Maiden success for BDR Competition as Pro-Am battle steals the show
BDR Competition’s Amaury Bonduel bounced back from disappointment in race one to clinch his maiden Lamborghini Super Trofeo Europe victory in Saturday’s second 50-minute encounter at Spa-Francorchamps. The local driver, hailing from nearby Baisy-Thy, started second on the grid and first of the Pro class entries but dropped to fourth overall early on. Strong pace in the first stint ensured Bonduel came out of the pit-stops in front of the chasing Loris Spinelli (#61 Bonaldi Motorsport) who, despite taking the chequered flag first on the road, finished second following a post-race time penalty for team-mate Max Weering. Weering and Spinelli do however maintain a strong championship points advantage heading into the penultimate round of the season in Barcelona at the end of September. The Dutch-Italian pairing head to Spain with 120 points, with Bonduel the nearest rival on 83 points.
Speaking about his victory, Amaury Bonduel (#28 BDR Competition) said: “I am very happy to take my first victory in Super Trofeo, and also at home in Belgium, it is a fantastic feeling. This is our first season in the championship and first with the BDR Competition team so our aim was to learn as much as we could and achieve good results. Unfortunately, the championship is a bit difficult to fight for, but we will try to do our best in the remaining rounds. Yesterday, we had a problem with our team radio, so I missed coming into the pits, which was a big shame. But today, I knew that I just had to push as hard as I could, and it worked.”
The field was reduced to 35 cars for the start of race two, with the pair of Micanek Motorsport entries of Bronislav Formanek/Karol Basz pulling out following an engine problem on the formation lap in race one while team-mates Libor Dvoracek and Kurt Wagner withdrew after free practice due to a heavy accident for Dvoracek at Blanchimont.
After producing a superb lap in second qualifying, it was the Pro-Am partnership of Lewis Williamson and Massimo Ciglia that led off the rolling start, with the Leipert Motorsport car of Brendon Leitch, the Bonaldi Motorsport machine of Martin Kodric and the slower-starting Bonduel fighting for second on the approach to La Source. That squabbling allowed Race 1 winner Milan Teekens (Target Racing) into third place on exit, but the #54 Huracán would not last long as the Dutchman pulled into the pits just as the field was released from the first of three safety car interventions.
A collision at Les Combes involving Emanuel Colombini and Antonios Vossos left Lamborghini Cup contender Gerard van der Horst nowhere to go, and the latter hit Vossos’ car. Earlier in the lap, Am polesitter Andrzej Lewandowski tagged the back of the #51 Rexal FFF Racing Team Pro-Am entry of Oscar Lee, who in turn spun around Gabriel Rindone at La Source. Lewandowski received a drivethrough penalty as a result, costing him the Am victory and points lead.
Williamson led away from the restart, but the race was neutralised once more after the Arkadia Racing car of Johan Boris Scheier was spun around by Weering as the pair disputed 11th place on the entry to Bruxelles. Weering received a 10-second penalty for the action. On the same lap, Alfredo Hernandez Ortega went off on the exit of Les Combes, while Scheier also parked up on the motorbike section of Speaker’s.
The order at the top remained the same until the mandatory pit-stop window opened after 20 minutes, with Williamson around two seconds clear of Leitch, with Kodric close behind in third. Having changed with Weering, Spinelli then began to make ground and was challenging the back of Bonduel for several laps before the safety car came out for the third time, as Kodric’s team-mate Sandro Mur slid off the track at the exit of Courbe Paul Frère.
Ciglia, now at the wheel of the #27 Oregon Team car, held onto the lead but immediately came under attack from Bonduel at La Source when the race restarted. Bonduel’s ambition allowed Spinelli to get a run on him down the Kemmel Straight, with Spinelli taking second before Les Combes and then the lead around the outside of Ciglia. Bonduel also overtook Ciglia at Les Combes for second.
While Spinelli was unable to open the necessary margin over Bonduel to cling onto victory, the pick of the action was in the Pro-Am class behind entering the final five minutes. Ciglia had to defend from the #9 Target Racing car of Milan Petelet and Dmitry Gvazava, who in turn was under attack from Dan Wells in the #51 car. Gvazava and Ciglia exchanged turns in the lead, but Gvazava’s race ended after Wells made contact with the #9 at Bruxelles; Wells was penalised 10-seconds as a result.
That contact elevated Emanuele Zonzini to second place and the VS Racing driver claimed the victory on the road after a sensational final-corner pass on Ciglia but was demoted to second following a time penalty.
Arkadia Racing’s Stéphan Guerin took the Am class victory after erstwhile points leader Lewandowski’s drivethrough took the Polish driver out of contention. Lewandowski eventually finished fifth in class, enabling Guerin to take the lead of the championship by three points from Rindone. Rexal FFF Racing Team’s Claude-Yves Gosselin and Marc Rostan completed the podium in third place.
In the Lamborghini Cup, Belgian siblings Benoît and François Semoulin (#26 Semspeed) completed a clean sweep of wins at home, with Donovan and Luciano Privitelio coming home second. The #8 Rexal FFF Racing Team duo survived contact with Hernandez Ortega at La Source in the early stages and finished just over eight seconds adrift of Semoulin at the end. Past class champion Hans Fabri was third for Imperiale Racing.
Lamborghini Super Trofeo Europe – 2022 Calendar
Round 1: Imola (Italy), 1-3 April
Round 2: Le Castellet (France), 3-5 June
Round 3: Misano (Italy), 1-3 July
Round 4: Spa-Francorchamps (Belgium) 29-30 July
Round 5: Barcellona (Spain) 30 September-2 October
Round 6: Portimão (Portugal), 3-4 November
Finals: Portimão (Portugal), 5-6 November