Imperiale Racing SRL pairing of Sanna & Barri deliver consisitency with two fifith places in Misano
Misano, 05 May 2013. In the opening round of the Campionato Italiano Gran Turismo, Lamborghini was inches away from podium success, losing a last lap third place in the day’s opening race and wrapping up race two in a hard fought fifth position.
In the early morning race, Giancomo Barri started from P3 and held position to the driver change-over, handing the Gallardo GT3 FL2 to Giorgio Sanna, who repelled an attack from Tommaso Maino in the Ferrari 458 Italia, but in the closing stages of the race, he came under a sustained challenge from Stefano Colombo and Giuseppe Cirò. Almost within sight of the finish line, Sanna was forced to yield to the BMW Z4 and the Ferrari to cross the line in fifth place.
In the second race, compromised from a mid-grid starting position, Sanna fought to claim two positions shortly after the rolling start and was running in sixth, but lost out in a tussle with the Audi R8 LMS of Alex Frassineti. As his stint headed toward a conclusion, Giorgio found himself defending hard from the assertions of BMW’s Stefano Colombo, but held P7 into the pit window.
After the stops had shaken out, Giancomo Barri found himself in sixth, which became fifth after an unscheduled stop for the #5 Audi Sport Italia car. Within the the last quarter of an hour, Barri found his way past Audi’s Andrea Sonvico into fourth place. In the closing stages of the race, Barri was able to post green laps, but the Porsche 911 GT3 R of Vito Postiglione, the winning car from race one, was setting the fastest times of the race and narrowing the gap to the Gallardo. With five minutes to run, the Porsche slipped inside Barri at turn four, consigning the Imperiale Racing Lamborghini to P5, a position he held to the finish.
The weekend delivered the desired consistency that is important to build the foundation of a championship bid, if not the outright pace to win at this early stage in the season.
“In the first race I overtook Mapelli at the start and moved into second, but we knew that they were faster than us and the Porsche reclaimed the position on first lap. I did my best during the first stint to open a gap behind me because we were well aware that we would struggle with the tyres over the long run. And Giorgio had to fight hard in the final stages. It is a shame that we couldn’t finish on the podium in the first race, but to take home two fifth positions is a positive result and the best we could achieve this weekend. I am confident because now we have a lot more information and we know which way we have to go for the next races.”
“Race one was a good one and we deserved to be on the podium. The strategy was to make a good start and manage the tyres in the best way possible, as we knew that this would be our weakest point. Towards the end the tyres were finished but I still managed to hold onto the third position. However, on the last lap Colombo pushed me away and also Cirò took advantage of the situation and I had no chance to fight back.”
“For the second race, we decided to keep the same setup, as changing it would be too much of a risk. Consistency is important and with six or seven cars capable of winning races, finishing in the top five is a positive result. We see the glass as half full as we fully capitalized what we had at our disposal today, We still have a lot of work to do to understand how to get the best out of the tyres without overusing them, but I think we are on the right direction and taking steps forward.”