Cool Racing wins the first Italian round of the calendar

Cool Racing wins the first Italian round of the calendar

14.05.2022: A thrilling 110-minute race on the Michelin Le Mans Cup return to Imola had everyone on the edge of their seat from the start until the chequered flag. The race was interrupted by three Safety Car periods and four Full Course Yellows but when the cars we


A thrilling 110-minute race on the Michelin Le Mans Cup return to Imola had everyone on the edge of their seat from the start until the chequered flag.  The race was interrupted by three Safety Car periods and four Full Course Yellows but when the cars went racing there were incidents and overtaking at almost every turn.



The no37 CD Sport Ligier of Adam Eteki took the chequered flag, just ahead of Malthe Jakobsen in the no69 Cool Racing Ligier but a last lap penalty for abusing track limits was given to the no37 car, which dropped Eteki and Fabien Michal down to 6thin the final classification and promoted the no69 Ligier of Jakobsen and Maurice Smith to the top step of the podium.



The no44 GMB Motorsport Honda NSX finished over 11 seconds ahead of the rest of the GT3 field to take the class win, and the championship lead, for Gustav Birch and Jens Moller.



The H24 Racing hydrogen powered car with Stephane Richelmi at the wheel, completed the race distance, a major milestone in the development of the car.Richelmi completed 38 laps and finished in 32nd place at the chequered flag.







LMP3





    ·Weather was sunny with the air temperature at 29 degrees Celsius and track temperature at 44 degrees Celsius.


    ·The start was clean with all of the cars making it through the first chicane with Jerome De Sadeleer in the no29 leading from pole position in the no29 MV2S Forestier Racing Ligier.


    ·There was contact at Turn 7 with the no33 Team Virage Ligier of Rob Hodes ending up in the gravel after a coming together of several cars at the corner. The no40 Graff Racing Ligier needed a new radiator hose after damage caused a major fluid leak.


    ·The SAFETY CAR was deployed to recover the no33 Ligier from the gravel.The marshals had to take a while to clean the track of gravel.


    ·After 15 minutes the SAFETY CAR was withdrawn, and the race went GREEN.


    ·The no29 Ligier was being chased by the no37 CD Sport Ligier of Fabien Michal, with the no11 WTM Racing Ligier of Leo Weiss in third place with 1.8 seconds covering the three cars.


    ·Weiss passes Michal for second place at Turn 2 on lap 12.


    ·The second SAFETY CAR was deployed with 1 hour and 17 minutes left on clock when the no6 ANS Motorsport Ligier of Jonathan Brossard stopped in the middle of the track at Turn 7. The Ligier caused several cars to go off in avoidance prior to the Safety Car being deployed.


    ·The race went back to GREEN nine minutes later but the leading no29 MV2S Ligier of Jerome de Sadeleer spun at the final corner and collected the closely following no11 WTM Racing Ligier of Leo Weiss, putting both cars into retirement and bringing the SAFETY CAR back out for a third time.


    ·With 45 minutes of racing completed the teams started to bring in their cars for the mandatory pitstops while the Safety Car circulated.Reiter Engineering did this just before the Safety Car was deployed and brought Freddie Hunt into the pitlane, who had been running fourth, allowing Mads Siljehaug to rejoin in the lead.


    ·After 12 minutes the SAFETY CAR returned to the pits and the race went GREEN.


    ·Siljehaug was leading in the no76 Reiter Engineering Ligier from Adam Eteki in the no37 CD Sport Ligier and Malthe Jakobsen in the no69 Cool Racing Ligier.


    ·The no73 TS Corse Duqueine pulled off the track at T18 and the race was put under FULL COURSE YELLOWS to recover the stranded car.


    ·With 39 minutes of the race left the race went GREEN.


    ·Another FCY period was declared 10 minutes later to recover a stranded car, which only lasted 2 minutes before racing resumed in earnest.


    ·The no37 Ligier of Eteki was chasing Siljehaug’s no76 Ligier hard and took the lead at Turn 8 with 21 minutes of the race remaining.


    ·On the next lap Siljehaug dropped to third as Jakobsen took second at T1 just as another FCY was declared to recover the no72 Team Virage Ligier that had stopped at the same corner.


    ·Again, it was just two minutes before the race went GREEN again.


    ·The no32 United Autosports Ligier of Andy Meyrick moved up to third ahead of Colin Noble in the no7 Nielsen Racing Ligier.


    ·The no7 Ligier was served with a Drive Through penalty for abusing track limits which dropped Noble back to 8th.



    ·With 9 minutes to go to the chequered flag disaster struck the no32 United Autosports Ligier as a rear left puncture pitched Meyrick’s Ligier into the gravel trap at T6, bringing out another FCY period.


