Monza, 4 November 2018 – Christophe Hurni (Team Zenith Sion – Lausanne) took the championship in Coppa Shell with a lights to flag victory. As overcast skies rolled in over the Temple of Speed, Christophe made a perfect start and held his lead into the first chicane.
Dramatic Opening Lap. The Coppa Shell category was interrupted by a single safety-car period when two incidents required clean-up on the opening lap. The first predictably occurred in the first chicane when two mid-pack cars came together at the end of Monza’s long main straight. Some additional door banging involving Erich Prinoth (Ineco – MP Racing) and another car in the same chicane caused a bit of bodywork to begin to rub on Erich’s tire. The Italian soldiered on, at speed, but the tire predictably let go just prior to the Ascari chicane, leaving a significant amount of debris and fluid on track.
Tippl Attempts Fight Back. The safety car period was a bit of a gift for Thomas Tippl (Scuderia Corsa – Ferrari Beverly Hills). Thomas was swamped at the start, falling from the front row to 4th by the time the safety-car was called. Once the race got back under way, Thomas was able to set a sequence of fastest laps, earning third position with a daring pass down the inside into the parabolica with 15 minutes to go and set about hunting down Tani Hanna (Scuderia Lebanon). The APAC driver held his own despite an overly optimistic move from Thomas, again into the Parabolica that did not stick.
Final Laps. With Christophe well and truly clear of Tanni, it seemed the race would resolve without great drama with Christophe leading Tanni, leading Tippl to the line. On the final lap, however, Tanni made a mistake into the second chicane and ran wide. The paved run-off ensured he was able to rejoin quickly, but the week’s rain and humidity meant that the run-off was wet. The resulting loss of grip meant that he was virtually defenseless against Thomas who seized the moment to take the inside line at the first Lessmo. Forced off of a dry line that had formed, Tanni became a passenger and spun into the gravel trap outside Lesmo 1. This promoted Manuela Gostner (Ineco – MP Racing) to the third and final step on the podium.