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Alfa Revival Cup Queen of Racing at the Italian Speed Festival

The final event of the 2023 Alfa Revival Cup featured a strong lineup of 27 cars and delighted the audience at the spectacular Italian Speed Festival by Canossa

October 24, 2023: Following the race at the Misano World Circuit, Perfetti secured his second victory of the season after an impressive year.

From the qualifying rounds, it was clear that an exciting show was in store, with the returning driver Niccolò Mercatali (partnered with Luigi Mercatali of Scuderia Clemente Biondetti) immediately setting the fastest lap. Before the halfway point of the session, Giacomo Barri (partnered with Emilio Petrone of OKP Alfa Delta Racing Team) secured the pole position with an unreachable time of 1’54”474. Useless are the efforts of Daniele Perfetti (GTAm – OKP Alfa Delta Racing Team), who came in second, the Mercatali brothers, Davide Bertinelli (GTAm – Scuderia AB Motorsport), Stefano Roversi (Scuderia Bologna Corse – GTam), and Roberto Restelli (partnered with Peter Bachofen – OKP Alfa Delta Racing Team) followed closely behind).

At the start of the race, Barri performed flawlessly and quickly gained a two-second lead over his pursuers, led by the Perfetti-Bertinelli duo. In fourth place, some distance behind, Roversi kept an eye on fifth-place Fabrizio Sabatini (partnered with Edoardo Caponi – Jolly Car Squadra Corse), who had an excellent start from seventh place.

 

Perfetti and Bertinelli pushed themselves to the limit, exchanging positions and setting consecutive fast laps. By the fourth lap, they were already posting qualifying-level times (Perfetti’s best lap during the race: 1’55”599). The competition for seventh place also provided excitement in the early stages, with Luigi Mercatali battling Bernhard Laber (partnered with Lukas Stojetz – Formula GT), who managed to temporarily hold off the Tuscan driver.

As the race progressed, Perfetti and Bertinelli closed the gap with the leader Barri. By the eighth lap, Lamborghini test driver Barri found himself in the exhausts of his GTAm both Perfetti and Bertinelli. 

Unfortunately, Bertinelli, the winner of Monza and Vallelunga, had to return to the pits because of a flat tire.

Barri and Perfetti continued to battle, exchanging positions and exceeding track limits multiple times in their competitive spirit. The race officials issued both drivers a warning (black-and-white flag), but the leading pair continued to challenge each other with aggressive braking, record laps, and overtakes.

At the 20-minute mark, as per the regulations, the pit lane was opened for mandatory stops. During this period, Perfetti, who was in second place, pitted a few minutes before Barri. The Lamborghini test driver returned to the race at the 37th minute to hand over the wheel to his partner, Emilio Petrone.

During this time, Roversi, one of the top drivers, exceeded track limits multiple times, received a warning, and was penalized with a 5-second penalty (to be added to his final race time). Another twist occurred on the 20th lap when Edoardo Caponi parked his GTAm trackside due to the opening of his hood. For Caponi-Sabatini, the third podium of the season, following Monza and Vallelunga, remained elusive.

As the pit lane closed, Perfetti led the race with a comfortable margin over Petrone, followed by Roversi, Bertinelli, Niccolò Mercatali, and Restelli. The battle at the front reignited suddenly on the 24th lap (48 minutes into the race) due to the entry of the safety car. The safety car was required to clear a car that had remained on the escape route at the Rio corner. The neutralization was brief, lasting only one lap, but it allowed the leading drivers to regroup and raised the adrenaline for the final ten minutes of the race.

At the restart, Perfetti maintained his pace and quickly pulled away, securing his second victory of the season. Petrone, who had been in second place with a comfortable lead until then, found himself under pressure from Mercatali, Restelli, and Roversi. Bertinelli was absent from the scene, forced to make another pit stop due to a second flat tire.

The battle for the second position heated up, and at the Rio corner, the contenders arrived side by side. Petrone had contact with a lapped car. Mercatali, Restelli, and Roversi took advantage of their opponent’s uncertainty and passed him.

With Perfetti headed for victory, Restelli and Mercatali added excitement to the final laps as they fought with determination and fairness. Two laps from the finish, Restelli managed to secure a valuable lead over his rival. Mercatali, struggling with fuel consumption, had to yield to his opponent and settled for a well-deserved third place.

The race concluded with Perfetti passing closely by the pit wall to greet his team, OKP Alfa Delta Racing Team.

Daniele Perfetti said, “We had a blast, Davide (Bertinelli), Giacomo (Barri), and I, making overtakes and counter-overtakes. In our excitement, we even exceeded track limits a few times. At a certain point in the race, I thought it would be better to pit earlier because I was having so much fun, and I thought it was best not to get too carried away and end up in the gravel. So, I went back to the pit lane. I passed very close to the pit wall under the checkered flag, and the race officials scolded me for that. I promise not to do it again. My heartfelt congratulations to Canossa for organizing and managing this wonderful championship, and we’ll see you next year.

Peter Bachofen said, “The weekend didn’t start well for us in qualifying due to a fifth gear problem, which prevented us from reaching our full potential. However, during the race, we resolved everything, and thanks to the team, the car performed very well. During my stint, I stayed around sixth place, and when Roberto (Restelli) took over the car, he did the rest, achieving a great second place. We are very satisfied. The championship is fun and well-organized thanks to Canossa’s work, and I give them my compliments. Keep it up.”

Niccolò Mercatali added, “The safety car helped me have a strong finish, although I had already made some progress. It was getting hot in the car and, in the last two laps, I had a problem with fuel consumption while I was in second place. Due to this issue, Roberto (Restelli) passed me, and I preferred to back off because I was afraid of running out of fuel. After the incident at Monza, where we were blameless, our return was definitely positive. We are happy to be part of the Alfa Revival Cup.”

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