Brno - cz

Bartels-Bertolini's MC12 come back and just miss out the podium

Brno - The second round of the FIA GT championship concluded today at the Czech circuit of Brno.

At the end of the three-hour race, the MC12 driven by Michael Bartels-Andrea Bertolini just missed out on the podium. The Trident pair was just seven tenths off Gollin-Babini (third in the Aston Martin). In second came Deletraz-Piccini (Aston Martin) with Bert-Janis (Saleen) taking top spot. Jamie Davies-Thomas Biagi, in the other team Vitaphone Maserati, finished in sixth place. These results were not a disappointment as they were obtained on a difficult track and in uncertain atmospheric and surface conditions.

Another factor why Bartels-Bertolini did not make the podium was that the lapped Bouchut-Walchofer-Kox Lamborghini held up the Italo-German MC12's effort for third.

The three-hour race started on a dry track after the morning rain. On the front row, Thomas Biagi was sucked into the group jostling for the leading places. Andrea Bertolini was less fortunate. He began well and climbed from seventh to third spot but was forced off the track on the second lap. Luckily, he managed to come back on in ninth place. Biagi, meanwhile, held third until lap 11 when he lost time with an excursion into the sand. Both Vitaphone Racing Team MC12s had an uphill battle. After the first hour and the pit stop to switch drivers, Michael Bartels took the place of Bertolini and Biagi was substituted by Jamie Davies, finding themselves in fourth and ninth place, respectively.

These positions remained more or less unchanged into the second hour with Davies having upped a place to eighth before the second pit stop. In the final stages, Bertolini was the star as, lap after lap; he made up ground on Gollin-Babini's Aston Martin and closed to with a few tenths. However, Bouchut-Walchofer-Kox's Lamborghini slowed Bertolini's comeback for numerous laps.

The Vitaphone Racing Team still heads the team championship with 22 points. Bartels and Bertolini occupy second in the drivers' standings and are now only three points off the provisional leaders, Janis-Bert. Biagi-Davies are ninth.

The next round of the FIA GT championship will be held on 2 July at the German circuit of Oschersleben.