1st Round at the San Marino Grand Prix

Pierre Kaffer starts his maiden SuperCup season with a win After 13 laps on Imola's Grand Prix track close to Bologna in Italy, Germany's Pierre Kaffer was flagged off as the winner of the first round of the Porsche Michelin SuperCup. Kaffer ...

Pierre Kaffer starts his maiden SuperCup season with a win

After 13 laps on Imola's Grand Prix track close to Bologna in Italy, Germany's Pierre Kaffer was flagged off as the winner of the first round of the Porsche Michelin SuperCup. Kaffer snatched the lead in lap one when his team mate and pole-sitter Frank Stippler ran wide in a corner. In the same lap Stippler was involved in an accident and retired. Kaffer contests his first full season in the world's fastest international makes cup, after making only one guest appearance on the Nurburgring in 2002.

Italy's Luca Riccitelli secured second place with his Porsche crossing the finish line 1.2 seconds after Kaffer's 911. In lap four Riccitelli overtook Walter Lechner jnr., who started the sprint from fourth position and moved up to third. Lechner finished his first ever SuperCup race fifth behind journalist and test driver Luigi Mocchia (Italy) who piloted the VIP Carrera as a guest of Porsche AG.

Patrick Huisman (Netherlands) put in his usual spirited performance. The four-time champion of the Porsche Michelin SuperCup (1997 to 2000) returned to the series after spending 2001 and 2002 contesting the German Touring Car Masters. For his come-back the racing professional qualified seventh and claimed third in the race.

Bad luck for Alessandro Zampedri (Italy) whose car was hit and damaged by Frank Stippler's GT3 Cup. The Porsche specialist took up the sprint from fifth position but had to retire in the pits in lap seven.

Pierre Kaffer (winner): I had much too much wheelspin at the start which was a bit of a catastrophe so I had to fight really hard to hold on to my position. The second fright came when I almost slid off on another competitor's coolant. But all in all my race was fantastic. My compliments to Riccitelli, he put in a perfect race and kept me under pressure. A big thanks to my team. They invested a lot of patience during testing and brought a great racing 911 to Imola."

Luca Riccitelli (second): "For my Conrero team the Porsche and the SuperCup are totally unfamiliar. We only started this project eight weeks ago with the support of Porsche Italia. Considering this, this result is even more astonishing. My race went well. Pierre kept me at bay and he deserved to win."

Patrick Huisman (third): "Starting from seventh I had very little hope for a good result. But my start was great and I overtook two drivers approaching the first corner. Stippler eliminated himself. From the fifth lap on I experienced some understeer because our car was set-up quite aggressively. So I had to back off in order to conserve the tyres. I couldn't have gone for Luca and Pierre but I would have had an answer for those behind me."

Race result:
1. Pierre Kaffer (Germany), Infineon Team Farnbacher PZM, 13 laps in 25.55.152min (= 147, 902kmh)
2. Luca Riccitelli (Italy), Conrero Squadra Corse, 1,207sec behind
3. Patrick Huisman (Netherlands), DeWalt Racing/PZRO-JAM, 8,737
4. Luigi Moccia (Italy, Porsche AG, 9,440
5. Walter Lechner jr. (Austria), Walter Lechner Racing School Team, 10,145
6. Sebastiaan Bleekemolen (Netherlands), Team Bleekemolen, 12,875
7. Ivan Capelli (Italy), Porsche AG, 13,536
8. Wolf Henzler (Germany), Aqua Nova Racing, 13,792
9. Toto Wolff (Austria), Walter Lechner Racing School Team, 16,404
10. Angelo Lancelotti (Italy), Conrero Squadra Corse, 22,139

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Series General
Drivers Patrick Huisman , Luca Riccitelli , Luigi Moccia , Pierre Kaffer , Wolf Henzler , Frank Stippler , Ivan Capelli , Toto Wolff , Sebastiaan Bleekemolen