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Winning debut for AF Corse in Pro-Am at Magny-Cours

Magny-Cours 09 May 2021

A winning start in the 2021 GT World Challenge Europe powered by AWS Sprint Cup for Andrea Bertolini and Louis Machiels in Pro-Am class at the night race held on the Nevers Magny-Cours circuit. In Silver class, a fine fourth place for the Rinaldi Racing-run Ferrari, while the Sky Tempesta Racing entry posted eighth.

Pro-Am. The AF Corse pairing produced a superb performance, with the Belgian committed to clawing back positions in the opening stint, after being forced to start from the final grid position due to problems in qualifying. Machiels staged a very effective comeback which saw him take the leadership among the Pro-Am crews, midway through his stint. After a Full Course Yellow phase around the 24-minute mark, the five-time class champion handed over the 488 GT3 Evo 2020 wheel to team-mate Andrea Bertolini. From that point on, the Italian managed the pace over the remaining minutes to take the victory spoils at the chequered flag.

Silver. Positive debut for Rinaldi Racing's 488 GT3 Evo 2020 in the Silver Cup, thanks to a fourth place earned by Benjamin Hites and Patrick Kujala, although Chris Froggatt and Giorgio Roda’s race proved to be a more laboured affair. Starting from second place in the class and fourth overall, Kujala handled the car well, limiting the gap from the competitors ahead, while Froggatt, sixth in the class and twelfth overall, was having to deal with De Pauw's Bentley. Despite obvious damage to the rear-end, the reigning Pro-Am class champion was nonetheless able to defend his position tenaciously. Midway through the race, after the period of Full Course Yellow, Kujala handed over to Hites while Froggatt stayed out, taking advantage of his adversaries’ pit-stops to grab the lead. The Sky Tempesta Racing driver swapped with Roda with 25 minutes left on the clock. The two replacements proved less effective than their team-mates and slipped several places down the order. At the finish-line, Hites concluded the sixty-minute race in fourth position, with Roda in eighth.