Santoponte beats Grossmann for first Trofeo Pirelli win

Matteo Santoponte successfully converted pole position into victory in the first Ferrari Challenge Trofeo Pirelli encounter of the Finali Mondiali weekend at Mugello.

Poleman Santoponte, also known as 'Babalus', prevailed in a race-long battle with Bjorn Grossmann, who had already been crowned series champion at the previous round at Valencia.

Grossmann surged from fourth to second on the opening lap, with front row starter Dario Caso getting stuck in the gravel, and initially stuck close to Santoponte's tail before fading somewhat as the 30-minute race passed half-distance.

But the German had some pace up in reserve for the closing laps, closing the gap to the leader from 1.6s to 0.9s and finally taking the chequered flag 1.1s behind Santoponte, who sealed his fourth win of the season.

Completing the podium finishers was David Gostner, who was never able to trouble the leading duo and finished 16s back in third ahead of Florian Merckx and WEC regular Alexey Basov.

Alessandro Vezzoni was best of the Trofeo Pirelli Am runners in sixth overall, giving him the class points lead ahead of Martin Nelson.

In the Ferrari Challenge Asia-Pacific race, Renaldi Hutasoit took a comfortable win from Steve Wyatt, while Robert Acer was best of the Asia-Pacific Trofeo Pirelli Am runners after long-time leader Tani Hanna was eliminated in a clash with a rival.

Tadakazu Kojima meanwhile took honours in the Asia-Pacific Coppa Shell class.

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About this article
Series Ferrari
Event Finali Mondiali
Track Mugello Circuit
Drivers Bjorn Grossmann , Matteo Santoponte
Article type Race report