2013 Auto GP car impresses at Barcelona The 2013 Auto GP racecar left a strong impression in the first day of collective testing at Barcelona. Driven by reigning Champion Adrian Quaife-Hobbs and followed on-track by the personnel of Coloni Motorsport, the new car clocked the fastest lap of the day in 1:32.857, 1.182 seconds quicker than the best 2012 model. The Italian-based organization was thus rewarded with a successful run after the tough job done so far. In addition to the crude speed, the car also proved reliable and consistent, logging 42 laps with no issues.
Vittorio Ghirelli was the fastest man of the field using the 2012-spec car. The Roman, fielded by Super Nova and at his maiden Auto GP experience, topped Daniel De Jong (Manor MP Motorsport) and Sergio Campana (Zele Racing). All three will return on-track tomorrow, while Kimiya Sato is set to leave earlier. The Japanese man, driving for Euronova, rounded out the top-5. Another driver will be leaving - 6th-placed Rodolfo Gonzalez will hand his Manor MP car to Jordan King. Giacomo Ricci ended up in 7th, and despite having driven only on older rubber, he proved the steady improvement of MLR71 for the joy of Team Owner Michele La Rosa.
Andrea Roda also enjoyed a positive experience. The Como-based racer quickly merged with the Auto GP environment. Coming from the European F.3, he adapted to a more powerful car thanks to the help of the Virtuosi UK team. He will try to fight back tomorrow like Antonio Spavone, who suffered from tiredness later in the afternoon. The Italian arrived really late yesterday with his team after an heavy snowfall in Britain caused major delays with the flights. Luca Defendi, fielded by Ombra, will also continue his first Auto GP run tomorrow. Two off-track exits plagued the runs of Giuseppe Cipriani and Nicola De Marco. The latter was prevented to put new tires on as he ended up in the gravel trap late in the PM session. The Team Ghinzani-prepared car will be lined-up for Kevin Giovesi tomorrow.
Enzo Coloni:“I'm very satisfied with what we saw on-track today. The 2013 car proved fast as we expected, and we were able to test different components. We will be back developing it tomorrow. As we evaluate the improvement, we must also consider the weather conditions. The cold weather (5° C) made the track about two seconds slower than usual. In addition to the first run of the new car, the young Vittorio Ghirelli ended up at the top of the field using the 2012 car. Despite his age, he displayed some sensational potential by facing experienced men like Daniel De Jong and Sergio Campana”.
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