After their splendid triumphs in the 8 Hours of Portimão, the Ferraris arrive at Monza for round three of the FIA World Endurance Championship on top of all the LMGTE Pro and Am class standings.
Ten 488 GTEs will line up, hoping to climb the top step of the podium in front of their home crowd, in attendance at a World Championship race for the first time since the start of the pandemic.
LMGTE Pro. Fresh from their one-two in Portugal, the two AF Corse 488 GTEs arrive at Monza ambitious for victory and with the duo of Alessandro Pier Guidi and James Calado topping the standings, six points ahead of their nearest rivals. “At last, the WEC is coming to Italy and racing in front of our public gives us Ferrari drivers special motivation,” commented the Italian. “We can be successful because the 488 GTE is well suited to this track. We have prepared for the race in the simulator and will work on the details in free practice. We will have to be able to find a good balance between downforce and straight-line speed. We arrive on top of the standings, and I am confident we will still be there at the end of the six hours”. With Daniel Serra and Miguel Molina in second place, the second AF Corse car is also gunning for victory to close the 14-point gap to the top. The pair in car #52 have two podium finishes to their name in the first two races of the season.
LMGTE Am. After celebrating their first win in the FIA WEC, Roberto Lacorte, Giorgio Sernagiotto, and Antonio Fuoco will defend Cetilar Racing’s top spot in the LMGTE Am standings from the assaults of AF Corse 488 GTE #54, crewed by Thomas Flohr, Giancarlo Fisichella and Francesco Castellacci. With third place in the Algarve, the Italo-Swiss crew was back on the podium after finishing runners-up at the 2019 edition of the 1000 Miles of Sebring. The Piacenza-based team will field two more cars at Monza. The first, car #83, will be driven by François Perrodo, Nicklas Nielsen and Alessio Rovera, winners of the opening round at Spa-Francorchamps. Christoph Ulrich, Simon Mann and Toni Vilander will take the hot seat of the second, car #61. On the theme of seasonal debuts in the WEC, we should mention the Ferraris of Rinaldi Racing and Inception Racing. The German and British teams will use the Monza event to prepare for the upcoming 24 Hours of Le Mans. The former will deploy Pierre Ehret, Christian Hook and Jeroen Bleekemolen, while Brendan Iribe, Ollie Millroy and Ben Barnicoat will debut in the 488 GTE #71. Again, Iron Lynx will field two cars, with a change in the “Iron Dames” line-up: Sarah Bovy from Belgium will replace Manuela Gostner alongside Michelle Gatting and Rahel Frey, while the crew of #60 remains unchanged, with Claudio Schiavoni, Andrea Piccini and Matteo Cressoni.
History. The Autodromo Nazionale di Monza will welcome a WEC race for the first time, even though the Lombard circuit and endurance racing go back many years. The circuit hosted the famous 1000 Kilometres of Monza, where Ferrari won several victories. Among them, we should mention the 1967 edition, when the Prancing Horse won with the 330 P4 of Lorenzo Bandini and Chris Amon, participants in the legendary clean sweep at the 24 Hours of Daytona a few months before. From 1965 until 1970, this race was run on the Brianza circuit’s full track, which at the time included the high-speed ring – with the fearsome banking – and measured 10.1 kilometres.
Programme. The first ninety-minute free practice session will kick off this afternoon at 3:30pm local time. Then on Saturday, the drivers will participate in the second and third non-official practice sessions at 9:30am and 2pm. Qualifying for LMGTE Pro and Am class cars will take place from 6pm to 6.10pm. However, on Sunday, the race will start at 12pm and finish six hours later.