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New Rules Push Maserati Off The Podium

New Rules Push Maserati Off The Podium In Fiat Gt World Championship

The first round of the FIA GT World Championship has revealed the full effects of rule changes with the reigning world champions, Maserati, being pushed off the podium at Abu Dhabi’s Yas Marina circuit at the weekend (17 April 2010).

Although the Maserati MC 12 has proven itself in a wide range of sprint and endurance races in the past, the two teams running the Maserati super car have their work cut out to adapt the car to suit the new format of two one hour sprint races instead of the previous format of a single one hour race, as well as technical rule changes that have reduced the performance of the MC12 along with its ability to maintain performance during the sprint format events.

Michael Bartels and Andrea Bertolini finished in fourth place with Vitaphone Racing Team's Maserati MC12 with the reigning champions fighting for the podium until the pit stop of the "Championship Race", but then as the race proceeded it was evident how much the Maserati MC 12 is penalized by the new rules with respect to its rivals, with the three leading cars pulling away from the lead Maserati.

As a consolation, the other Maserati MC12s improved through the race meeting with the Vitaphone Racing Team’s other car, driven by the Enrique Bernoldi and Miguel Ramos finished sixth but had started out from the back of the starting line due to contact during the Qualifying Race, which forced them to return to and remain in the pit.

Triple H Team Hegersport's no. 34, driven by Matteo Bobbi and Bert Longin, also did well. They also started out from the back and had reached seventh place when the checkered flag was waved. They did not participate in the first race of the afternoon due to a problem which led to loss of traction.

The Triple H Team Hegersport Maserati driven by Alftid Heger and Alex Margaritis started from fourth position, but were delayed due to contact with another car, but nevertheless finished in ninth place.

Next race in Silverstone (UK) on 2 May.

Abu Dhabi
Length of circuit: 5554 m

28° C air - 34° C track

Race results

1. Grosjean/Mutsch - Ford GT - Matech Competion

2. Zuber/Hennerici - Corvette Z06 - Phoenix Racing/Carsport - 23.061

3. Piccini/Hezemans - Corvette Z06 - Phoenix Racing/Carsport - 26.485

4. Bartels/Bertolini - Maserati MC12 - Vitaphone Racing Team - 34.075

6. Bernoldi/Ramos - Maserati MC12 - Vitaphone Racing Team - 53.059

7. Bobbi/Longin - Maserati MC12 - Triple H Team Hegersport - 1:00.556

9. Heger/Margaritis - Maserati MC12 - Triple H Team Hegersport - 1:24.473

2010 FIA GT1 World Drivers Championship

1. Grosjean/Mutsch - 31 points

2 Zuber/Hennerici - 26 points

3 Bartels/Bertolini - 16 points

6. Ramos/Bernoldi - 8 points

7. Longin/Bobbi - 6 points

9. Heger/Margaritis - 2 points


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