JEREZ, Spain – Anyone that visits southern Spain would have to agree the scenery, culture and history of the region creates memories that last a lifetime.
After the action at the Circuito de Jerez Sunday, there were plenty of these as championships were decided in the 2019 edition of the Lamborghini World Final.
The chance to win a championship doesn’t often present itself but when it does, the ones that earn those titles seize the opportunity, take hold of it and finish it off.
That is what happened Sunday at the Circuito de Jerez in the Lamborghini World Final as Steven Aghakhani and Chad Reed came into the second of two Am/LB Cup title races as the ones to catch. They came away 50 minutes later, each with a World Title earning the distinction for the first time.
While the two of them can now be called Lamborghini World Final champions, their paths to their titles couldn’t be more different.
Aghakhani is a 16-year-old who entered the Am Class of Lamborghini Super Trofeo North America this year and won five of the 10 races he ran, including the final two of the LSTNA season on Friday in Jerez. The southern California native then made it a clean sweep as he claimed both of the World Final races over the weekend.
“This feels amazing,” Aghakhani said a moment after hugging his father after he rolled backed into pit road. “This is unlike anything I have ever done before. I was so happy with the car and the team did an amazing job. It was an excellent weekend and I am proud to be out here.
“During the second half of the race, the tires started to go away as it started to get hotter,” he added. “Our main focus was keeping the car clean and staying safe and we were able to do that.”
Meanwhile, Reed is a Supercross legend with many titles to his name while driving on two-wheels. He also didn’t run a full season in LSTNA and ended up winning four of the final eight races on the season. He won Saturday’s first race and his second-place finish Sunday was enough to get him the world title.
“It feels great to be a world champion,” Reed said. “It was so fun out there. It was frustrating at the beginning of the race. It felt like you couldn’t go and we were driving around with our hands tied behind our back. At the end the pressure was on and that felt more normal than being frustrated behind the slower cars. I’m happy for everyone at Dream Racing and Mountain Motorsports for this opportunity.
The pair becomes the ninth and 10th Lamborghini Super Trofeo North American entrant to win a class world final.
Ashton Harrison earned the LB Cup win. She led from start to finish to register her first win on the season after finishing second six times in the 12 rounds of LSTNA. The victory marked the first time a female has won a Lamborghini World Final race.
“Finally, the day has come!” Harrison said. “Our Wayne Taylor Racing, Prestige Performance Lamborghini was the fastest it has been all year. So finally, we got to take home that first place trophy and officially become the first female to win a World Championship race. Harrison Contracting has been with me my entire career and I finally get to put this trophy on the stack with everything. I am happy to get my first race win in the last one of the year.”
There was added drama at the end of race two as a tie-breaker was needed to determine the Pro class World Final champion.
Andrea Amici and Sandy Mitchell won the race over the No. 31 entry from Europe. Because the same cars finished 1-2 in the reverse order Saturday, it was on to tie-breakers to see who would be the World Final champion.
The first tie-breaker is a car’s finish in each race, and because each car finished first and second over the weekend, the next one had to be used. That was which car had the most wins from all global Lamborghini series. The No. 31 had more across those series and therefore, they were named the World Final Pro Class champions.
“It was a great win today,” Amici said. “Sandy did a great start staying with the firsts in the beginning. I found myself with a big gap for the second stint, so I managed only the gap between me and the 31 car. It was an amazing team performance.
“The car was just mega during all sessions, he added. “We leave Jerez with two wins, and the best results overall in the World Final also considering qualifying. We finished second, but we feel we are the real winners of the Lamborghini World Final. Thanks to Sandy and Prestige Performance, Wayne Taylor Racing for the great season.”
“Great race for Andrea, myself and the WTR Team,” Mitchell added. “I had a good opening stint staying with the P2 overall. I knew that we would be faster in the second half of the race, so we were able to get into the lead and we are delighted with the win.
“We had a fantastic race today. I managed to stick in P2 behind the leader of the class. After the pit stops, I was able to get into the lead and get a nice gap. Car No. 31 was closing down on us towards the end but we managed to stay ahead of them and win today’s race. First and Second in the two World Final races and a point for Pole, which was dead equal to the other car.”
Damon Ockey and Jacob Eidson were the dominant team in the LSTNA series all year long as they won 11 of 12 Pro Am class races and finished second in Saturday’s first World Final race.
A drive-through penalty for a pit stop violation and a momentary slip where the car went off the track for a split-second, derailed their chances of winning a class world title. They ended up fifth in class and off the podium after a race for the first time all season.