03.11.2021 – A weekend as the main protagonists. Imperiale Racing won the LB Cup title with Hans Fabri (NL) in the closing round of the Lamborghini Super Trofeo Europe 2021 in Misano and ended second the Italian GT Endurance 2021 Championship in Monza with Alberto di Folco (ITA), Andrea Amici (ITA) and Stuart Middleton (GB). The #63 lineup has been the ruler of the weekend setting the pole position, the fastest lap of the race and led the pack for three-thirds of the race, but the rain that fell in the finale shuffled the cards and prevented the Mirandola-based team from taking the deserved win. The AM podium went to Antoine Bottiroli (CH), Paul August (LT) and Jaromir Jirik (CZ), which ended second in the category.
In Misano, the weekend has been valid as the closing round of the Lamborghini Super Trofeo Europe and World Final. Hans Fabri put in one of his best performances ever and claimed the win he has been chasing for several seasons. In qualifying, the Dutch driver placed the #88 Lamborghini Huracàn Super Trofeo Evo in P4 in Q1 and P3 in Q2, which confirmed he had the speed to fight for the title. Fabri secured a crucial P3 ending race one again on the podium in this very successful season. In race two the Imperiale Racing’s driver did not put a foot wrong and ran a wise race thinking about the classification: the fourth place earned him the final win of LB Cup.
At the same time, Imperiale Racing competed also in Monza’s title decider of the Italian GT Endurance 2021 championship. The team fielded two super-competitive Lamborghini Huracàn GT3 Evo, which allowed the drivers to unleash their full potential. This winning cocktail was underlined by a stunning qualifying session that saw the #63 car on top of the classification. In Q1 Middleton completed his best lap in 1’47.695s, that was the second quickest time, in Q2 Amici was third in 1’48.150s, not far from the virtual front row, while Di Folco was the quickest of Q3 in 1’46.657s. These laps earned Imperiale Racing’s drivers the pole position with a combined time of 5’22.502s. The #19 car was second of AM: Bottiroli ran a strong Q1 posting the eighth fastest time overall, which was the first of AM in 1’48.564. In Q2, August completed his best lap in 1’51.639s, which was the second of AM, as did Jirik in Q3 (1’50.554s).
Amici started the race in the #63 car and managed the start very well, keeping the position for the whole stint before handing the car over to Middleton. The Brit drove the car during the middle stint and increased the gap to his rivals. In the closing hour, Di Folco pulled away posting also the fastest lap of the race. He eventually built more than 30s of margin. When 20 minutes were still to go, rain started to fall on the circuit and the first positions were reshuffled. Di Folco kept the lead, but was mathematically second in the championship. The Imperiale Racing’s driver could have continued on with the slick tyres, as he was perfectly at ease with the low grip but the team decided to wear rain tyres as the rain seemed to be falling more intensely. The rain unfortunately was less than expected and the situation did not change: Di Folco ended second, which did not allow him to take the title. The #63 lineup ended the championship in second place.
The #19 car put in an effective race and a good progression by all the drivers. Bottiroli kicked off the race with a good stint in which he closed the gap to the rivals lap after lap. August did the same in the second stint and Jirik drove through the closing hour that was trickier due to the rain. They ended second, repeating the great result obtained in Vallelunga.
Luca Del Grosso (Imperiale Racing, Team Manager):
“We had a strong weekend, we were the quickest on track in Monza and would have deserved the win. When it started to rain we made up our mind, we knew the rain could have intensified and we gambled on the rains. In the closing laps the track did not get very wet, but the situation would have not allowed us to win anyway. The rule of discards would have penalized our car anyway, as we would have needed to win and have at least one car before our direct rivals. I want to congratulate Andrea, Alberto and Stuart for managing a great weekend and a strong race, thanks also to all our engineers and staff that delivered them a super-car. My compliments go also to Paul, Antoine and Jaromir, that, despite joining in in the middle of the season they found a great feeling and claimed two AM podiums. We are disappointed though, as we were once again very close to the final win. I cannot hide the disappointment especially considering our performance over the whole championship. We pushed when that was required and reacted well to the most complicated moments. We proved to be a united and resolute team. This is motorsport and we always need to look forward with pride.
Finally, I want to congratulate Hans and our guys present in Misano. The season of the Super Trofeo Lamborghini Europe has been really positive and winning the LB Cup has been a great result for all of us”.