Monza Superstars: Liuzzi takes dominant victory in opener
|By Andrew van Leeuwen||Sunday, April 7th 2013, 10:59 GMT|
Tonio Liuzzi took a dominant win as the 2013 Superstars International Series kicked off at Monza.
In his first race for the Romeo Ferraris Mercedes squad, the former Formula 1 driver made light work of the field to lead every lap of the race.
He set up the win with a solid start, and had more than two seconds up his sleeve by the end of the fourth lap.
Liuzzi's only challenge came from his team-mate Thomas Biagi, who managed to keep in touch with the leader throughout the race.
There was even a period during the middle of the race where Biagi was quicker, narrowing the gap to a second. However the former series champion never got close enough to mount a proper challenge for the lead.
Luigi Ferrara was a lonely third for Roma Racing, although the Mercedes Coupe only just made the finish, with Ferrara shutting the car down as soon as he crossed the line.
Gianni Morbidelli (Audi Sport Italia RS5) finished fourth after an early scrap with the more powerful Ferlito Jaguar of Andrea Larini, while Francesco Sini gave the brand new Slaris Chevrolet a fifth place on debut after coming winning a race-long battle with Giovanni Berton (Dinamic BMW).
Berton wound up sixth, ahead of CAAL Racing Mercedes driver Andrea Bacci, and Larini, who dropped off towards the end of the race.
Reigning champion Johan Kristoffersson was a shock withdrawal from the race, his Petri Corse Porsche's engine problems leaving him on the sidelines.
Results - 14 laps: Pos Driver Team/Car Time/Gap 1. Tonio Liuzzi Romeo Ferraris Mercedes 27m05.042s 2. Thomas Biagi Romeo Ferraris Mercedes + 0.589s 3. Luigi Ferrara Roma Mercedes + 13.639s 4. Gianni Morbidelli Audi Italia + 23.200s 5. Francesco Sini Solaris Chevrolet + 34.423s 6. Giovanni Berton Dinamic BMW + 34.935s 7. Andrea Bacci CAAL Mercedes + 42.343s 8. Andrea Larini Ferlito Jaguar + 50.088s 9. Mauro Trentin Dinamic BMW + 50.703s 10. Leonardo Baccarelli CAAL Mercedes + 1m05.089s 11. Roberto Benedetti RC Cadillac + 1m07.697s 12. Francesco Ascani Todi BMW + 1m23.251s 13. Gianni Giudici Giudici BMW + 1m35.526s 14. Max Mugelli Dinamic BMW + 2 laps Retirements: Ferdinando Geri Audi Italia 7 laps 'Diabolik' Ferlito Jaguar 7 laps Johan Kristoffersson Petri Porsche DNS Alessandro Battaglin MRT Lexus DNS Max Fantini Petri Porsche DNS