October 12, 2023

D’angelo is GT World Championship Top Qualifier

Genius Racing’s Alex D’angelo is the Top Qualifier for the 1:8 GT World Championship in Sydney Australia.  The Italian’s first World Championship, he secured pole position for Saturday’s 1-hour final when he backed up his Q5 TQ with another in the final round at the John Grant International Raceway.  Going into the decider as the only driver capable of topping overnight TQ holder Toni Gruber, he would produce another 24-lap run and with his Q5 time the quickest of the event he took the overall TQ on tiebreaker from Gruber.  A rough day for Gruber, qualifying didn’t end any better for the Hong Nor driver as suffered from too lean an engine and pulled in after 4-minutes.  Adding to the Genius team’s celebrations, reigning European GT Champion Bernard-Alain Arnaldi make it a 1-2 for the GT8.23 for the round putting the French driver into the four driver Super pole shoot out.  This was duly won by Gruber who now locks his place into the Main final while the rest have to come through the Semi Finals.  For reigning Champion Joern Neumann, a strong finish to Day 1 of qualifying, when he got a P3 in Q3, didn’t carry through to Day 2.  As a result the Sworkz driver will start out his title defence from 6th in the half hour Semi B having qualified 14th overall.

Reacting to securing the TQ for what is only the second running of the World Championship for GT, a very pleased D’angelo said, ‘I am super happy.  This is my first Worlds and there is not more I could hope for.’  He continued, ‘At the end our strategy worked and I am happy to get this hot weather as I knew we could got fast’.  With today the hottest day of the event, he has always been open about the hotter conditions suiting his car better.  Q6 was an anxious 7-minutes however, ‘My engine was really rich and I don’t know why so from the first lap I was scared I was going to run out of fuel.  I knew Jeff (Hamon) and Toni (Gruber) had problems so I was able to manage the throttle but it was close on the last lap.  My team-mate was behind me and I must thank him for managing the pace to help me.  Now I have the TQ I can relax until Saturday and check over the car. I want to thank all my sponsors especially Genius and Gimar for the support and super products.’

With the 2nd place through to 5th getting a shot at Super Pole shortly after the final qualifier, it was 5th place qualifier Arnaldi who went first.  Next to go was Hamon but unlike at the inaugural Worlds in Miami in 2020 when he won the Super Pole, the Serpent driver was not able to better the French driver’s best lap.  Xray’s Natanaele Senesi would be next to go, and the Italian would go to the top but a very fired up Gruber was still to come.  With a 3-minute warm-up followed by six time laps of which the best counts, his first lap booked his direct spot in the final but he wasn’t done continue for more laps until he parked his car in a corner marker.  Afterwards Gruber said, ‘Normally you can stop when you get a faster lap but I wanted to show how fast our car is.  With no runtime to worry about we changed to a different manifold and had a really quick engine.  While it was not the way I planned to make the final at least now we have the first part of our goal complete.

Genius Racing – Italian made, Italian driven!

Top Qualifier powered by Gimar.

Team Gruber powered by Ielasi Tuned.  Super Pole winners.

Friendly Italian rivalry!  Gimar Top Qualifier, Ielasi Tuned Super Pole winner.

View our event image gallery here.


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