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Race report
Ferrari Challenge Mugello - Finali Mondiali

Ferrari Challenge: Fleming wins Trofeo Pirelli Europe Race 2

Thomas Fleming had the satisfaction of bringing the Ferrari Challenge season to an end by winning Race 2 of the Trofeo Pirelli Europe with a dominant performance on the Mugello track, which was made treacherous by the rain that fell during the night and throughout yesterday.

The HR Owen team’s young star made his intentions clear right from the rolling start, inflicting almost 3 seconds on the rest of the chasing group already at the end of the first lap.

Behind him the fight for second place was pretty intense, with Adrian Sutil managing to defend himself from the attacks of Eliseo Donno – crowned Trofeo champion yesterday - and Bence Valint of the Rossocorsa - Ferrari Budapest team.

After starting badly and slipping from second to fourth, Donno got involved in a nice duel with Hungarian Valint from which he emerged victorious, climbing to third, but a few laps later, he made a mistake, slipping down two more positions. The Italian did not give up however and set out to recover, immediately moving up to fourth.

When everything seemed to have been decided, with Fleming heading towards a sensational victory, the race was interrupted by the Race Direction after James Owen beached his Ferrari in the gravel.

The Meridien Modena - FF Corse team driver lost control of his 488 Challenge Evo at San Donato and the intervention of a tractor was required to remove the #26 from the gravel, so the safety car was deployed.

With the group now reunited, Fleming was forced to do it all over again. Nine minutes from the end of the race, the Safety Car returned to the pits and Fleming restarted from where he had left off: already at San Donato, shortly after the restart, he had pulled out a lead of more than 200 meters over his rivals. At the end of the first lap, he found himself with a margin of three seconds over the talented Bence Valint and headed towards a dominant victory.

Behind him Valint had no problems grabbing second place, while the lowest step of the podium was taken by the reigning champion of the series, Eliseo Donno, who was able to get past Sutil just moments from the end. The ex-F1 driver was also penalized with a drive-through penalty (carried out on the last available lap) for an irregularity in the starting procedure.

It was an amazing fourth place overall for Yudai Uchida, first in the Trofeo Pirelli Europe category AM. The Japanese driver from the Rosso Corsa team finished ahead of Szymon Ladniak and the first of his category pursuers, Nobuhiro Imada. The latter however was penalized 25” after the race for not serving a drive-through penalty for a contact at the start.

This meant that he lost out on the podium, moving Marco Zanasi up to second place in the AM category, and Mohamed Hamdi to third. Max Mugelli placed tenth overall and fifth in the class. Franz Engstler, already champion in AM, was forced to retire a few minutes after the first start after returning to the pits.

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