EURO STC - ROUNDS 13 and 14 RACE RESULTS - weather: sunny, track: dry, temperature 33Â°C. TWO WINS FOR MORBIDELLI AND BMW WHILE KOX CLOSES WITHIN 5 POINTS ON GIOVANARDI Gianni Morbidelli struck again. He scored another couple of wins ...
EURO STC - ROUNDS 13 and 14
RACE RESULTS - weather: sunny, track: dry, temperature 33°C.
TWO WINS FOR MORBIDELLI AND BMW WHILE KOX CLOSES WITHIN 5 POINTS ON GIOVANARDI
Gianni Morbidelli struck again. He scored another couple of wins that definitely relaunched him and BMW in the battle for the Euro STC's crown. In the meantime, Peter Kox has closed the gap on series leader Fabrizio Giovanardi, whose margin has been reduced to 5 points only.
It is a perfect situation, to freeze the series in a one-month pause. Hostility will reopen in September for a btreath-taking three-meeting final rush. Nobody could expect any better for this Euro STC's maiden season.
The races in Misano proved that the final result will be strongly influenced by team orders. Kox is suffering from his "single" status, while great champions like Nicola Larini and Emanuele Naspetti had to bow and offer placements, or even a win in the case of the BMW man, to their teammates.
It was such a bitter pill to swallow for Naspetti, who finally had the chance to win within reach, after all the bad luck he had in the previous races. He put Morbidelli under pressure, overtook him, tried to leave him behind, but then BMW Italy's motorsport boss Umberto Grano, ordered him to give the lead back. Naspetti obeyed, but was totally frustrated, particularly because he wanted to dedicate that win to his late father, who had passed away in the morning after a long sickness.
RACE-ONE. Larini jumped Kox at the start, but Morbidelli was even quicker and took the lead at the first bend after a clash with Larini. That helped Kox to recover 2nd place, while Gabellini was 4th on Larini's tail. Few laps later, Naspetti overtook Gabellini to chase the leading trio: Morbidelli-Kox-Larini. Giovanardi too passed Gabellini, who lost another position to Colciago. On lap 4, Naspetti had Larini and then closed the gap to Kox, tenth after tenth. But the Dutchman reacted and as Naspetti's tyres went down, he increased his margin again.
Morbidelli got the chequered flag unchallenged, from Kox; in the final lap, Larini desperately tried to steal 3rd place to Naspetti, but when he knew he couldn't, left 4th to teammate Giovanardi.
Bernardoni stopped on the last-but-one lap, for an engine problem; Lucchetti and Roda also had withrawn earlier for a spark-plug problem and a damaged exhaust, respectively.
RACE-TWO. Bernardoni didn't line-up for a broken oil pump. Larini started from the pit-lane, after replacing the left rear wheel punctured on the warm-up lap.
Kox stalled at the green light and three BMWs rushed to the lead: Morbidelli, Naspetti and Gabellini in the order. Colciago was 4th, from Kox, Giovanardi and Sardelli. On lap 2, Kox dived inside Colciago and Giovanardi followed him; Colciago shut the door, but it was too late: he clashed with Giovanardi and risked to went off. De Lorenzi benefited from the situation, also overtaking Colciago, who dropped down to 7th. Kox, shadowed by Giovanardi, passed Gabellini, while Naspetti attacked Morbidelli and got him on lap 6, taking the lead.
There was a tough battle for 5 th, with Gabellini under pressure from a recovering Larini, De Lorenzi and Colciago. At the beginning of the final lap, Naspetti let Morbidelli pass on the pit straight, while Giovanardi tried invain to steal 3rd to Kox. As to Gabellini, he clashed with Larini and lost three positions.
The Euro STC will resume at Ljublijana, Slovenia, on September 3.
