Late Race Accident Ruins Risi Race

Risi Competizione looked set to take a podium finish at Lime Rock Park, before a late race accident caused them to finish the race in the barriers.

Olivier Beretta and Matteo Malucelli started the race in their Ferrari 458 Italia from fourth, surviving a busy opening section of the race which saw many cars make contact throughout the field. Beretta took the car to third in class before sliding down the order complaining of a lack of stability at the rear of the car, which later was found out to be caused by a cut left rear tyre.

Beretta handed over to Malucelli earlier than planned, only running 67 minutes before making the driver change. During the pitstop, however, a Prototype car came in to the pits at too tight a trajectory, hitting a stationary wheel waiting to be put on the Ferrari with such force that it moved the car and two of the Risi mechanics, who, luckily, were unhurt. The prototype served a penalty for the incident while the Risi mechanics worked furiously to unlock the wheels and repair the front fender and splitter.

Twelve minutes later saw a full course caution deployed, with race engineer Rick Mayer making the risky call to switch the strategy, which payed off as the team rocketed up the top of the standings. However, just two minutes from time, impact with another car saw the team’s race end in the barriers and classified in tenth.

“I am extremely disappointed with the outcome of the race, but have to praise the Risi team for the job they did to that point,” said team principle Giuseppe Risi. “The engineering strategy was superb, and was wholly responsible for us making a return to a potential point-finishing position, and the crew did a perfect job in the pits under difficult circumstances.”