-up lap, he had to start at the back of the grid at the Indy start. He tried to improve his position in the first lap and collided with Ehninger’s Benetton in the Tosa hairpin.

The overall victory was again secured by Ingo Gerstl (AUT, Top Speed). Not surprisingly, the already crowned OPEN champion in his Toro Rosso dominated the eleventh race of the season.

The 12th and last race of the BOSS GP anniversary season will take place tomorrow Sunday at 2:10 p.m., before that at 10:30 a.m. is BOSS GP’s warm-up session.

Report: Qualifying Imola

The last qualifying session of 2019 promises high tension in the fight for the BOSS GP FORMULA title.

Ingo Gerstl (AUT, Top Speed) in the Toro Rosso STR1 takes his fifth pole position in the sixth race of the year. Behind him title contender Alessandro Bracalente (ITA, Speed Center) set the fastest time of the FORMULA drivers and put himself in a good position for the first race on Saturday afternoon (starting time: 15:50). With 1:30.641 he was a solid six-tenths faster than championship leader Marco Ghiotto (ITA, Scuderia Palladio), who will start the race in third place from the second row of the grid. On the very last lap Ghiotto managed to drive into the top-3. Should Ghiotto win the first race, Bracalente must finish at least sixth to postpone the title decision until the last race on Sunday.

Luca Martucci (ITA, MM International) starts from row 2 next to Ghiotto. This means that three Italian will chase pole setter Ingo Gerstl through Tamburello, Acque Minerali, Rivazza and Co. Benetton driver Phil Stratford (USA, Penn Elcom) had to retire from qualifying early. There had already been a leak in the gearbox yesterday. With just one fast lap he qualified in fifth place on the grid.

The fastest driver in Q2 was Salvatore de Plano (ITA, Top Speed), who qualified sixth overall. After a messed-up season, he wants to perform strongly in the finale.

Andreas Fiedler (DEU, Fiedler Racing) increased his pace from lap to lap as usual. When hardly anyone could further improve his lap times, Fiedler drove the seventh fastest time.  So, Fiedler starts a row ahead of his fiercest competitor for third place in the championship: Philippe Haezebrouck (FRA, Speed Center).

Walter Steding (DEU, Inter Europol) proved the strong impression from the free practice sessions on Friday with rank 10. With 10th place he was able to repeat his best qualifying result of this year in Assen.

The first of two races this weekend will have a distance of 20 minutes and begin at 3:50 p.m. – according to the forecast at dry weather and 22 degrees.

Preview & Guide Imola

Stratford (Benetton F1) follows a MM International GP2 car

The grand finale of the BOSS GP anniversary season will take place from 11 to 13 October – back in Imola after a two-year break.

The hilly and challenging course in the Italian town of Imola is the ideal venue for this season’s finale of Europe’s fastest racing series. Built in the 1950s, the Imola circuit has seen many triumphs and tragedies. The track, named after Enzo Ferrari and his early deceased son Dino, is still a highlight for every racing driver today. Although the track has not been on the Formula 1 racing calendar for several years, the 4.9-kilometre-long asphalt track has all the ingredients of a world-class track. Imola is also the only track in the BOSS GP calendar to be driven counterclockwise. This affects the set-up of the racing cars (more left turns) as well as the pilots themselves, where the neck muscles, for example, are subjected to different stresses. At the last appearance in Imola in 2017 the race winners were Ingo Gerstl (AUT, Top Speed) and Rinus van Kalmthout (NLD, Mansell Motorsport).

Why the BOSS GP Grande Finale is worth visiting?

The sixth round of the season with races 11 and 12 will decide the championship title in the FORMULA class. While Toro Rosso driver Ingo Gerstl (AUT, Top Speed) has defended his title in the OPEN classification prematurely, two Italians in their Formula 2 cars fight for the first place in the FORMULA ranking: Marco Ghiotto (Scuderia Palladio) goes after three second places en suite into the final round with a lead of 15 points over Alessandro Bracalente (Speed Center). A technical retirement at the last race in Brno meant that Bracalente is now the chaser. 50 points can still be scored in Imola, so Andreas Fiedler (DEU, Fiedler Racing) has still theoretical chances for the title. Practically he is fighting for third place against Philippe Haezebrouck (FRA, Speed Center). Who may put on the “crown”, will be determined at the very latest next Sunday.

