39 drivers entered in the third Fia European Touring Car Cup

20.10.2007: 39 drivers entered in the third Fia European Touring Car Cup

The third running of the FIA European Touring Car Cup, that will take place next week at the Adria Raceway, Italy, has already met with a brilliant result: a new record in terms of participations.

39 drivers from 10 countries have entered the event and they are at the wheel of cars from 12 different manufacturers (see the final entry list attached) which equates to a 50 percent increase compared to the two previous editions.

25 of these competitors (again a new record) will fight for the FIA Super 2000 Cup and 9 for the FIA Super Production Cup.

Five other drivers have been accepted to compete in the new Super 1600 class and they will not be eligible for any of the two FIA Cups.

 

RUSSIA THE BEST REPRESENTED NATION

Nine National Sporting Authorities (ASN) will compete to succeed the British Motor Sports Association in the roll of honour of the FIA Touring Car Nations Cup, awarded to the ASN whose drivers have scored the highest number of points in the two races.

The best two cars entered by competitors belonging to the same ASN will be taken into consideration for the Nations Cup’s classification. The Russian Automobile Federation (RAF) is the best represented ASN in the event with 11 drivers: six in Super 2000 and five in Super Production.

GR ASIA LINE UP DANISH CHAMPION

UK-based GR Asia aim to repeat last year’s success at Estoril, where the team’s SEAT León cars claimed first and second in the Super 2000 Cup.

The outfit directed by Paul Ridgway entered Maurizio Ceresoli, their regular driver in the FIA World Touring Car Championship, and Michel Nykjær.

The latter is the freshly crowned Danish Touring Car champion having claimed the title for SEAT last week during the final round at Jyllands-Ringen. In the title fight Nykjær edged out a bunch of BMW drivers – former F1 star Magnussen, sportscar legend Nielsen and triple DTC champion Elgaard – halting the German manufacturers’ monopoly which had lasted for three years.

 

MERCEDES AND HONDA FROM SWEDEN

The FIA European Cup in Adria will mark the international debut of Tobias Johansson’s Mercedes C200. The German car, prepared by the independent MB Sport team according to Super 2000 technical specifications, has only raced in the Swedish Touring Car Championship so far.

Also from Sweden is Tomas Engström, one of the most experienced STCC competitors who is used to making international appearances during the season. Last year he was classified third in the FIA Super 2000 Cup at Estoril and two weeks ago he took part in the FIA World Touring Car Championship round at Monza.

 

A PORTUGUESE BMW FOR CAMPANIÇO

A former podium finisher in top-level international single seater categories like Formula Renault, Formula 3 and World Series, the 27-years old César Campaniço switched to touring cars at the beginning of the season and immediately emerged as one of the most competitive drivers in the new-born Portuguese Touring Car Championship.

He comes to Adria with high hopes, at the wheel of the very same BMW 320si run by the Sports & You team in which he claimed five PTCC victories.

 

GERMAN BROTHERS IN ARMS

The two Toyota Corolla cars entered by the TFS-Yaco Team will be driven by young brothers Philip and Charlie Geipel.

Philip, 21-years old, has just finished his second season in the Toyota, competing in the ADAC Procar’s Division 1. He also made occasional outings in the FIA World Touring Car Championship and participated in last year’s FIA Super 2000 Cup at Estoril.

Adria will mark his younger brother’s debut in the S2000 Corolla. Charlie, who is only 17, successfully completed his maiden season in the ADAC Procar, claiming three Division 2 wins in a Toyota Yaris.

 

TWO LACETTI CARS FOR CHEVROLET

Chevrolet will be represented in the FIA Super 2000 Cup by two Lacetti cars run by the Danish importer’s team and driven by Henrik Lundgaard and Swede Pontus Mörth.

They were both among the top drivers in this year’s Danish Touring Car Championship, claiming two victories apiece, the first ever for Chevrolet in Denmark.

The Danish contingent is completed by two top-level independent cars: Kristian Poulsen’s BMW 320si and Jens Reno Møller’s Honda Accord.

 

EMMET O’BRIEN IS BACK WITH A BMW

Irish youngster Emmet O’Brien returns to the FIA European Touring Car Cup after he finished as runner up to GR Asia team-mate Ryan Sharp in last year’s S2000 event.

In the first half of the current season O’Brien – 26 from Dublin – remained at GR Asia and competed in the FIA World Touring Car Championship at the wheel of a SEAT León. He has now reached a last minute agreement with the Denmark-based Poulsen Motorsport to race at Adria with the team’s second BMW 320si.

 

UPGRADE FOR GOLDEN MOTORS

In 2006 the Russian outfit Golden Motors ran two Super Production Honda Civic cars for Alexander Lvov and Andrey Smetsky, achieving important results as Lvov clinched first the Russian title and then the FIA Super Production Cup at Estoril.

