VALENCIA, Spain – Vittorio Ghirelli enjoyed a perfect start to the NASCAR GP Spain weekend at Circuit Ricardo Tormo on Friday.
The Italian took the green flag for round seven of the EuroNASCAR 2 season from the pole and led the entire 15 lap distance to earn his third-straight victory and pad his point lead in the process.
In the closing stages the Hendriks Motorsport driver was put under pressure by his teammate Martin Doubek, but Ghirelli fended off the Czech’s last lap dash and won his third consecutive race. It was his fourth series victory.
The Italian opened a gap on his chaser right at the start despite a quick shower hitting part of the track. On lap two, the safety car was deployed due to an incident involving Giovanni Trione and Simon Pilate.
Ghirelli had a good restart and drove away again when the green flag waved. In the closing stages, Ghirelli had issues with the power steering of his No. 18 Ford Mustang and Doubek was quick to catch up. The two teammates even made contact in the last lap, but the Rome native defended his lead to capture the checkered flag.
“It was a tough race in tricky conditions,” said Ghirelli. “Due to an issue with the power steering my teammate was able to catch up. I didn’t mind that we had an intense battle in the end, that’s NASCAR racing and as long it stays fair everything is fine for me. We did what we needed to do and we want to carry on like this.”
It was an eventful race for second-placed Doubek. The series veteran survived an intense battle with Nicholas Risitano for second before chasing down Ghirelli. Risitano completed the overall podium and kept his championship hopes alive. Second in the overall standings, Tobias Dauenhauer struggled with the balance of his No. 50 Mustang. The German limited damage by finsihing fourth place and won the race in the Rookie Trophy classification.
Vladimiros Tziortzis ended up fifth overall and second in the Rookie Trophy. A tire rub halfway through the race shattered Alessando Brigatti’s dream of a podium finish. The Feed Vict Racing driver was able to stay inside the top-10 and finish sixth. CAAL Racing’s Dylan Derdaele closed the Rookie Trophy podium in seventh overall.
PK Carsport’s Julia Landauer finished eighth and won the Lady Trophy. Kenko Miura returned to the NASCAR Whelen Euro Series at the wheel of the No. 99 DF1 Racing Chevrolet, finishing ninth to take the Legend Trophy.