Comtoyou Racing’s Franco Girolami is on the cusp of securing the 2022 TCR Europe title after taking victory in race two at Monza, with his third win of the season meaning he only needs seven points in the season finale to take the crown.
The partially-reversed grid saw Volcano Motorsport’s Klim Gavrilov start from pole position, with the CUPRA driver leading for the first half of the lap.
Behind him, Girolami had jumped from fourth on the grid up to second on the run to the first chicane, and at the end of the lap the Argentine made his move for the lead.
Girolami cut back on the exit of the Parabolica and held the inside line on the run to the first chicane, where the Audi driver cleanly completed the move.
The points leader had to manage a safety car restart a few laps later, because Volcano’s Isidro Callejas had made contact with the Elite Motorsport Audi of Marco Butti at the first chicane, breaking his CUPRA’s front-left suspension.
Whilst the Sapniard’s car was recovered, two laps behind the safety car were required, and when the race resumed Girolami managed a gap of around three tenths of a second over Gavrilov.
The race was ultimately red-flagged a lap from the finish when Paolo Rocca crashed his Honda into the barriers at the exit of Variante Ascari, meaning the final race result was taken on countback to the end of lap ten.
Girolami won by three tenths from Gavrilov, whilst the podium was completed by RC2’s Sergio López, who had started on the front row, after Target Competition’s Nicola Baldan was handed a post-race five-second penalty for cutting the first chicane and not giving the place back. It marked the Venezuelan racer’s first podium finish in the series.
That penalty left Baldan to finish in fourth, ahead of the independently-entered Hyundai of Michele Imberti in fifth, the Italian finishing the race where he started it.
Felipe Fernández was sixth, ahead of Halder Motorsport’s Jack Young in seventh. The Northern Irishman demonstrated strong pace, making more places than any other driver after he had started from 20th following a poor qualifying and a penalty for an incident with Evgenii Leonov in qualifying.
Comtoyou Racing’s Tom Coronel likewise made good progress from a poor qualifying to finish in eighth.
Target’s Josh Files was ninth, keeping alive only a slim mathematical chance of taking the title, with Aggressive Team Italia’s Pepe Oriola completing the top ten.
Felice Jelmini had been making steady progress from 16th on the grid and was up to seventh by lap eight when he made contact with Young at the Variante Ascari, causing damage to his Hyundai that forced him to retire to the pits.
Race one winner John Filippi also dropped out of the race on lap eight when his left-rear tyre deflated following contact with Imberti and Fernández on the lap of the restart.
Heading to the Barcelona season finale Girolami has one hand on the title with 354 points, ahead of Files (265), Gavrilov (249), Coronel (234) and Callejas (223).
|1||72||Franco GIROLAMI||Comtoyou Racing||Audi RS3 LMS TCR II||10||22:01.435||1:58.064||4|
|2||14||Klim GAVRILOV||Volcano Motorsport||CUPRA Leon Competición TCR||10||0.326||1:57.917||1|
|3||37||Sergio LÓPEZ||Auto Club RC2 Valles||CUPRA Leon Competición TCR||10||3.972||1:58.467||2|
|4||8||Nicola BALDAN||Target Competition||Hyundai Elantra N TCR||10||6.124||1:58.087||9|
|5||144||Michele IMBERTI||Michele Imberti||Hyundai i30 N TCR||10||7.468||1:58.736||5|
|6||19||Felipe FERNÁNDEZ Gil||Auto Club RC2 Valles||Audi RS3 LMS TCR II||10||7.509||1:58.327||3|
|7||62||Jack YOUNG||Halder Motorsport||Honda Civic Type-R FK7 TCR||10||7.736||1:57.536||20|
|8||33||Tom CORONEL||Comtoyou Racing||Audi RS3 LMS TCR II||10||11.747||1:58.143||17|
|9||99||Josh FILES||Target Motorsport||Hyundai Elantra N TCR||10||13.005||1:58.576||12|
|10||74||Pepe ORIOLA||Aggressive Team Italia Asd||Hyundai Elantra N TCR||10||13.441||1:58.479||13|
|11||111||Marco BUTTI||Élite Motorsport by Comtoyou||Audi RS3 LMS TCR II||10||14.754||1:58.447||6|
|12||7||Mike HALDER||Halder Motorsport||Honda Civic Type-R FK7 TCR||10||16.124||1:59.437||15|
|13||24||Jáchym GALÁŠ||Hyundai Janík Motorsport||Hyundai Elantra N TCR||10||16.842||1:59.317||8|
|14||110||Viktor DAVIDOVSKI||Comtoyou Racing||Audi RS3 LMS TCR II||10||17.355||1:59.807||18|
|15||11||Paolo ROCCA||Paolo Rocca||Honda Civic Type-R FK7 TCR||10||17.812||1:59.189||24|
|16||9||Matteo POLONI||Matteo Poloni||Audi RS3 LMS TCR II||10||18.821||1:59.573||23|
|17||3||Giacomo GHERMANDI||Lema Racing||CUPRA Leon Competición TCR||10||20.697||1:59.856||19|
|18||12||Rubén FERNÁNDEZ Gil||Auto Club RC2 Valles||Audi RS3 LMS TCR II||10||21.356||1:59.160||11|
|19||53||Michelle HALDER||Halder Motorsport||Honda Civic Type-R FK7 TCR||10||24.638||1:59.963||7|
|20||73||Václav JANÍK||Hyundai Janík Motorsport||Hyundai Elantra N TCR||10||26.904||2:00.571||21|
|21||16||Evgenii LEONOV||Volcano Motorsport||CUPRA Leon Competición TCR||10||35.899||1:59.411||22|
|22||27||John FILIPPI||Sébastien Loeb Racing – Bardahl Team||CUPRA Leon Competición TCR||8||+ 2 LAPS||1:59.556||10|
|23||44||Felice JELMINI||Target Competition||Hyundai Elantra N TCR||8||+ 2 LAPS||1:57.763||16|
|R||26||Isidro CALLEJAS||Volcano Motorsport||CUPRA Leon Competición TCR||1||DNF||2:07.735||14|
|NS||64||Levente LOSONCZY||Aggressive Team Italia Asd||Hyundai Elantra N TCR||–||DNS||N/A||–|