For the current season team and drivers have upgraded to S2000 Honda Accord cars. After a one-off appearance in the FIA World Touring Car Championship round at Anderstorp, Lvov managed to win another Russian title, with Smetsky finishing as runner-up.

Therefore they must be regarded as serious contenders for the S2000 Cup.

 

THEY COME FROM THE EAST

Besides the large Russian contingent, two other competitors are coming from Eastern Europe.

33-years old Latvian Jānis Horeliks is one of the most successful drivers from the Baltic Touring Car Championship. Last year he was classified third in the FIA Super Production Cup driving a Honda Integra, while in the current season he has finished third in the Finnish Touring Car Championship with his new S2000 Honda Civic.

Michal Matěyovský is only 22 and one of the best prospects of Czech motor sport. Grown up in the local Škoda Octavia Cup, he is now ready for the international stage and will race in an S2000 Alfa Romeo 156 at Adria.

 

AUTOSPORT PROJECTS WITH AUDI AND FORD

Russia-based Sport-Garage will run two different types of cars in Adria’s FIA Super 2000 Cup: one Audi A4 and one Ford Focus.

The Audi will be in the hands of Alexander Lvov jr who, in spite of having the very same name, is not related to his fellow countryman driving for Golden Motors. Lvov jr was classified 8th in this year’s Russian Touring Car Championship.

His team mate, Yuriy Odud, will be in the Ford Focus, a former Hotfiel Sport machine that raced in the FIA World Touring Car Championship. Odud achieved 5th place in the 2007 RTCC.

 

FOUR ITALIANS IN THEIR HOME RACE

The Italian patrol in the FIA Super 2000 Cup is made up of five men: Maurizio Ceresoli in the GR Asia SEAT León and four other drivers all in BMW 320i cars.

Arsenio Corse’s Cesare Cremonesi, 37-years old, has only started racing in 2006, but in the current season he managed to grab the Italian Touring Cars Competition series title. Alessandro Canali (27) freshly crowned champion of the Italian Driver’s Trophy, was a last minute addition to the Zerocinque Motorsport’s line up.

Roberto Conte and Riccardo Bianco are both driving for Promotorsport Squadra Corse. The 42-year old Bianco spent the last two seasons racing in the Endurance Touring Cars Series with his team mate Conte. The latter – 56 from Rome – will be the oldest driver in Adria; 39 years is the difference between him and the youngest the 17-years old Charlie Geipel.

 

THE RUSSIANS WHO COME FROM GERMANY

Two of the Russian drivers have strong ties with Germany. Oleg Petrishin and Rustem Teregulov race with the German Engstler Motorsport team, owned by the experienced Franz Engstler who will be racing himself in the FIA World Touring Car Championship’s final meeting at Macau.

Both, Petrishin and Teregulov were regular competitors of the German ADAC Procar championship.

 

THE PRESIDENT OF SAN MARINO RACES AGAIN

Stefano Valli from San Marino will take part in his third FIA European Cup at the wheel of a BMW 320i run by the Zerocinque Motorsport team. He and Tomas Engström are the only drivers entered in Adria who have participated in the first two events in Vallelunga and Estoril.

In 2005 Valli – who is the president of FAMS, the National Sporting Authority of the small Republic of San Marino – competed in the Super 2000 cup, while last year he switched to the Super Production cup. Now he is back to the major class.

 

ITALY VS RUSSIA IN SUPER PRODUCTION

The battle for the FIA Super Production Cup will be fought between Italy and Russia.

Massimo Arduini in the Team GPS Honda Civic, Giulio Valentini in the GP Motorsport Alfa Romeo 147 (a disabled driver who is leading the Italian Super Production Trophy), and the Alessandro Ravello-Fabio Fabiani in two BMW 320i cars run by the Gruppo Piloti Forlivesi team.

The Russian contingent – that claimed the first two positions at Estoril in 2006 with Lvov and Sadredinov - line up five drivers; four of them have occupied the top-four positions in this year’s Russian Super Production Championship. Aleksey Basov and Nikolay Agapov in the Rostokino- Lada Honda Civic cars were classified first and third; they were split by Anton Markin who drives a Sum Tel Racing BMW 320i.

Dmitry Dobrovolskiy was fourth in the Aimol Racing Opel Astra Coupé; at Adria he will be joined by Arkadiy Pavlovskiy on his maiden appearance in an SP car after emerging in the Super 1600 class.

 

OFFICIAL WEBSITE WWW.FIAETCC.COM

Find further information, regulations, the drivers’ photos and detailed CVs on the official website www.fiaetcc.com

- Fabio Ravaioli -

Permanent-URL: http://www.automobilsport.com/fia-etcc-adria-raceway-fia-touring-car-gr-asia-russia-raf-asn-danish-champion-san-marino-president-stefano-valli-chevrolet-lada-campanico---29302.html

20.10.2007 / MaP

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