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.
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.