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    Double Ferrari podium on ALMS debut

    Dubai 12 febbraio 2022

    The first round of the 2021-2022 Asian Le Mans Series held on the Dubai circuit ended with podium finishes for the Ferraris of Rinaldi Racing and AF Corse in the GT3 class and Kessel Racing in the GT3 Pro-Am class. Davide Rigon, David Perel and Rino Mastronardi secured an excellent second place ahead of Conrad Grunewald, Louis Prette and Vincent Abril at the end of a very convincing race. The Kessel Racing crew, on the other hand, completed the scheduled four hours behind the Mercedes of SBS Automotive.

    In a very straightforward race, neutralised only by two Full Course Yellows, the Ferraris always occupied the podium positions and led the race for long stretches. Rinaldi Racing's 488 GT3 Evo 2020 and AF Corse's number 17 were among the leading lights in the GT3 class. After taking the lead with Grunewald, the AF Corse APM Monaco car lost it at the first stop when, due to an incorrect alignment at the start, it had to make a 10-second stop before the mechanics could perform the pit stop. At the wheel of the Rinaldi Racing unit, Mastronardi took advantage of the situation to build up a 15-second lead, an advantage he passed on to Perel. After the penalty, Prette produced an excellent comeback that put the Ferrari back in second even though, behind him, the McLaren of Inception Racing, with Barnicoat in the first of two stints, succeeded in moving ahead of the former Ferrari Challenge Trofeo Pirelli champion. Shortly after mid-race, the McLaren took the lead, getting the better of the Rinaldi Racing car. Then, at the end, another British car, this time from Optimum Motorsport, challenged Abril for the bottom step of the podium. However, the Frenchman managed to fend off his rivals' attacks, thus successfully completing his defence of third position.

    The second Ferrari of the Piacenza-based team, the number 51, had different goals, with world champion Alessandro Pier Guidi alternating with Victor Gomez and Francesco Piovanetti, twelfth at the finish. At the same time, the only Kessel Racing 488 GT3 Evo 2020 that started, crewed by Roman Ziemian, Francesco Zollo and Axcil Jefferies, completed the four hours in second place in the Pro-Am class. The trio performed excellently, with Jefferies, who knows the track inside out, particularly noteworthy as evidenced by his fastest lap, the second fasted in the GT3 class.