Opening round in Monza on weekend of April 23 and 2447 cars on grid22 teams and 70 drivers on track
Monza will see 47 Huracán LP 620-2 cars lining up for the opening round of the Lamborghini Blancpain Super Trofeo Europe this coming weekend. Following the success of the last season, this is a record grid for the first of six double rounds in the eighth year of the single-marque series. With 22 teams and 70 drivers, the Monza venue is shared with the prestigious Blancpain GT Series Endurance Cup.
Apart from the impressive entry figures, the series is also focused on first class venues. The international calendar, which includes stops in Silverstone, Paul Ricard, Spa-Francorchamps (for the 24 Hours) and Nürburgring, reaches its climax in Valencia with the fourth edition of the World Final scheduled at the beginning of December. The Asia and North America Series will also converge on the Spanish track: both series start in May, each of which will include a race on a city circuit (in Kuala Lumpur and the new “street race” in Boston).
Giorgio Sanna, head of Lamborghini Motorsport, is very pleased at the record-breaking grid and explains: "We are opening the 2016 season of the Lamborghini Blancpain Super Trofeo with important participation numbers, which indicate a growing trend in terms of interest in our sports programs. As the number of cars has increased, we have also improved the organizational structure on track to support customer teams, and provide a service that reflects the standards of Lamborghini.”
The 2016 Lamborghini Blancpain Super Trofeo Europe has the same two-race format as in past years (each race lasts 50 minutes with a mandatory pit-stop and two 15-minute qualifying sessions to define the starting grid), but there are also changes: first and foremost is the introduction of the new Lamborghini Cup, created for less experienced drivers, which is added to the existing PRO, PRO-AM and AM classes.
The spotlight is also turned on new arrivals with seven debuting teams: Attempto Racing, Dörr Motorsport, FFF Racing Team, GDL Motorsport, GT3 Poland, MN Development and Van der Horst Motorsport. In addition Petri Corse is making a return: it won the team title in 2009 and comes onto the starting line with an exceptional name, that of former F1 driver Nicola Larini.
Other teams include Bonaldi Motorsport, which in 2015 won the team and PRO titles; the latter was gained by the Finnish youngster Patrick Kujala, who is now a driver in the GT3 Junior Program of Lamborghini Squadra Corse and, for the occasion, he will be alternating with the Swiss Adrian Amstutz for the Italian team. Reigning PRO-AM champion Loris Spinelli is expected to be flying the colors of Antonelli Motorsport, promoted to a higher class, together with Enrico Fulgenzi. Among the exciting debuts is that of pro driver Vito Postiglione, who won the Italian GT title in 2013 and will be entering with with Imperiale Racing. With the same team there will be also Simone Pellegrinelli, 2014 AM class champion.
There are also many young drivers: from the dutch Rik Breukers, aged 17 at his debut with GDL Motorsport, to the Australian rookie Ben Gersekowski, aged 23, racing with Leipert Motorsport, and the 22-year old English driver Josh Webster, entering alongside Austrian Christoph Zöchling in a Konrad Motorsport car. Another new entry is Andrea Fontana, born in 1996, racing with 19-year old Lorenzo Veglia in Antonelli Motorsport’s Huracán. Nicola De Marco, aged 25, and Fabrizio Del Monte form one of the PRO crews of the Orange 1 Team Lazarus; Andrea Ceccato and the german Kenneth Kröpfl will drive the other Huracán of the Orange1 Team Lazarus. The 18-year old Croatian, Martin Kodric, after debuting last year in Sebring, has been confirmed among the ranks of Bonaldi Motorsport while Raton Racing fields the Dane Dennis Lind, aged 23. The Swiss Alain Valente, aged 19, shares the wheel of a Sportec Motorsport car with Nicolas Stürzinger.
Two ladies will also be on the grid: the Belgian Sarah Bovy, who makes her debut in the Lamborghini Blancpain Super Trofeo Europe and will be alternating behind the wheel with Ben Gersekowski. The Portuguese Carina Lima will be participating for the third time in the single-make series from Sant’Agata, with Andrea Palma in an Imperiale Racing car.
Three are the cars fielded by Vincenzo Sospiri Racing, one with the duo composed by Kei Francesco Cozzolino, protagonist in the 2015 season, and Masato Matsushita. Other teams on the start line are Artline Team Georgia, Automobile Tricolore; Autovitesse, Toro Loco and Veloso Motorsport.
The first round of Monza will also see the launch of a new media partnership between Lamborghini Squadra Corse and Radio Monte Carlo. The prestigious broadcaster from Principato di Monaco, official partner of Lamborghini Blancpain Super Trofeo Europe, will offer a dedicated radio coverage, including interviews and main highlights, before and after all the events of the European Series.
Regarding TV coverage, both Monza races are going to be broadcasted live in Italy by Nuvolari TV, available free-to-air on channel 61 of the DTT, on April 23 at 3.10 p.m. and on April 24 at 1.05 p.m. You can also follow the races in live streaming on the web site of Lamborghini Squadra Corse: http://squadracorse.lamborghini.com/en/live . You can also relive the emotions of each race on the official YouTube channel of Automobili Lamborghini: http://www.youtube.com/lamborghini .