The first race of the BOSS GP in Hockenheim had a lot to offer. Andreas Fiedler wins the FORMULA class, Ingo Gerstl wins the OPEN class.
Update 14:05: The penalty against Marco Ghiotto has been rescinded. The result in the FORMULA class is as follows: 1st Andreas Fiedler, 2nd Marco Ghiotto, 3rd Alessandro Bracalente, 4th Gianluca Ripoli.
The decisive scene in the FORMULA class happened six minutes before the end of the race. Philippe Haezebrouck (FRA, Inter Europol) stopped at the exit of first corner. Salvatore de Plano (ITA, Top Speed) came around the corner in the slipstream of leader Andreas Fiedler (DEU, Fiedler Racing). When Fiedler avoided the standing car on the left, De Plano only had to go right. But he overtook Fiedler, which is forbidden under yellow. Only a few moments later the safety car was sent on the track and the field was neutralized.
The drama wasn’t over yet, because Salvatore de Plano spun at the restart and thereby lost the lead of the race. The race control decided to discontinue the race due to the recovery of De Plano’s vehicle – which is why, according to the regulations, the lap before the restart counts for the final result. De Plano (7th place) was prosecuted after the race with a time penalty.
Instead it was underdog Andreas Fiedler who cheered, setting the fastest times especially at the start of the race and quickly building up a lead over his rivals. Alessandro Bracalente (ITA, Speed Center) kept a cool head in a turbulent race and finished 3rd in his first BOSS GP race.
Gianluca Ripoli and Armando Mangini (both ITA, MM International) drove an inconspicuous and controlled race. Due to the penalty for De Plano, Ripoli and Mangini finished 4th and 5th in the FORMULA.
The cool temperatures in Hockenheim caused problems for all drivers who found it difficult to bring the tyres up to operating temperature. Remarkable are the performances of Thomas Jakoubek (AUT, Top Speed; 7th place), Walter Steding (DEU, Inter Europol; 8th place), Christian Eicke (SUI, Speed Center; 9th place) and Peter Göllner (SUI, Speed Center; 10th place), who kept their cars on the track and scored a good number of points.
Sergio Ghiotto (ITA, Scuderia Palladio) provided a shock moment on the way to the pre-start. The accident with wall contact ended without any serious consequences for Ghiotto. He was able to get out of the car on his own and completed a medical check at the Medical Center. Thanks to the fast work of the marshals at the Hockenheimring, the BOSS GP was able to complete the full 20 minutes of the race.
The OPEN class was an easy challenge for Ingo Gerstl (AUT, Top Speed) in the Toro Rosso STR1 after the technical failures of the two Benettons earlier this weekend. ‘Piter’ was classified second. Phil Stratford (USA, Penn Elcom) already parked his GP2 Judd in the grass in the warm up lap.
The first race was postponed from Saturday afternoon to Sunday morning due to the rain. The flat underfloor of the racing cars would have caused them to lose the traction because they ‘float up’. Not only the vehicles and their pilots would have been endangered, but also the marshals and the many volunteers.
The second race takes place at 2:10 p.m. local time.