The first race of the 2017 Finali Mondiali got underway at just past 1 pm at the Autodromo Internazionale del Mugello in the rolling hills of Italy’s Tuscany region. Cool temperatures and cloudy skies, in addition to all of the rubber laid down during the preceding two days made for a very fast track and ideal driving conditions. Featuring thirty one cars from the Asia Pacific region of the Ferrari Challenge Championship, drivers did battle over thirty minutes at the fast, undulating circuit.
Trofeo Pirelli. Philippe Prette (Ferrari of Hong Kong) completed his championship march in the Asia Pacific Trofeo Pirelli class, clinching his third Ferrari Challenge career title. Further up the field, however, Go Max (M Auto) took a hard earned, but dominant win in Race-1 of round 7 for the Asia Pacific Ferrari Challenge series. After an epic first turn scrap, Tadakazu Kojima (Rosso Scuderia) captured the overall lead of the race while competing in the Coppa Shell class. Go Max was never far behind, however, and set the fastest lap of the race to that point, a 1:55.0. A caution flag seven minutes into the start of the race neutralized the most tantalizing battle for the lead, while two cars were rescued from precarious positions after contact. Once the race went back to green flag running with 15 minutes to go, Go Max set about eating into Kojima’s lead and made a late braking maneuver into one of Mugello’s numerous right-left chicanes. Huilin Han (CTF Beijing) also fought past with Philippe following through. However, by that point, Go had established a lead that could not be closed down, taking a dominant win. Huilin Han came home in second and claimed fastest lap of the race with third place enough for Philippe Prette to confirm his status as the Trofeo Pirelli 2017 Champion in Asia.
Trofeo Pirelli Am. Angie King (Autostrada Motore Manila) took a lights to flag victory in the Tofeo Pirelli AM class in round one, but it was the battle for second and third place that had championship implications. While neither driver was able to clinch the championship, Ken Seto (Rosso Scuderia) did well to beat his main rival, Tiger Wu (Modena Motori Taiwan) in a hard fought battle. Ken came out ahead, finishing second, while Tiger finished close behind in third, founding out the podium.
Coppa Shell. A remarkable qualifying set up a stunning performance from Tadakazu Kojima (Rosso Scuderia), who managed to take the overall lead of the race at the first corner. It was a lead that he maintained until the race reached about half distance and the overwhelming consistency of Go Max led to him being shuffled down the overall order. Eric Zang (Denker Guangzhou) did well to close the championship gap to Makoto Fujiwara (Cornes Tokyo) by finishing in second place to Makoto Fujiwara’s fourth. Charles Chan (Ferrari Hong Kong) also consolidated this third position in the championship, by taking third place in the race, and completing the podium. David Dicker (Continental Cars Auckland) took the Gentleman’s cup, finishing sixth overall in class and Kanthicha Chimsiri (Cavallino Motors Bangkok) took the Ladies Cup.
Pirelli 458. Martin Berry (Ital Auto Singapore) completed another flawless lights to flag race, with the already confirmed champion of the 458 EVO class claiming victory in race one. Sky Chen (Cornes Osaka) took second place while Tamotsu Kondo (Auto Cavallino Kobe) completed the podium in third place.
Schedule. Race two, and the final race of Round 7 of the Asia Pacific Ferrari Challenge Championship will take place on Saturday at 16:40.