28th July, 2017 – Lamborghini Super Trofeo Europe, Spa-Francorchamps
In the first four rounds of the 2017 European Lamborghini Super Trofeo Championship Lewandowski and Myszkowski have scored five class wins and three second places taking them to a virtually unassailable fifty-point lead in the Am Chmpionship. Their class win at Spa saw them also finish 2nd overall out of the thirty-one cars entered.
The European Lamborghini Super Trofeo Championship headed to Belgium this weekend for round four of the Championship, supporting the iconic Blancpain GT Series 24 Hour race. VSR entered an unchanged driver line-up with Abbate-Nemoto in Pro, Dreyspring-Liang in Pro-Am and Lewandowski-Myszkowski in Am.
Spa-Francorchamps was a new circuit for Abbate, Nemoto and Dreyspring so free practice was dedicated to learning the extremely challenging track. As to be expected the weather was a protagonist in the two chaotic sessions on Thursday which were interrupted by three separate red flags. The first session started on a wet but drying track with most teams changing to slicks after the halfway point whilst for the second session the track was dry but the curbs and run-off still treacherously slippery. Nevertheless, all three VSR cars finished in the top ten in both sessions, leaving the team confident of being competitive in qualifying.
Nemoto, Liang and Lewandowski qualified the cars for Saturday’s race. Nemoto put the Pro car on the front row with a lap just half a second slower than Championship leader Postiglione’s pole position. Lewandowski qualified on row six, third in Am, whilst Liang would line up one row further back. At the start Nemoto was passed by Grenier whilst further back Liang spun down the order as he avoided another car. Whilst Nemoto battled hard with Grenier out front Postiglione escaped, building a gap of ten seconds in the first three laps. Liang was back in 22nd whilst Lewandowski was 12th and 3rd in Am. On lap six the Safety Car came out for a heavy accident to Silva’s Am car allowing all the cars to close up again. Racing restarted three laps later and the pit window opened simultaneously. Liang and Lewandowski stopped straightaway, giving their cars to Dreyspring and Myszkowski. Two laps later Nemoto pitted and it soon became clear that strategy and pace had paid off for all three cars. Abbate led the race by one second from Spinelli whilst Myszkowski was 10th and Dreyspring 12th. Abbate held on to the lead until forced to enter the pits for a Drive Through penalty for speeding in the pit-lane. He rejoined in 15th but worked his way back to 12th before the chequered flag fell. Dreyspring had a mighty stint, passing several cars and taking advantage of the raft of penalties handed out by the stewards to move up to 5th, 2nd in the Pro-Am class. Myszkowski benefited as well and took the flag in 7th place, 2nd in Am, after holding off a late charge from Negra.
Qualifying for race two was hit by a sudden rain shower which stopped abruptly with twelve minutes left on the clock. As the track dried times tumbled and finding a clear lap towards the end of the session became vital. Abbate fell as far down as 15th while he struggled with traffic but on his very last lap got to within a second of the pole time to grab a place on the second row. Myszkowski and Dreyspring replicated their team-mates efforts in Q1, qualifying on the sixth and seventh rows respectively. A great start from Abbate saw him slot into 3rd place just behind Spinelli and Cecotto who hit each other at La Source on the second lap leaving Abbate free to race for victory. On lap three the Safety Car neutralised the race to recover Bartels who had been hit by Spinelli as he attempted to come back through the field. In the two laps of green flag racing Dreyspring had gained five positions and the flying German took another two places at the restart to move into 6th overall. When the pit window opened VSR immediately stopped Myszkowski who had been running in 10th and trading paces with Giannoni. He handed his car over to Lewandowski just as a second Safety Car period closed the pits. This stroke of luck for the Polish drivers put them ahead of the cars which hadn’t made their obligatory stops. As soon as the pits reopened Abbate and Dreyspring stopped allowing Nemoto and Liang to take over. With ten minutes to go Lewandowski was running 3rd, Nemoto 10th and Liang 12th. A drive through penalty for Giannoni moved Am leader Lewandowski up to an incredible 2nd overall. Nemoto made up four places over the remaining laps, reaching 2nd in class but couldn’t get close enough to Pro winner Breukers to challenge for the win whilst Liang held off a late challenge from Roda to finish 4th in Pro-Am.
With two rounds left to go the top four Pro teams are separated by just ten points with Abbate and Nemoto in 4th place. Liang and Dreyspring now hold a slender three point lead in the equally competitive Pro-Am category whilst Lewandowski and Myszkowski have a fifty point lead in Am after their fantastic run of eight consecutive first and second place finishes.
The next round of the Championship will be at the Nurburgring in September.