Trofeo World Series 2013 - Abu Dhabi
Barde claims the last 2013 Trofeo Maserati race
Ange Barde claimed the final race in the 2013 Maserati Trofeo MC World Series. The Frenchman’s victory in this final round saw him score a hat-trick of wins in endurance events after he triumphed at Shanghai and Sonoma.
Barde lined up on third but swept into top spot at turn 2; a position he held until the end. Chasing him was Swiss Team’s Mauro Calamia and newly-crowned champion Renaud Kuppens with Mikkel Mac and Patrick Zamparini not far behind. Alan Simoni, one of the season’s main players along with his partner, Riccardo Ragazzi, left the scene early on following a clash with the No.7 car, being driven at the time by Giuseppe Fascicolo. Fascicolo managed to hobble into the pits for the endurance race’s obligatory stop but was forced to pull out with a damaged radiator.
The round of pit stops shuffled the pack behind Barde before he went on to claim victory. Second on the podium was Mikkel Mac who overtook Mauro Calamia in the pit lane by making the most of the 15 extra seconds the Swiss man had to pull in for. Thanks to this result, and to Ragazzi and Simoni’s retirement, Mac secured the Pirelli Drivers Cup.
Renaud Kuppens also had to spend extra time in the pit lane before going on to finish fourth. His Overall title is his second straight win in the Trofeo Maserati. Before him, the title was taken by Italians Pietro Zumerle (2010) and David Baldi (2011).
On Thursday, first spot went to Andrea Cecchellero and Renaud Kuppens (for his eighth win of the season).
The futuristic Abu Dhabi circuit also staged the awards ceremony where the titles were handed out to Renaud Kuppens (Overall Trofeo), Mikkel Mac (Pirelli Drivers Cup and Under-30 Trofeo), Swiss Team (Pirelli Team Cup) and Mathijs Bakker (Over-50 Trofeo). Kuppens also pocketed the Pole position and Trofeo Europa (reserved to the driver who tops the table after the European legs).
The Belgian champion was presented with a special “Montante for Maserati 8CTF single speed” bicycle, one of only 200 examples. The two-wheeler was created to mark Wilbur Shaw’s win in the Indy 500 at the wheel of a Maserati 8CTF.
The provisional 2014 calendar has been announced with races to be held at Spa (Belgium), Hungaroring (Hungary), Japan, Usa, Shanghai (China) and Abu Dhabi (United Arab Emirates).
Ange Barde (Race 3 winner): “I am pleased to have ended the year with another win; the third in succession if you just consider the endurance events. Today Renaud got off to a great start but then I did well to overtake him at the second turn and move into the lead. The aim was to stay out in front so that I kept the tyres in good shape. I kept on pushing even after the pit stop as I didn’t want to take any risks. In the end I was able to celebrate. It has been a good day for me, my partners and for Maserati. I hope things go as well next year”.
Renaud Kuppens (2013 Maserati Trofeo MC World Series champion): “I did well in the championship, especially early on when I built up a healthy points advantage over the other drivers. In the second half of the season I focused on managing my lead and avoiding errors. Without a doubt the introduction, in 2013, of the extra time in the pit stops limited my chances in the endurance races. I hope the rules change next year as the standard among the leading drivers is pretty high and we are getting more evenly matched. It has been a fantastic year. I would like to thank Maserati and all the staff for organising a superb series with amazing cars. I has been a pleasure driving them”.