    ·Once again, the marshals worked tirelessly, and the car was recovered behind the barriers with five minutes of racing left on the clock.


    ·The no37 CD Sport Ligier was leading by 2.1 seconds from the no69 Cool Racing Ligier, with Jakobsen trying to close the gap to Eteki as they both negotiated the traffic.


    ·At the chequered flag the no37 Ligier crossed the line first, but a Track Limits violation was handed down as a 30 second time penalty dropping the car down to 6thplace.



    ·Malthe Jakobsen and Maurice Smith celebrated their victory on the podium with the no23 United Autosports Ligier of John Schauerman and Wayne Boyd in second and the no22 United Autosports Ligier of Andres Latorre Canon and Garnet Patterson in third.






GT3



    ·The start saw the no44 GMB Motorsport Honda NSX of Jen Moller get ahead of the pole position car the no46 Ebimotors Porsche 911 GT3 R of Emanuele Busnelli on the opening lap.



    ·After the first SAFETY CAR period the no44 Honda and no46 Porsche were battling hard for the lead, while the third placed no99 Bullitt Racing Aston Martin Vantage GT3 of Stephen Pattrick was closing up.



    ·The Aston Martin dropped back to 4thafter it was clipped into a spin by the no31 AF Corse Ligier of Kriton Lentoudis, Stephen Pattrick quickly recovering to get back into the race.



    ·The no46 Porsche dropped down the order when Busnelli was forced to take avoiding action at T7 when the stranded no6 ANS Motorsport Ligier was sitting in the middle of the track. This dropped the Porsche back to 4thbehind the no99 Aston Martin as the SAFETY CAR was deployed.



    ·After the pitstops Gustav Birch was holding a comfortable lead in the no44 GMB Motorsport Honda NSX with the no46 Ebimotors Porsche of Fabio Babini back up to 2nd.



    ·However, Theo Nouet in the no99 Bullitt Racing Aston Martin was catching the Porsche and went up to second place with 30 minutes of the race remining.



    ·At the chequered flag the no44 GMB Motorsport Honda NSX was 11.1 seconds ahead of the no99 Bullitt Racing Aston Martin Vantage, with the no46 Ebimotors Porsche 911 in third place 21 seconds behind the leading car.






The next round of the 2022 Michelin Le Mans Cup will be the Road to Le Mans, with the first race on Thursday 9 June and the second race on Saturday 11 June.





CLICK HERE for the provisional result from Round 2 of the 2022 Michelin Le Mans Cup at Imola.




Malthe Jakobsen - #69 Cool Racing Ligier JS P320-Nissan:
“It's really, really nice thing to start the weekend like this. Now we are competing in both ELMS and Le Mans Cup. So, it's almost a perfect weekend to start winning the race on Saturday today, and then we still have the race tomorrow. It was a really difficult race as well out there. A lot of traffic to manage and read a lot of Full Course Yellows and Safety Cars. So, I guess it must have been fun to watch because there was a lot of action. But we ended up winning, so I'm really happy. And the team are as well.”



Maurice Smith - #69 Cool Racing Ligier JS P320-Nissa
n: “It was it was an awesome race. It was a race of attrition; staying on track was very important, staying out of the gravel and avoiding other cars because it was very congested. So that was in our game plan. I think Malthe did a great job, and the team did a fantastic job preparing the car. And in the in the end, we had the least amount of mistakes.”

 

 

Jens Moller #44 GMB Motorsport Honda NSX GT3: “It was a sorry to say it was a kind of a casino in the first stint. I was starting in the car and we had so many safety cars, it was not easy to, to come down because the slowest the LMP3 cars were actually slower than I was in the front of the GT row. So, I was struggling, and especially with the BoP we had for this race, our top speed was very, very slow.



“So, I needed to fight to stay in the front of Busnelli. But then we had the safety car when the pitstop window open, and we were very, very lucky. We pitted immediately and went out in the right time. It was perfect. And then Gustav just did a fantastic job. Kept cool, keep down. It's his second international race. He's 19 years old. We are so proud about what he did today.”



Stephane Richelmi #24 H24 Racing H24:
“The first feeling is just a great achievement, because we're working a lot. So, we are pleased to be at the finish line, this was the first target obviously. Then, of course, we were looking for the pace and we know we're missing some, but we are here to improve. It's really important for us to be competing against the others in real racing, because we're discovering things that we cannot understand by just doing some testing.



“So, it's really important for us to be to be here, even if we're not now racing the others.I had some good moments at the beginning, was able to gain some position in the first laps and then we were just targeting to finish the race. I mean it's seems strange, but we finished the race with a fuel cell hydrogen car which is already something huge”





ELMS photo J Ebrey

Permanent-URL: http://www.automobilsport.com/cool-racing-wins-first-italian-round-calendar---237649.html

14.05.2022 / MaP

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