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SPATARO BETS ON ALFAS FIRST VICTORY OF THE SEASON TARUMÃ ADDED TO 1998 CALENDAR Buenos Aires (16/09/98) - Argentina's Emiliano Spataro is highly optimist towards the ninth round of the South American Touring Car Championship, which will take ...

SPATARO BETS ON ALFAS FIRST VICTORY OF THE SEASON TARUMÃ ADDED TO 1998 CALENDAR

Buenos Aires (16/09/98) - Argentina's Emiliano Spataro is highly optimist towards the ninth round of the South American Touring Car Championship, which will take place at the city's world famous Autodromo Oscar Galvez, on October 4. After a free practice session there, yesterday, the former F-3000 driver believes he is up to give Alfa Romeo its first win of the season, a result that will be balance further the dispute for the S-ATCC title. So far the championship is wide open, with a total of 84 points to be earned at the last four rounds, that now includes Tarumã (Brazil), on October 18. Montevideo (November 22) an Interlagos (December 13), complete the calendar.

"I sure have high hopes for the Buenos Aires race," declared Spataro after his practice with the Race Car prepared Alfa Romeo 155 at the Buenos Aires circuit. Although his best race result this season is a third place in Curitiba, the young Argentine is a regular customer of the Top Qualifying sessions, having take part in five out of seven races in this grid deciding trial contested by the five fastest of the normal qualifying run.

"To be at the Top-Qualifying you need a fast car. After eight rounds I believe the good work performed by the Race Car engineers and the fact that I and my team mate Cocho Lopez are always exchanging set up data, I believe we now have a car fast enough for the entire race distance. That makes me highly optimistic to give Alfa its first win this season," said Spataro

This first win of 1998 could be achieved by Cocho Lopez, one of the most consistent drivers of the series. Out of eight races, Lopez scored three second places plus a third, a fourth and a fifth places, which gives him a total of 75 points, enough to keep him third in the championship alongside Brazilian Ingo Hoffmann. Ingos team-mate at the Pro.As/Mastercard squad, Oscar Larrauri, leads with 98 points, ten ahead of Brazilian Caca Bueno.

The Brahma/Esso team of Bueno and Juan Manuel Fangio II was also testing at Buenos Aires nr. 9 circuit yesterday, alongside the Race Car machines and Jose Visirs Toyota Corona. Visir team mate Oscar Fineschi is currently in Europe buying new equipment for their cars, what asks to an extra test session earlier next week. Fineschi is currently in England with Hugo Vidella and Carlos Riva, technical delegate for the S-ATCC. The three of them will be contacting teams and organisers of the BTCC at its Silverstone round this Sunday.

Early next week championship leader Oscar Larrauri and his team mate Ingo Hoffmann will shake down their BMW 320i at the La Plata circuit. Marcos Laborda, the man in charge of their cars, is particularly worried about the higher tyre wear noticed in Larrauri's machinery at Obera and have to sort out a new suspension geometry in order to solve the problem. By their side, Pedro Serafini and Hector Vaccarini are rebuilding the Chevrolet Vectras from Miguel Angel Guerra - who was at Monza as a special from the Minardi team, his former F-2 squad -, and Javier Balzano. Serafini and Vaccarini, the principals of INI Competition, expect to confirm the return of Carlos Cura, who did not took part at the Obera race, at their third Vectra. Another possible addition to the entry list is Miguel Alisi, who plans to contest the four remaining races with the second Honda Accord from Hugo Pierandrei operation. Pierandrei is kept busy lately by installing a new set of differential, roll bars and dampers on Daniel Marrochis car, who will evaluate such modifications over the week end at the Rosario circuit.

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Series General
Drivers Juan Manuel Fangio , Ingo Hoffmann , Oscar Larrauri , Caca Bueno , Jose Visir , Emiliano Spataro