Casè/Batiaans - Copyright Maserati/Mario Chiarappa
 

Race track

Vallelunga - ITA
21/11/2010

Vallelunga circuit

Vallelunga is a circuit that calls for an elevated aerodynamic load. The beauty of its two fast curves is to approach them as if they formed part of a slower circuit. Consequently, a driver in command of a car with a heavier load has greater roadholding gains enormous satisfaction from these two bends. After the start/finish line, going into the left hander, 5th or 6th is selected, depending on the type of car. It all depends on the category, the car and the driver. Everybody tries to take the Curvone flat out.

Top speeds are reached just before stepping on the brakes for Cimini. The two Cimini curves are almost always taken in 3rd. Fourth is selected between the first and second bend. On the uphill that follows, the highest gear is opted for; at least 5th. For 6-speed cars, drivers don’t always have the chance to select the highest gear. At the Trincea, unlike Curvone, it’s hard to take in top gear whatever the car. Braking for Semaforo is tricky because there are no references, no signs are there to help the driver.

The track is rather wide at this point as this is the exit from Viterbo and its not easy to find the right braking point. Semaforo is taken in second, in any type of car. It is a gear that is a little ‘short’ and as soon as the corner is taken, the driver shifts up to third before taking Tornantino in first or second. The Esse follows, during which fourth is selected. In third, the revs would be too high, meaning that the driver might not fully exploit the oversteer.

So, though it is possible to take the Esse in third all the way through, it is best to go for fourth halfway through and to hold this gear until Roma, where third is once again engaged. Drivers should switch up halfway through, then it is up into fifth coming out, sweeping again into the home straight.

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