Plenty of fans listened to the sounds of the BOSS GP Racing Series today. Numerous duels characterized the second round of the Rundstreckentrophy in Austria.
BOSS GP F1 Class
In the early stages of Sunday’s race, the two Top Speed teammates Ingo Gerstl (AUT) and Thomas Jackermeier (DEU) circulated around the 2.7-mile Formula 1 track in their Toro Rossos synchronously. Jackermeier even recorded his first leading miles in the BOSS GP Racing Series. This was remarkable, as it was only his second race in a Formula 1 car. In the second half of the race, however, Gerstl shifted up a gear and took the lead again in his Toro Rosso STR1. The Austrian not only drove to home victory but also to his fourth win of the 2022 season. Jackermeier finished the race in second place, as he did yesterday, and can thus look back on a highly successful debut weekend in the Toro Rosso STR3. Third place went to last year’s champion Ulf Ehninger (GER, ESBA Racing) in the 1997 Benetton.
BOSS GP OPEN Class
As pole setter of the second starting group, Harald Schlegelmilch (LVA, HS Engineering) was once again trying to catch up with the Formula 1 cars in front of him. Schlegelmilch drove to a safe start-finish victory in the OPEN class in his modified World Series car. Anton Werner (GER, Ryschka Motorsport) in the only IndyCar car finished second.
BOSS GP FORMULA Class
With an advantage of half a minute in the final classification Zdenek Chovanec-Lopez (PRT, MM International) dominated the class, which was mainly filled with Formula 2 cars. In contrast to yesterday, he tried to build up a bigger lead with fast lap times already in the early stages, which he succeeded in doing. With victory number 3 this season, Chovanec-Lopez also extended his lead in the standings. Behind the winner, the competitors were increasingly fighting with each other: Simone Colombo (ITA, MM International) and Marco Ghiotto (ITA, Scuderia Palladio) duelled for second place for a long time. Because Ghiotto was losing ground towards the end of the race due to overheated brakes, the reigning champion was only able to finish 3rd behind Hockenheim race winner Colombo. Luca Martucci (ITA, MM International) in the green glittering GP2 Dallara drove unchallenged to fourth place.
The best fights for positions were again delivered by the group around Paul O’Connell (IRE, HS Engineering) in the World Series V8 car, Michael Aberer (AUT, MA Motorsport), Walter Steding (GER, Scuderia Palladio) and Bianca Steiner (AUT, Steiner Motorsport) in their GP2 cars. The positions changed several times, including some impressive braking manoeuvres. In the end, it was Steiner who prevailed, delighted with fifth place and a flawless race but annoyed with a botched qualifying session. Behind O’Connell and Aberer, Giancarlo Pedetti (ITA, Nannini Racing) was also able to work his way up the order in the race. Steding finished ninth, Thomas Jakoubek (AUT, Top Speed) finished tenth, glad to see the chequered flag this time.
BOSS GP SUPER LIGHTS Class
The class of the six-cylinder cars was reserved for Andreas Hasler (AUT, Hasler Motorsport) from Styria, who made the short journey home with two winner’s trophies. For the next races, the BOSS GP rookie plans to finally be able to call up the full engine power of his older World Series car.
Hasler will have his next opportunity to do so in just two weeks’ time, at the BOSS GP races as part of the French Historic Grand Prix in Le Castellet (June 17-19, 2022).
In the fight for victory in the FORMULA classification, the action came to a head on the last lap. Class wins for Gerstl, Schlegelmilch, Colombo and Hasler.
BOSS GP rookie Zdenek Chovanec-Lopez (CZE, MM International) set an incredible pace for almost twenty minutes and already looked like the secure winner when his tyres started to degrade badly. Chovanec-Lopez’s GP2 car clearly started to drift more and more. In a powerslide he still tried to keep the fast-approaching Simone Colombo (ITA, MM International) behind him, but the effort was in vain. Colombo managed his Pirelli P-Zero slicks better and thus took the FORMULA victory in Sunday’s 25-minute race.
Marco Ghiotto (ITA, Scuderia Palladio) was again able to collect a trophy at the podium ceremony, he finished third. Luca Martucci (ITA, MM International) crossed the finish line in an unthankful fourth place. The experienced Italian defeated Michael Aberer (AUT, MA Motorsport), who kept Martucci busy at the beginning of the race. Today, Aberer was able to score a good result after his retirement yesterday.
Paul O’Connell (IRE, HS Engineering) finished sixth in class, ahead of Giancarlo Pedetti, who put in a clean performance as he did yesterday in his BOSS GP debut race. The best German was Walter Steding (Scuderia Palladio) in eighth place. Despite a collision at the start of the race, Alexander Seibold (GER, Scuderia Palladio) was also able to finish the race. Much to the delight of many fans, because Seibold started with a special helmet design as a tribute to the unforgotten Swiss Formula 1 and sports car racer Jo Siffert.
The other classes:
The OPEN category of the Formula 1 cars was again a straightforward affair for Ingo Gerstl (AUT, Top Speed) in the first car of Scuderia Toro Rosso (now Alpha Tauri). Despite an early technical knockout, Phil Stratford (USA, Penn Elcom Racing) and Ulf Ehninger (GER, ESBA Racing) were able to score second and third respectively.
