Lakeville, CT – July 5, 2013. After two practice sessions earlier today, interrupted by red flag stoppages, Risi Competizione approached this afternoon’s 15-minute GT qualifying session with an open mind. There is still set up work to be done to fine-tune the balance of the Ferrari, but the basis for a fast car is there.

Olivier Beretta, who was tasked with qualifying the No.62 F458 Italia, used all his many years of ALMS experience wisely and Risi will start on the second row of the GT grid for tomorrow’s Northeast Grand Prix. His best time of 51.499, set on his 7th flying lap, was 0.5 seconds from the pole-setting No.56 BMW of John Edwards.

#62 Risi Competizione Ferrari F458 Italia: Olivier Beretta, Matteo Malucelli
#62 Risi Competizione Ferrari F458 Italia: Olivier Beretta, Matteo Malucelli

Photo by: Jackie Buys

In blisteringly hot conditions at Lime Rock Park in Connecticut – an ambient temperature of 93oF and track temperature of 121oF was noted as the session started – the 11 GT cars in the field set out to tackle the 1.45 mile, 7-turn track. The Monegasque driver completed a total of 11 laps, and was happy with the position he and his team mate, Matteo Malucelli of Italy will start from in tomorrow’s 2 hour 45 minute race.

“I think we can still improve,” he said after qualifying, “but it’s pretty close; the BMW did quite a good lap time and then there’s two tenths to the next few. We still have to work on the car, but the team has done a good job and it’s a long race ahead. We are starting on the second row so I’m quite confident.

“Everyone suffered from losing time this morning with the red flags so we can’t complain about that. It’s just a question of trying to find a good compromise on balance between the front and the rear. The car is there but it’s just to make it work together. When the rear is good, the front is not and the same in reverse. It’s a question of finding the right balance and I think we can close the little gap there is to the front.”

The American Le Mans Northeast Grand Prix will take place on Saturday, July 6. It is the fourth round of the American Le Mans Series presented by Tequila Patrón and the 2 hour 45 minute race will begin at 3:05pm.

Risi Competizione