Monza: Race report

A simply breathtaking race got the 2005 season off to the best possible start in Monza today. In one of the closest FIA GT races ever, three cars crossed the finish line separated by just 1.456 seconds, after 87 laps of out and out battle around...

A simply breathtaking race got the 2005 season off to the best possible start in Monza today. In one of the closest FIA GT races ever, three cars crossed the finish line separated by just 1.456 seconds, after 87 laps of out and out battle around the 5.793 km circuit. As well as the victorious Ferrari, Maserati and Corvette both looked like potential winners, and the scene is set for a fantastic season. With plenty of overtaking, racing incidents and excitement, the spectators, estimated at over 40,000, were treated to a real show of GT racing at its best.

GT1 : LARBRE VICTORIOUS -- VITAPHONE FINISHES CLOSE BEHIND

Victory went to Larbre Competition, on its return to the Championship after an absence of a year and a half. The French team, which won three FIA GT titles between 2000 and 2002, added another win to its impressive tally when Pedro Lamy of Portugal and Gabriele Gardel of Switzerland were victorious today. Their Ferrari 550 Maranello completed the 500 km in two hours and 40 minutes, holding off the charging Vitaphone Racing Team Maserati MC 12 cars until the chequered flag. Bartels, who had been closing in over the last three laps, crossed the line less than a second behind, while his team-mate Fabio Babini brought the German team's second car home in third place. With the second Larbre car finishing sixth, Larbre is one point behind Vitaphone in the Teams classification.

GT2 : GRUPPE M UNTOUCHABLE

In the GT2 race, the real battle was between the two Gruppe M Porsches, with the nr 66 car of Germans Marc Lieb and Mike Rockenfeller finally winning out over the nr 88 Porsche of Tim Sugden and Emmanuel Collard. Third place went to the impressive Ebimotors car, driven by Emanuele Busnelli and Luigi Moccia, a former race winner with Art Engineering and Fabio Babini. Lieb and Rockenfeller finished in an excellent seventh place overall, just 2.086 seconds ahead of their chasing team-mates, having completed 84 laps.

<pre> ROUND 1 - PROVISIONAL TOP TEN

POS NO CL  DRIVERS                      TEAM, CAR                                TIME           LAPS GAP
1   11 GT1 Lamy/Gardel                  Larbre Competition Ferrari 550 Maranello 2:40:30.881    87
2    9 GT1 Bartels/Scheider             Vitaphone Racing Team Maserati MC12 GT1  2:40:31.802    87   0.921
3   10 GT1 Babini/Biagi                 Vitaphone Racing Team Maserati MC12 GT1  2:40:32.337    87   1.456
4   16 GT1 Peter/Buncombe/Rusinov       JMB Racing Maserati MC12 GT1             2:40:41.479    86   1 LAP
5   15 GT1 Bertolini/Wendlinger         JMB Racing Maserati MC12 GT1             2:40:35.993    84   3 LAPS
6   12 GT1 Bryner/Calderari/Zacchia     Larbre Competition Ferrari 550 Maranello 2:40:53.555    84   3 LAPS
7   66 GT2 Lieb/Rockenfeller            Gruppe M Racing Porsche 996 GT3 RSR      2:41:41.849    84   3 LAPS
8   88 GT2 Collard/Sugden               Gruppe M Racing Porsche 996 GT3 RSR      2:41:43.931    84   3 LAPS
9   14 GT1 Keen/Halliday                Lister Racing Lister Storm GT            2:41:56.659    83   4 LAPS
10   7 GT1 Ruberti/Camathias            Graham Nash Motorsport Saleen S7 R       2:40:50.335    82   5 LAPS

-fia-

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About this article
Series Blancpain Sprint
Drivers Emmanuel Collard , Pedro Lamy , Luigi Moccia , Marc Lieb , Tim Sugden , Fabio Babini , Mike Rockenfeller , Gabriele Gardel
Teams Larbre Competition