Harald Schlegelmilch (LVA, HS Engineering) in the yellow-and-black World Series V8 machine performed as he did in Race 1 and, starting from last place on the grid, managed to overtake most of the field in the opening laps. The Latvian left all FORMULA cars behind and won the new classification of the modified BOSS GP cars.
After Andreas Hasler (AUT, Hasler Motorsport) could not take part in the race yesterday, the Austrian was eager to get through today. He succeeded and even more: Hasler claimed victory in the SUPER LIGHTS six-cylinder classification.
Tens of thousands of fans listened intently as the BOSS GP made its comeback at the Hockenheimring.
In the first race of the 2022 season, Latvian Harald Schlegelmilch (HS Engineering) achieved the rare feat of taking FORMULA class victory from the last grid position. After a couple of laps, the former German Formula 3 trophy winner was already in the top three of the class, and on the sixth lap he finally overtook the FORMULA leader Zdenek Chovanec-Lopez (CZE, MM International). Schlegelmilch thus won for the fourth time in the BOSS GP Racing Series after Spielberg and Brno 2021. Chovanec-Lopez was also delighted with second place in his BOSS GP debut race.
Behind them, a three-way battle between the Italians Marco Ghiotto (Scuderia Palladio), Simone Colombo and Luca Martucci (both MM International) was going on for a while – including tyre lockups and a couple of overtake attempts. On the penultimate lap, Colombo managed the decisive braking manoeuvre against Ghiotto in the hairpin. Colombo thus jumped onto the podium “last minute”.
With a light gap, the Irishman Paul O’Connell (“I’m living my dream”) from HS Engineering finished in sixth place. 7th place in class was still being fought for all the way to the finish line: Bianca Steiner (AUT, Steiner Motorsport), who had already passed Walter Steding (GER, Scuderia Palladio) in the meantime, complained about a sudden loss of power. In the end, it was just not enough to challenge Steding for seventh place. Giancarlo Pedetti (ITA, Nannini Racing) also finished his debut race in the BOSS GP Racing Series in the top ten with a ninth place.
The OPEN class was once again safe for Ingo Gerstl (AUT, Top Speed) in the Toro Rosso F1. Ulf Ehninger (GER, ESBA Racing) from Tübingen in a Benetton F1 kept out of all the FORMULA class fights and secured second place. His Benetton twin Phil Stratford (USA, Penn Elcom) was only seen for a short time, he had to retire from the race early on due to technical problems.
Michael Aberer (MA Motorsport) was among those beaten in race 1: The Austrian did it like Sebastien Vettel once did and sunk his chances for a top position in the gravel bed of the Sachs curve – but the damage to his GP2 car should be repaired by the second race. Start time for race 2 is tomorrow Sunday at 3:55 p.m. (CEST), before that the warm-up runs at 11:05. You can follow all the action via livestream on www.hockenheim-historic.de/en/live
Double wins for Ingo Gerstl and Harald Schlegelmilch at the Masaryk Racing Days.
The fourth event of the season brought the BOSS GP Racing Series to the Czech Republic’s largest racetrack in Brno on the first weekend of September. On the traditional date of the Masaryk Racing Days, the lively racing programme included some of the fastest race cars in the world, racing against each other.
OPEN class Ingo Gerstl (AUT, Top Speed) was once again unbeatable in the screaming Toro Rosso STR1 with a V10 Cosworth engine from 2006. The rivals are still missing, so Gerstl is driving towards the next title. It would be his sixth championship title in the OPEN class of Formula 1 and IndyCar cars. It would bring him up to par with his former rival and BOSS GP record holder Klaas Zwart (NLD). Ulf Ehninger (GER, ESBA Racing) made his debut on the Brno circuit in the popular 1997 Benetton. Despite not having a chance against Gerstl’s much more modern car, Ehninger presented himself in the best possible way on the Czech rollercoaster with two second places – thus keeping the championship open for Ehninger.
FORMULA class Harald Schlegelmilch (LVA, HS Engineering) showed early on this weekend that he is the favourite to win in class. After his successful performance at the Red Bull Ring earlier this year, the former Formula 3 professional once again showed the more established competition what he is capable of. Even though championship leader Marco Ghiotto (ITA, Scuderia Palladio) put a lot of pressure on him in the first race, Schlegelmilch kept his nerve in the last generation World Series car and won race 1 by a narrow margin. The next day in the second race Ghiotto started better and took the lead right at the rolling start. But Schlegelmilch, who was a bit slower on the straights, was able to brake later into the corners and take the lead before the halfway point of the race.
Third place in both races was taken by Luca Martucci, who is now just one point behind his team-mate Simone Colombo (both ITA, MM International) in the overall standings. With two fourth places, rookie Colombo got the best out of a weekend that started with an accident in practice. Walter Steding (GER, Scuderia Palladio; 5th twice) and Bruno Jarach (EST, Eesti Motorsport; 6th and 7th) also scored solid points. Unlike Andreas Fiedler (GER) and Christian Ferstl (AUT), who were both affected by technical problems.
The next two races of the 2021 BOSS GP Racing Series are on the schedule at the Autodromo Nazionale Monza on 2 and 3 October.
Pictures: Angelo Poletto and Erwin Strassnig/BOSS GP