Galatasaray driver Alessandro Pier Guidi topped the times on the final day of Superleague Formula testing at Vallelunga yesterday – setting the fastest time of the week for the football-themed motor racing championship.
The third and final day of testing for the Superleague Formula teams at Vallelunga brought slightly cooler weather in the early morning and a chance to take another step forward. With all eyes on the first race of this nascent championship at Donington Park in just 23 days, the pressure is on for the teams and drivers to understand how to wring the most out of these identical 750hp, V-12 powered machines.
Pier Guidi headed off the pack closely followed by Davide Rigon on board Borussia Dortmund, Enrico Toccacelo in the AS Roma car and day on! e and two pacesetter, Robert Doornbos in the AC Milan car.
With a total of nine cars starting the three day test, only eight remained on the final day with the Anderlecht car retiring from the test following a fire on Thursday morning. The cause was a disconnected fuel line on the Astromega–run car.On a happier note, the remaining cars all posted significant improvements with drivers reporting extremely favourably on the three days.Said Robert Doornbos, AC Milan; “It has been a very encouraging three days. We came here with the Barcelona test under our belts and have been working on improving set up. The car feels good, the grip is good and we have performed well in these very hot conditions. I’m really looking forward to getting to Donington for the test later in the month. I think we are looking strong.”Local hero, Enrico Toccacelo, was also very enthusiastic with his first tas! te of the car. Driving for his beloved AS Roma football club, Toccacelo expects to be a real force at Donington. “It has been a great three days,” he confirmed. “I really enjoyed the car. There is lots of downforce, the power to brakes is very impressive – 15 inch carbon brakes! The car is also very quick, we were doing 290kms down the straight here at Vallelunga which is impressive. It is quite a big car so it does feel heavy in the slow corners, but all in all I am really pleased. I have never been to Donington, but after today I feel we should be competitive.”Alessandro Pier Guidi, Galatasaray – “We have really improved every day here in Vallelunga. We have been able to start concentrating on different set ups and can now identify the main areas to achieve the best out of the car. This is a big step from the test at Barcelona where we were really shaking the car down. W! e did have some problems with oil consumption, but we have worked on this and certainly improved the situation. I really enjoy driving this car. The braking is incredible and the grip is very good. My gut feeling is that this is a really good car and we are now in great shape for the first race at Donington.”Daniel La Rosa in the Olympiacos car had very similar feedback. The team had also complained of excessive oil consumption at the beginning of the test, but had solved the problem and the driver could hardly mask his enthusiasm for the car.“What a lot of fun it is to drive,” he commented. “The braking is really good and late braking and great acceleration will make for exciting racing. We are all really looking forward to the ultimate test at Donington. This has been a good test and we are feeling strong.”
Day 3 times – all timings are provisionalP /Team /Laps /Time1 Galatasaray, Scuderia Playteam Sarafree 35 1:22.7982 Borussia Dortmund, Zakspeed 21 1:22.8243 AS Roma, Fisichella 41 1:22.9334 AC Milan, Scuderia Playteam Sarafree 40 1:23.2185 Flamengo, Astromega 23 1:24.2376 FC Basel, GU Racing 27 1:24.9827 Olympiacos, GU Racing 14 1:26.2238 Glasgow Rangers, Team West Tec 13 1:31.112
The complete Superleague Formula calendar includes Donington Park (August 30-31), Nurburgring (September 20-21), Zolder (October 4-5), Estoril (October 18-19), Vallelunga (November 1-2) and Jerez (November 22-23)