The 2022 GT championship enters its final phase with the final season verdicts to be adjudicated. The closing round of the International GT Open in Barcelona and the 4 Hours of Portimão of the European Le Mans Series promise plenty of adrenalin, with Prancing Horse vehicles also among the title race contenders in China.
European Le Mans Series. No fewer than seven Ferraris will be on the track with a chance of success at the 4 Hours of Portimão, the final round of the series. In particular, in the LMGTE class, after the win at the 4 Hours of Spa, it will be the Kessel Racing team with Mikkel Jensen and Frederik Schandorff at the wheel, on this occasion flanked by Takeshi Kimura, who are most deeply involved in the title fight, some nine points shy of the leadership. Behind them is the Italian trio of Matteo Cressoni, Davide Rigon and Claudio Schiavoni of Iron Lynx. Also taking the start will be the all-female Iron Dames crew featuring Sarah Bovy, Michelle Gatting and Doriane Pin, the recently crowned Ferrari Challenge Europe champion in the Trofeo Pirelli category. Rinaldi Racing also field two cars with Diego Alessi, Nicolas Varrone and Pierre Ehret in the no. 32 Ferrari 488 GTE and Christian Hook, Fabrizio Crestani and Jeroen Bleekemolen in the no. 33. Finally, Spirit of Race will line up the trio of Duncan Cameron, Matthew Griffin and David Perel on the track, while JMW Motorsport will see Giacomo Pietrobelli, Matthew Payne and Sean Hudspeth in the no. 66 Ferrari. The race starts at 1 p.m. local time.
Michelin Le Mans Cup. The seventh and final round of the season will also feature the AF Corse-run no. 51 Ferrari on the starting grid, entrusted to the Japanese pairing Koizumi Hiroshi and Kei Cozzolino. The 110-minute race will kick off on Sunday 16 at 9 a.m. at the Algarve circuit.
International GT Open. The championship, as is traditional, will conclude at the Barcelona circuit, with the titles yet to be awarded. Three Ferraris will be involved at the weekend, with the Murat Cuhardaroglu-David Fumanelli (Kessel Racing) pairing leading the standings in the Pro Am class. The second Kessel Racing car will be on the track in the Am class driven by Stephen Earle and Erwin Zanotti, while Polish pairing Stanislaw Jedlinski-Krystian Korzeniowski will represent Olimp Racing. AF Corse will field two Ferraris: in the Am class Laurent de Meeus, paired with Johnny Mowlem, currently holds third place in the standings, while Willem Van der Vorm and Michele Rugolo will be involved in the Pro Am class. Race 1 starts on Saturday over the distance of 70 minutes, from 3:05 pm; Race 2 on Sunday (60 minutes) from 1:10 pm.
China Endurance Championship. The double-dater scheduled at the Ningbo International Speedpark hosts the final round of the CEC, the China Endurance Championship, with Harmony Racing as the main favourite. The trio of Alex Jiatong Liang, Charles Hon-Chio Leong and Alexandre Imperatori will be at the start aboard the no. 488 Ferrari 488 GT3 Evo 2020 that’s at the top of the standings.
Alexandre Imperatori: "We have a busy week ahead of us with two races in a row. There are still many points to be won. We are now in a good position to win the championship, but we are really only halfway there. We have to stay very focused this weekend and make sure we have a car that is as competitive as possible.”