In addition to BOSS GP, modern and historic sports car and touring car series are part of an exciting race weekend. The Renault Clio Cup, Lotus Cup and Alfa Revival Cup will, as usual, ensure exciting motorsport too.

BOSS GP schedule Imola

Friday, 11 October 2019:
10:45–11:15 Free Practice 1 (30 Minutes)
15:40–16:10 Free Practice 2 (30 Minutes)

Saturday, 12 October 2019:
10:50–11:20 Qualifying (Q1: 8 Minutes/Break: 2 Minutes/Q2: 20 Minutes)
15:50–16:25 Race 1 (20 Minutes)

Sunday, 13 October 2019:
10:30–10:40 Warm-up (10 Minutes)
14:05–14:45 Race 2 (25 Minutes)

How do I get tickets for the Imola event?

Admission to the main grandstand is free on all three racing days. The paddock is also opened to interested visitors.

Where can I find the BOSS GP race cars and pilots?

The teams and drivers of the BOSS GP are in the pit garages 23 to 32. Some cars are parked in the paddock next to the BOSS GP hospitality.

How can I follow the BOSS GP Grande Finale online?

Report: Race 2 Brno

Christopher Höher dedicate his win in Brno 2019 to his recently deceased father

Second win for Höher and Gerstl at the Masaryk Racing Days.

Christopher Höher (AUT, Top Speed) certainly didn’t have an easy time in race 2. Although the guest starter took the second win in FORMULA class this weekend, he only won slightly ahead of Marco Ghiotto (ITA, Scuderia Palladio).

At the beginning of the race Höher could follow the leading OPEN driver Ingo Gerstl (AUT, Top Speed). Gerstl already secured his fifth championship title in the OPEN class in the first race of the weekend. In race 2 he managed to win his eighth race of the season in his Toro Rosso STR1.

Behind the dominator, however, it was another exciting race in FORMULA class: Due to Höher overstraining his tyres at the beginning of the race in pursuit of Gerstl, he only defended himself on the literally last groove towards the end of the race. Ghiotto tried everything – drove to the left, drove to the right – but Höher remained ice-cold and held first position until the finish line.

Alessandro Bracalente (ITA, Speed Center) was the closest rival to Höher in the first stage of the race. On lap 4, however, the leader of the standings dropped positions, one lap later he parked his car in the pits with a clutch failure. A major setback in the championship as rival Ghiotto took 22 points with second place. Before the championship finale Ghiotto is 15 points ahead of Bracalente. In Imola a maximum of 50 points will be awarded.

f.l. Marco Ghiotto, OPEN winner Ingo Gerstl, FORMULA winner Christopher Höher and Luca Martucci

Despite a spin, Luca Martucci (ITA, MM International) finished third with a very strong closing stage. It was Martucci’s fourth podium finish this season. In the fight for the podium the decision was made after a Full Course Yellow in turn 1. There he overtook Andreas Fiedler (DEU, Fiedler Racing) who showed a strong pace with the fastest lap and some position wins at the start of the race. Fiedler could score at least two points more than Philippe Haezebrouck (FRA, Speed Center) with 4th place. In the standings, Fiedler is now back on 3rd place, but only one point ahead of Haezebrouck. This duel also promises excitement in the final races of the season.

During middle of the race it looked good for Marc Faggionato (MCO, Zig-Zag) too. In the battle with Höher and Ghiotto for the front Faggionato spun by himself. Because the engine stopped running, the second race of the weekend for the fast Monegasque was over too.

Behind Gianluca Ripoli (ITA, MM International) Walter Steding (DEU, Inter Europol) finished seventh with an impeccable performance. With an outstanding performance Peter Göllner (SUI, Speed Center) drove from the last grid position into the top-8. Nicolas Matile (MCO, Zig-Zag) in the only Auto-GP Lola spun shortly before the end and threw away a top result at the guest start.

