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Italian Duo of Schiro & Mancinelli Record Top Speeds in PWC SprintX Practice
Posted by: newsla on Aug 12, 2017 - 08:08 AM
Italian Duo of Schiro & Mancinelli Record Top Speeds in PWC SprintX Practice Runs Friday at Utah Motorsports Campus

The Ferrari duo of Niccolo Schiro and Daniel Mancinelli, both of Italy, were the class of the Pirelli World Challenge SprintX field Friday in practice runs at Utah Motorsports Campus in preparation of this weekend’s Security National Mortgage Supercar Grand Prix of Utah. It was both Schiro and Mancinelli’s first appearances at UMC.

Schiro, the former European open-wheel star, notched the quickest time of the overall Friday sessions in the No. 31 TR3 Racing/The Collection Ferrari 488 GT3 with a clocking of one minute, 48.696 seconds (100.94 miles per hour) in the 60-minute afternoon practice round at the 3.048-mile, 14-turn road circuit southwest of Salt Lake City.

Mancinelli, the VIR SprintX race winner and St. Pete polesitter, posted the fastest practice in the morning runs with a 1:48.770 (100.88 m.p.h.) lap as the two Italians prepared for Saturday’s 60-minute, two-driver SprintX feature set for 1:40 p.m. MDT.

“I really like the track and I enjoy driving on it because it's very European style,” said Schiro, 23. “It's not too close to any walls and that makes it easier for first-time drivers to learn the track. The car is feeling better session by session and we're working with the engineers and improving something every time by trying many different settings. Sprint racing is very different for me. I like the American races and I'm happy to be back here. I enjoy driving with Daniel (Mancinelli) since we work well together.”

Placing second in the Pro/Pro class in Friday afternoon action was 24 Hours of Daytona winner Ricky Taylor of Apopka, Fla., in the No. 3 Cadillac Racing Cadillac ATS-V.R., who teams with four-time PWC GT series champion Johnny O’Connell of Flowery Branch, Ga. Taylor clocked a lap of 1:48.903 (100.75 m.p.h.). Third overall was Vincent Abril of Monaco, second in the recent 24 Hours of Spa, at 1:48.967 (100.69 m.p.h.) in the No. 88 Absolute Racing Bentley Continental GT3.

Abril will team up with Road America winner Adderly Fong of Hong Kong in the No 88 car.

Fourth overall Friday at Utah Motorsports Campus was popular Ryan Eversley of Atlanta, Ga., in the No. 43 RealTime Racing Acura NSX GT3 with a 1:49.090 (100.58 m.p.h.). This weekend, veteran Tom Dyer of Corte Madera, Calif., will be Eversley’s co-driver in the two SprintX races.

Rounding out the top-five in the Pro/Pro category Friday was Eversley’s RealTime Racing Acura teammate Peter Kox of The Netherlands in the No. 93 Acura NSX GT3 at 1:49.152 (100.52 m.p.h.). Reigning PWC GT champion Alvaro Parente of Portugal in the No. 9 K-PAX Racing McLaren 650S was sixth overall at 1:49.250 (100.43 m.p.h.). Young Ben Barnicoat of England will co-drive this weekend with Parente.

Leading the Pro/Am division was Jeroen Bleekemolen of Monaco at 1:49.404 (100.29 m.p.h.) in the No. 54 Black Swan Racing Mercedes-AMG GT3. Veteran Tim Pappas of Boston, Mass., will team with Bleekemolen in the two SprintX events.

Second in the Pro/Am was Mexico’s Ricardo Sanchez in the No. 75 Always Evolving/AIM Autosport Nissan GT-R Nismo GT3 at 1:49.454 (100.24 m.p.h.). Two-time Pro/Am pole winner Frankie Montecalvo of Highlands, N.J., will co-drive with Sanchez.

Jonathon Ziegelman of Delray Beach, Fla., set the fastest Am/Am division time Friday in his No. 30 MOMO/Safecraft Ferrari 458 GT3 at 1:51.667 (98.26 m.p.h.) with Henrique Cisneros of Miami, Fla., serving as his co-driver.

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