SMP Racing On Top in Monza Pre-Qualifying; Silver Cup Entrants Impress

Davide Rigon/Mikhail Aleshin/Miguel Molina - SMP Racing
Credit: SRO Motorsports Group

Davide Rigon put the #72 SMP Racing Ferrari to the top of the time sheets in the Pre-Qualifying session at the Autodromo Nazionale Monza, with the Italian more than three-tenths of a second clear of the rest of the field.

Rigon’s best lap of 1:48.961s was enough to put the Ferrari 488 GT3 he shares with Mikhail Aleshin and Miguel Molina into first place, while the Silver Cup class #78 Barwell Motorsport Lamborghini ended the session second fastest, Michele Beretta setting the Huracan GT3’s fastest time, 0.321 seconds back.

Another Silver Cup machine ended third, with the #54 Emil Frey Jaguar Racing machine of Mikael Grenier, Alex Fontana and Adrian Zaugg 0.014 seconds behind the #78, while fourth place went to the #76 R-Motorsport Aston Martin of Matthieu Vaxiviere, Jake Dennis and Nicki Thiim.

Strakka Racing ended the session fifth with their #43 Mercedes, while the #24 Reiter Young Stars Lamborghini was sixth ahead of the leading Pro-Am Cup class entry of free practice pacesetters Kessel Racing, while the #911 Manthey-Racing Porsche, #42 Strakka Racing Mercedes and #7 Team M-Sport Bentley rounded out the top ten.

The leader of the Am Cup class was the #77 Barwell Motorsport Lamborghini Huracan of Adrain Amstutz, Leo Matchiski and Francisco Guedes.

There was one brief full course yellow during the session when the #62 R-Motorsport Aston Martin of Alex Brundle spun into the gravel trap at Parabolica, while the only other issue was when Pierre Ehret lost a wheel from his #488 Rinaldi Racing Ferrari on the main straight.

Many teams did not use new tyres in either Free Practice or Pre-Qualifying, which means there could be a major shuffle of the order when Qualifying gets underway on Sunday morning, with the opening three-hour race starting at 3pm Sunday afternoon (local time).