Europe’s fastest racing series will return to Imola for the finale in five weeks. The Grande Finale of the BOSS GP 2019 will take place on October 12th and 13th.

Report: Race 1 Brno

Ingo Gerstl celebrates his victory in race 1 in Brno 2019

Ingo Gerstl secures the title with his seventh win of the season.

It wasn’t a surprise anymore: Ingo Gerstl (AUT, Top Speed) won the first race of the BOSS GP this weekend and finally fixed his fifth BOSS GP title in the highest category.

From a sporting point of view, the FORMULA category is more valuable at the moment, which has become even more acute after the first race of the day: The victory went to guest starter Christopher Höher (AUT, Top Speed), who was already the fastest Formula 2 driver in qualifying. For Höher it was an emotionally important victory, he drives in memory of his recently deceased father.

Marco Ghiotto (ITA, Scuderia Palladio) drove an important race: He crossed the finish line behind Höher without a single mistake, ahead of championship leader and main rival Alessandro Bracalente (ITA, Speed Center). Ghiotto thus reduced the gap in the overall standings to Bracalente, who benefited from a penalty for Philippe Haezebrouck (FRA, Speed Center). The fast Frenchman finished third, but this time it wasn’t going to be the desired podium: The race commissioners sanctioned an overtaking manoeuvre under Full Course Yellow with a 30-sec-penalty.

Andreas Fiedler (AUT, Fiedler Racing) finished fourth ahead of Haezebrouck, Florian Schnitzenbaumer (DEU, Top Speed) lost a few places and crossed the line on sixth place.

The most exciting duels were delivered by the fighting group with Nicolas Matile (MCO, Zig-Zag), Luca Martucci (ITA, MM International) and Gianluca Ripoli (ITA, MM International). Because Matiles Auto GP Lola stopped at the start, he had to line up at the back of the grid for the flying start. In the end he beat Martucci and Ripoli with some strong manoeuvres and finished seventh in the FORMULA class.

Walter Steding (DEU, Inter Europol) stayed in front of Christian Eicke (SUI, Speed Center), who came closer towards the end, but did not manage to pass his rival. Thomas Jakoubek (AUT, Top Speed) finished on 12th place after a pit stop.

Heavy rain prevented a race on Saturday afternoon. The organizers decided to start both races on Sunday. Although it rained also today, there was much less standing water on the track. At first the race started behind the safety car, after two laps the pace car drove to the pits. The only incident tricky conditions during the race was a spin by last year’s winner Marc Faggionato (MCO, Zig-Zag).

Race 2 follows at 12:40 pm.

Race 1 postponed to Sunday

Two BOSS GP cars on wet weather tyres on a slippery track in Brno 2019

The first race of BOSS GP in Brno has been postponed to Sunday, starting time 9:15 am.

The heavy rain caused Volker Ehekircher, the race director and series organiser to postpone the race scheduled for 14:50 today to Sunday. The weather forecasts promise better conditions for the second race day at the Masaryk Racing Days.

The warm-up scheduled for tomorrow will not take place, instead two BOSS GP races will be held on just one day. Race 1 starts at 9:15, race 2 at 12:55. Both races have a distance of 20 minutes.

Report: Qualifying Brno

Ingo Gerstl flys by in his Toro Rosso STR 1 in 2019 Brno Qualifying

First row for the Top Speed drivers Gerstl and Höher.

Qualifying for races 9 and 10 of the BOSS GP 2019 was held at 11 degrees outside temperature and in drizzle. At least the choice of tyres was easy: all the drivers went for the Pirelli Cinturato rain tyre. Despite the difficult weather conditions the BOSS GP pilots did a good job keeping their racing cars on the slippery track.

As expected, Ingo Gerstl (AUT, Top Speed) in Toro Rosso STR1 took another pole position for the two races in Brno. Next to him Christopher Höher (AUT, Top Speed) starts from row 1 in the best FORMULA car.

