Image credit: BlancpainGT.
Ferrari made its mark on the Blancpain Endurance Series right from the opening round in Monza. The Maranello customer teams actually monopolised the podium in two of the three categories that make up the championship, which featured no less than 58 cars representing eleven different motor manufacturers.
In the Pro-Am class, which Ferrari customers also dominated last year, the win went to the Rinaldi Racing 458 Italia GT3, crewed by Norbert Siedler and Rinat Salikhov, who also managed to win the race outright. First past the chequered flag was actually a Lamborghini from the Pro class, but it was disqualified. The Ferrari men got the better of the Belgian Club Team Audi (Vanthoor-Frijns-Vernay,) who took the Pro win. Behind the green Rinaldi Racing car in the Pro-Am category came the AF Corse number 51 Ferrari, in the hands of Duncan Cameron and Matt Griffin, who on the Saturday were at Silverstone in the ELMS race before flying over to Monza just in time for qualifying. It makes their second place even more noteworthy therefore. The third step of the podium was home to Kessel Racing’s number 11 Ferrari, driven by Michael Broniszewski, Michael Lyons and Alessandro Bonacini.
While the number 11 458 finished third, in the Am category the 111 car did better, taking the win thanks to Stephen Earle, Marco Zanuttini and Liam Talbot, the latter having come all the way from Australia for the Monza opening round. Second place went to the Akka ASP number 16 Ferrari with the French pairing of Anthony Pons and, from France’s glorious footballing past, Fabien Barthez. Rounding off the Ferrari triple in the Am class too was Glorax Racing’s 25 car, driven by Rino Mastronardi, Andrey Birzhin and Fabio Mancini. The next round of the Blancpain Endurance Series takes place at Silverstone on 23 and 24 May.