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    Regrets and victory for Ferrari at Indianapolis 8 Hours

    Indianapolis 18 ottobre 2021

    It was a bitter end for the two Ferraris entered in the Pro class, who saw an important result well within their grasp thwarted by unfortunate incidents in the final stages of the Indianapolis 8 Hours. The no. 61 Ferrari 488 GT3 Evo 2020 of Jean-Claude Saada, Conor Grunewald and Mark Kvamme however secured another class win for Ferrari at the Indianapolis 8 Hour contest, enjoying a largely trouble-free run as the sole entrant in the Am category. The win marks the second win for Ferrari at the event after Squadra Corse took the Pro/Am category win in 2020, the first time the event was held at the famed Indianapolis circuit.  Both entries in the Pro category, however, suffered late-race misfortune as on-track incidents spoiled the otherwise excellent pace of both cars.

    Pro. The no. 51 Ferrari of Alessandro Pier Guidi, Nicklas Nielsen and Côme Ledogar came home fourth in the Overall category after a disappointing second half of the 8 hour contest.  Already the GT World Challenge Europe Endurance Cup champions, the trio hoped to score valuable points in the Intercontinental GT Challenge, but those aspirations took a hit when Nicklas Nielsen made contact with a slower running GT4 car, earning a penalty in the process.  From there, some timely pit stops and caution periods brought the car back into contention, but the damage affected the car’s outright pace and limited the final result.  The weekend of the 71 Ferrari, meanwhile ended in heartbreak as an on-track incident with an hour to go forced the immediate retirement of the car from the lead of the race.  The trio of Callum Ilott, Antonio Fuoco and Alessio Rovera had a wild race as varying pit strategies brought them to the front in the closing hours.  Despite immense pressure from the Audi behind, Ilott held onto the lead and was beginning to build a gap when the incident occurred. 

    Am. With no other cars in the category, the drivers of the no. 61 Ferrari 488 GT3 Evo 2020 were able to take a strategy that focused on risk mitigation.  After starting the race with Saada behind the wheel, he and his season-long co-driver Conrad Grunewald alternated efforts through the first three hours.  From there, Mark Kvamme took several stints along with the other two, but it was ultimately Grunewald behind the wheel to take the checkered flag, finishing first in the Am category and 16th overall.  The win marked the first ever win for Saada in an endurance race and served as a cherry at the top of an excellent season for him in GT World Challenge Americas competition.