Circuit race means smooth and even asphalt, no pits, trampolines and other rally stuff. However, sometimes the plot evolves in such a way that we have to recall both rally and rally raids. It is not the reason for clutching heads, but for wisely delighting that the intrigue remains, as the main principle of every race is “Show must go on”!
The show in Mugello started on Friday, as usual, and it revealed that it was not so convenient to have free practices together with a safety car. However, the safety car felt itself so comfortable on the track that our drivers felt shy to disturb it.
#32 Gianmarco Quaresmini: "At the end of my two best laps there was the yellow flag and then safety car. So I had to stop. I even didn't use the fresh tyres and for this we've finished only on p6. But it's not a problem, because the car was good, it will be possible, as usual, to fight for the first position and gain good points for the championship".
#89 Bashar Mardini: "FP was fine, we were good immediately and within 1s of our teammate. We did not get to drive the second set of tyres because too much interruption from the safety car so we were not able to improve. But, it was still good enough for P1 in Michelin Cup and P10 overall. Tomorrow we will bring our swimming suit and hope for the best!"
300 straight ahead, be careful, there is a pit!
During the qualifying we had to completely forget that anything could run smoothly. The rain was falling and stopping, the track seemed to be dry, however, when Bashar Mardini had changed the tires for slicks, it revealed that its dryness was overestimated. In the result, our Canadian driver got the third place in his classification, and Gianmarco Quaresmini got the seventh starting position, as a matter of fact (yes, we have forgotten what it’s like!)
#89 Bashar Mardini: "It was one of those days where the conditions were not cooperative with the strategy. Our first run in q1 was good for p1 and p10, and then the tyres got hot so we came in. Then we decided to try slicks but it was too early, we should have gone again on the wet tires after they cooled off. So we are p3 and in a close bunch with our main competitors. Race will be another story".
400 very steep right, U-turn, be careful, gravel!
(Excuse us, have you got another pace notes?) Gianmarco Quaresmini, having brilliantly started in the Saturday race, managed to get the fifth position. And here the cameras showed that Gianmarco entered the right turn sideling, as in the rally! In several minutes he already rested on the gravel outside the track...
Our driver will return to the race, but he will have the one-lap gap with the leaders till that moment.
300 slow down, it is too slippery
Meanwhile, Bashar Mardini drives as carefully as he can: he feels himself very hesitatingly on the wet track, as he has honestly confessed. He will arrive to the finish the third in his class and will celebrate, with his overwhelming optimism, his first “wet” race with Porsche finished not in the gravel or in the fence, but on the podium.
#32 Gianmarco Quaresmini: "Today it was a very difficult race. I made a mistake on the first lap, spinned, so finished the race at the end of the pelotone. So the goal for tomorrow is to start very well and gain a lot of positions as soon as possible. It's very important tomorrow to gain more points in the championship because at the moment we are only 3 points below Simone Iaquinta who now is at the lead. So I think it's possible to fight for the championship. Obviously it's not easy, this mistake was very big, but I hope for a very good race tomorrow. The car was very good as always, it was only my fault".
#89 Bashar Mardini: "So, today was my first complete race in wet conditions with a Porsche. Ever! To be honest it became quite difficult in the end and I didnt understand what to do. We got p3 so its damage limitation, but we need dry races if we are going to win the championship".
600 right 1 under the checkered flag
The rain had been suddenly turned off on Sunday, and it gave Bashar Mardini the faith in victory. Then this faith inspired his competitors that he overran, and then the judges on the finish who recorded the seventh victory of Bashar in the season!
#89 Bashar Mardini: "So, we return to the top step of the podium. Win number 7. The start was a mess, it was a Cup insalata with a lot of contacts from other cars. We stayed clean and then drove much better pace than race 1. We overtook Pastorelli early in the race and never looked back. We now have an important 3 point lead for the championship. We have a nice 1 month break till monza, a fine venue for the finale".
20 right 2, 20 left 2, 20 right 2, 20 left 2… repeat ten times
That is how the race looks like for Gianmarco Quaresmini: catch up, overrun, catch up, overrun... Our driver, having started at the end of top-20, managed to reach the eighth position in one race! He rocks!
#32 Gianmarco Quaresmini: "I tried to recover and pushed as much as I could. Now we are P2 in the Championship with 17 points gap. I will do my best in Monza!"
Whatever you may say, rally associations are very pleasant for Tsunami RT, as we started in this motor sports discipline. The thing is... Could we please know in advance the rules of the future plot? Usually you expect more smoothness in the circuit races.
However, there is no difference now: the final Porsche Carrera Cup Italia will be breathtaking anyway. The champion neither in overall classification nor in Michelin Cup has not been defined yet, and we are ready for everything, even for the plot of snow and ice Baja, if this is the will of the weather. Show must go on, anyway!
Photo: Porsche Carrera Cup Italia