Champion Tavano wins TCR Italy’s a wet opening race in Monza
01 May 2021
TCR Italy’s reigining champion Salvatore Tavano took an authoritative victory in the season’s opening round in Monza. Starting from third on the grid the Scuderia del Girasole’s driver chased Igor Stefanovski during the early laps, then took the lead and pulled away from the rest of the field. Behind him, pole sitter Eric Brigliadori recovered to finish second after a poor start, while Kevin Ceccon completed the podium at the end of a tough battle with Stefanovski and Antti Buri.
Stefanovski made an amazing start from P4 on the grid and jumped into the lead ahead of Matteo Poloni, Jonathan Giacon, Tavano, Ceccon and Brigliadori.
Soon Tavano moved into P2, passing both, Giacon and Poloni; the Sicilian began to put the pressure on Stefanovski and passed the Macedonian in lap 4. Behind them, Ceccon and Buri were fighting for third place, while Brigliadori managed to pass Poloni in lap 6, moving into P5.
Further back, there was another thrilling battle for the seventh position between Giacon, Nicola Baldan and Evegnii Leonov.
In lap 12, Ceccon, Buri and Brigliadori caught up with Stefanovski; Buri was able to overtake Ceccon and then Stefanovski, climbing to second, then the Macedonian made a mistake at the first chicane and dropped to fifth behind Ceccon and Brigliadori.
While Tavano had benefited from the battles behind to create a gap of several seconds, during the last two laps Brigliadori passed Ceccon and Buri to finish second; the last change came because Buri was given a 5-second penalty for a grid infringement and dropped to fifth behind Ceccon and Stefanovski.
Race 2 will take place tomorrow, at 10:10 local times (CEST) with Estonian youngster Mattias Vahtel on pole position of the top-eight reversed grid; live streaming at www.tcr-series.com.
Monza – Race 1
1. Salvatore Tavano (Scuderia Girasole, CUPRA Leon Competición), 15 laps
2. Eric Brigliadori (BF Motorsport, Audi RS 3 LMS), 7.494
3. Kevin Ceccon (Aggressive Team Italia, Hyundai i30 N), 11.234
4. Igor Stefanovski (AKK Stefanovski, Hyundai i30 N), 12.704
5. Antti Buri (Target Competition, Hyundai i30 N), 13.245
1. S. Tavano 48 pts; 2. E. Brigliadori 45; 3. K. Ceccon 34
Picture: ACI Sport
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