24.05.2021 – Imperiale Racing third at the end of the first round of the Italian GT Endurance 2021 Championship that has been run at the Circuit of Pergusa, Sicily, last weekend.

The Mirandola-based team has been among the front runners with the Lamborghini Huracàn GT3 Evo driven by Alberto Di Folco (ITA), Andrea Amici (ITA) and Stuart Middleton (GB), that proudly brought the #63 on track. Despite never competing on this track before, Imperiale Racing defined a very effective setup that allowed the drivers to show their potential and fight for the victory.

Excitement in qualifying. In Q1 Amici posted a solid 1’34.886s, which was the second fastest time overall, while Middleton put in a great performance in Q2 and set the best time of the session in 1’34.083s. Di Folco was penalized in Q3 for driving outside the track limits and this prevented him from putting together his theoretical best lap, but the ninth time he set allowed the trio to qualify in P4 with a combined time of 4’45.370s.

Di Folco drove the first stint resolute to bounce back from the unlucky qualifying. The driver from Rome put all his grit on track and kept himself in the fight for the podium for the whole stint. Di Folco pitted in P3 handing the car over to Middleton. The British driver inherited P2 when the #15 BMW retired and he gained the lead of the race at the restart after the safety car neutralization, building a margin that reached nearly 20s. A second safety car neutralized all the margins right at the moment when the Stewards handed Imperiale Racing’s car a 5s time penalty for overtaking under yellow flags. Amici joined the race for the closing stint in P2 and focused on building a margin big enough to get P2. He crossed the finish line close to the leader, but the gap was not enough and the Imperiale Racing’s trio ended third by just 0.6s.

Luca Del Grosso (Team Manager):
“A deserved podium rewarded the grit of the drivers and all the work done by the team to deliver them a top car. We certainly had the potential to win, but Endurance races are complex, full of unknowns and I have to say that we have reasons to be happy. We did not know the track, Andrea, Alberto and Stuart never raced together before, but they showed they have what it takes to do great things. We constantly had a strong pace and our performance on the single lap was also great: we head back home from Pergusa knowing that we can be successful. Things would have been different without the penalty, but we like looking forward carrying over all the positive things we have done on track this weekend”

Imperiale Racing will be back in the Italian GT Endurance Championship on July 2-4th at the International Circuit of Mugello.

Drivers’ classification | CIGT Endurance
1. Drudi-Ferrari-Agostini (Audi) pt. 20; 2. Fisichella-Gai-Zamperi (Ferrari) pt. 15; 3. Amici-Di Folco-Middleton (Lamborghini) pt. 12; 4. Schreiner-Hudspeth-Fuoco (Ferrari) pt. 7; 5. Earle-Perel (Ferrari) pt. 6