At the end of an intense and thrilling 24 Hours of Spa-Francorchamps, the five Ferrari 488 GT3 Evo 2020s competing in the great Ardennes classic claimed two victories and one podium place. The Maranello marque was the only one to see all its cars cross the finish line in the GT World Challenge Europe powered by AWS flagship race held in front of over 73,000 spectators. After celebrating Fuoco-Rigon-Serra’s third place in the Pro class, the Belgian public applauded a first GT race win for the Iron Dames Frey-Bovy-Gatting-Pin in the Gold Cup and Bertolini-Machiels-Costantini-Rovera’s triumph in the Pro-Am.
Pro. The two Iron Lynx Ferraris were consistently in the top positions, but in the final hours, the number 51 and 71 fell away from a chance to fight for victory. Antonio Fuoco, Davide Rigon and Daniel Serra in the 488 GT3 Evo 2020, were hampered by a drive-through for a Full Course Yellow infringement in the early morning and a prolonged stop in the final stages. This left them on the bottom step of the podium, which Antonio Fuoco strenuously defended from the assaults of the number 55 Mercedes. Crossing the line in second place at the sixth hour and fourth at the twelfth hour, the number 71 crew, who arrived at Spa on top of the standings, nonetheless earned vital championship points. Teammates James Calado, Nicklas Nielsen and Miguel Molina closed in ninth. Leading the race after sixteen hours, the number 51 drivers saw any hopes of glory dashed by a puncture that forced their 488 GT3 Evo 2020 to make a problematic pit stop with less than two hours to go.
Gold Cup. The Ferrari of Doriane Pin, Michelle Gatting, Rahel Frey and Sarah Bovy secured a historic victory, the first by an all-female crew in GT racing. The Iron Dames held first place from the twelfth hour onwards, finishing the Belgian marathon in eighteenth overall. An achievement they had pursued with determination and courage since the project officially began in 2019. In this class, AF Corse’s 488 GT3 Evo 2020 crewed by Hugo Delacour, Cedric Sbirrazzuoli, Alessandro Balzan and David Perel crossed the line in seventh.
Pro-Am Cup. Andrea Bertolini, Louis Machiels, Stefano Costantini and Alessio Rovera secured a great win in the AF Corse 488 GT3 Evo 2020. Setting off from the pit lane due to a problem a few minutes before what should have been a start from pole, the quartet staged a magnificent comeback, also embellished by Alessio Rovera, who turned in the race’s fastest lap overall. This was Andrea Bertolini’s fifth victory in the Belgian classic, the third won alongside Louis Machiels.
Standings. Thanks to the extra points awarded by this race, the Endurance Cup standings changed, with the race-winning crew – Marciello-Gounon-Juncadella in Mercedes – leading on seventy-nine points, eleven more than the trio of Serra, Rigon and Fuoco. In the Gold Cup, the Iron Dames moved top on sixty-seven points, while in the Pro-Am class, Bertolini, Machiels and Costantini reduced the gap to the solitary leader Dominik Baumann to eight points.
Appointments. The eighth and penultimate round of the GT World Challenge Europe powered by AWS season will run at Hockenheim in Germany from 2 to 4 September.