Despite a spin at the beginning of Q2 Marco Ghiotto (ITA, Scuderia Palladio) got into the right rhythm. With position 3 he starts one place ahead of rival Alessandro Bracalente (ITA, Speed Center). Bracalente had to deal with less driving time in Q1 for yesterday’s top 5. Although the conditions in both sessions remained the same, the drivers from Q2 were able to rewind significantly more laps. In the rain this is usually an advantage.

From row 3 the reigning champion Florian Schnitzenbaumer (DEU, Top Speed) and Philippe Haezebrouck (FRA, Speed Center) will start the races. Haezebrouck finished the session with an even faster time, but it was cancelled due to the disregard of a yellow flag. The same happened to four other pilots.

Last year’s winner Marc Faggionato (MCO, Zig-Zag) ended up eighth behind Andreas Fiedler (DEU, Fiedler Racing), Thomas Jakoubek (AUT, Top Speed) in ninth place despite little rain experience, Luca Martucci (ITA, MM International) in 10th place overall.

Nicolas Matile (MCO, Zig-Zag) and Gianluca Ripoli (ITA, MM International) starting from row 6. Walter Steding (DEU, Inter Europol), who rolled out with a defect shortly before the end of qualifying, and Christian Eicke (SUI, Speed Center) will start from row 7. Teammate Peter Göllner (SUI, Speed Center) missed the qualifying session, but can start in the races.

The first race over 20 minutes starts today at 14:50 on Saturday.

Report: Free Practice Brno

Christopher Höher followed by Alessandro Bracalente (both Dallara Mecachrome)

The Masaryk Racing Days kicked off with roaring engines.

Friday is the usual practice day – that means two 30-minute track sessions for the high-speed monsters of BOSS GP. The fastest driver on the first day of the Masaryk Racing Days in Brno was Ingo Gerstl (AUT, Top Speed) in his 2006 Toro Rosso Formula 1 car. Gerstl set a superb time of 1:36,368 in his first fast lap of the day, just one second above last year’s lap record (1:35,155). A new track record is targeted but could be prevented by the forecast rainy weather tomorrow.

An Austrian was also fastest in the FORMULA category: Christopher Höher (AUT, Top Speed) is making his BOSS GP comeback this weekend. The 22-year-old is no unknown in racing, he already competed in the ADAC GT Masters and is multiple Austrian racing car champion. He has also left his mark with successes in the BOSS GP. In practice, Höher blasted a lap with 1:43.906 which was more than one and a half seconds faster than the second fastest Formula 2. For Bracalente, Fiedler & Co. he will be hard to crack this weekend. Höher also drives in memory of his recently passed away father. A special design on the Dallara Mecachrome is reminiscent in honour of the biggest supporter of his motorsport career.

Leader of the standings Alessandro Bracalente (ITA, Speed Center) nevertheless experienced a good training day, also because he, unlike his title opponent Marco Ghiotto (ITA, Scuderia Palladio), remained without a spin. While Bracalente qualified for Q1, Ghiotto must qualify in Q2. Whether it is an advantage, or a disadvantage will be proven tomorrow in qualifying at 10 am.

Third fastest FORMULA driver in the free practice sessions was Marc Faggionato (MCO, Zig-Zag). Last year’s winner in his art car will certainly be one of the promising candidates for a trophy this year as well. Luca Martucci (ITA, MM International) rolled out to the start-finish line in the second practice session, nevertheless he also qualified for Q1 with the fourth fastest FORMULA time. Back in the BOSS GP is Florian Schnitzenbaumer (DEU, Top Speed). The 2018 FORMULA Champion is only occasionally at the start this year, with the sixth fastest time he proved that he would like to have a say about the podium places on Saturday and Sunday.

Most BOSS GP pilots used the test day on Thursday to prepare for the weekend. For Salvatore de Plano (ITA, Top Speed) the race weekend was over before it even began. Problems with the engine could not be solved on site. Armando Mangini (ITA, MM International) is also missing. He is recovering from an operation and supports his team mates on site. Still, tomorrow 15 motivated drivers go into the first race day. Qualifying starts at 10 am, followed by the first race at 2:50 pm.