Albert Costa, 10th; Andy Soucek, 18th; Miguel Molina, 20th

20 cars finished on the same lap of the winner

Mirko Bortolotti, Kevin Van der Linde and Matthieu Vaxivière won with Audi Team WRT in the 3 Hours of Imola, the first round of the GT World Challenge Europe. This ends a two-season drought of Audi wins.

A victory halfway through the race when Van der Linde took the team’s second relay and moved from fifth place to lead the race after beating the two Nielsen and Sirotkin Ferraris – Miguel Molina had done the car’s first relay – who had placed in the first two places taking advantage of the fact that the Audi of Frédéric Vervisch, leader in the first hour, had a slow relay. Van der Linde’s rhyme was impressive and when he stopped to give up the wheel he had a 20-second margin.

The two Ferraris, however, would have problems. The last stop of Molina’s car was slow. And the AF-Corse Ferrari was penalized for excessive pit speed. The options of the two Ferraris had disappeared.

Everything could change with a couple of ‘Full Yellow Track’ periods, but Mirko Bortolotti, behind the wheel of the Audi, knew how to keep the lead to cross the finish line in front of the Porsche GTX, managed by Monlau, from Jaminet-Pilet-Campbell, who entered minutes and five seconds from the winner containing the final attack attempts of the Mercedes-Akka of Marciello-Boguslavskiy-Fraga; Perhaps they lost the opportunity to try to battle for second place on the podium when they had to defend themselves against the Audi of Vanthoor-Mies-Weerts, who wanted to make a place for themselves on the podium.

Only one Spaniard entered the top ten. Albert Costa, along with his colleagues Fran Perera and Giacomo Altoe, took their Lamborghini to 10th place. On a circuit where it is difficult to overtake and where there were five neutralizations; If one of them catches you on the wrong foot or you have a slight oversight in a change of pilot, many positions are lost. A detail: the first twenty cars finished in the same lap and that means something.

Precisely Molina’s Ferrari closed the list of those who finished on the winner’s lap, while Andy Soucek’s Bentley was delayed by a penalty imposed on the Portuguese Álvaro Parente after touching another car and sending him to the gravel.

Jorge Cabezas, meanwhile, finished 22nd and fifth in the Silver category at the wheel of the Lamborghini he shared with Ezequiel Pérez Companc and Assenheimer.

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