<pre> RACE RESULTS
RACE-ONE - 12 laps 1. Gianni Morbidelli CiBiEmme Engineering BMW 320i E36 19:33.727 149.43 kmh 2. Peter Kox (NL) JAS Engineering Honda Accord 19:35.331 + 1.604 3. Emanuele Naspetti (I) CiBiEmme Engineering BMW 320i E36 19:36.745 + 3.018 4. Fabrizio Giovanardi (I) Nordauto Engineering Alfa Romeo 156 19:38.887 + 5.160 5. Nicola Larini (I) Nordauto Engineering Alfa Romeo 156 19:39.757 + 6.030 6. Roberto Colciago (I) AGS Motorsport Audi A4 Quattro 19:41.672 + 7.945 7. Stefano Gabellini (I) Christy's Team BMW 320i E36 19:45.707 + 11.980 8. Gianluca De Lorenzi (I) Nordauto Engineering Alfa Romeo 156 19:46.229 + 12.502 9. Massimo Pigoli (I) Christy's Team BMW 320i E36 19:53.414 + 19.687 10. Sandro Sardelli (I) Team Isert BMW 320i E36 19:54.996 + 21.239 11. Moreno Soli (I) Soli Racing Team Alfa Romeo 156 20:24.187 + 50.460 12. Stefano Bonello (I) AGS Motorsport Audi A4 Quattro 20:30.270 + 54.543 Dnf Romana Bernardoni (I) Nordauto Engineering Alfa Romeo 156 1 lap engine Dnf Gianluca Roda (I) Greyhound Motorsport Opel Vectra 16V 3 laps exhaust Dnf Guido Lucchetti (I) Nath Racing Audi A4 Quattro 8 laps engine
Fastest lap: Naspetti, 1:36.525, average speed 151.42 kmh, on lap 3
RACE-TWO - 12 laps 1. Gianni Morbidelli BMW Team CiBiEmme BMW 320i E36 19:35.765 149.17 kmh 2. Emanuele Naspetti (I) BMW Team CiBiEmme BMW 320i E36 19:36.146 + 0.381 3. Peter Kox (NL) JAS Engineering Honda Accord 19:38.613 + 2.848 4. Fabrizio Giovanardi (I) Alfa Romeo Nordauto Alfa Romeo 156 19:38.983 + 3.218 5. Nicola Larini (I) Alfa Romeo Nordauto Alfa Romeo 156 19:50.120 + 14.355 6. Gianluca De Lorenzi (I) Nordauto Engineering Alfa Romeo 156 19:51.239 + 15.564 7. Roberto Colciago (I) AGS Motorsport Audi A4 Quattro 19:51.740 + 15.975 8. Stefano Gabellini (I) Christy's Team BMW 320i E36 19:55.203 + 19.438 9. Massimo Pigoli (I) Christy's Team BMW 320i E36 20:00.487 + 24.722 10. Stefano Bonello (I) AGS Motorsport Audi A4 Quattro 20:12.122 + 36.357 11. Gianluca Roda (I) Greyhound Motorsport Opel Vectra 16V 20:14.347 + 38.582 12. Guido Lucchetti (I) Nath Racing Audi A4 Quattro 20:27.442 + 51.667 13. Moreno Soli (I) Soli Racing Team Alfa Romeo 156 20:29.996 + 54.231 Dnf Sandro Sardelli (I) Team Isert BMW 320i E36 5 laps Dns Romana Bernardoni (I) Nordauto Engineering Alfa Romeo 156
Fastest lap: Naspetti, 1:37.095, average speed 150.53 kmh, on lap 3
EURO STC PROVISIONAL POINTS - AFTER 14 ROUNDS OUT OF 20
Drivers 1. Fabrizio Giovanardi 186 pts 2. Peter Kox 181 3. Gianni Morbidelli 159 4. Emanuele Naspetti 132 5. Nicola Larini 120
Teams 1. Nordauto Engineering 319 pts 2. CiBiEmme Engineering 293 3. JAS Engineering 181 4. AGS Motorsport 103 5. Christy's Team 86