The first weekend of the Aprilia RS660 Trophy 2023 goes into the archives with a great performance by Lorenzo Sommariva, immediately winning on his home track despite the downpour.
The BK Corse organisation has reopened its doors for what will be an exciting 2023 with the new set-up in the Aprilia RS660 Trophy and the new forces in the field that already proved their high level of competitiveness on the track over the weekend at Mugello.
The new format with riders and bikes managed by the teams has rewarded the great work already started at the end of last season between BK Corse and Aprilia Racing, bringing to the track riders of various nationalities, historical teams of the Italian Speed Championship, different liveries, different strategies and above all spectacle.
The weather at Mugello did not make the first weekend of the season easy, but certainly uncertain from start to finish. In the first free practice session it was Lorenzo Sommariva (Nuova M2 Racing Team) who came to the fore from the very first laps on the track that had already brought him joy last season. Constant pace replicated by one of the category debutants Edoardo Colombi (Gradara Corse), immediately at ease with the RS660. Interesting times especially on the water for Giuseppe De Gruttola (Terra & Moto), another great awaited after a 2022 as a protagonist.
Saturday’s double qualifying session reserved surprises and twists starting, again, with the weather. With the track almost dry, all the drivers did their best to take advantage of Q1 with gradually better times from the first to the last minute. Experience rewarded De Gruttola, who was able to set the best time at the right moment in 2.01.512, valid in fact as absolute Pole Position given the adverse conditions in Q2 and the impossibility for everyone to improve their times. The front row was completed by Lorenzo Sommariva, three and a half tenths off the top, with Edoardo Maria Savioli (Extreme Racing Service), another rookie face in the category, third. A twist in the early minutes of Q1 was the unfortunate crash of Edoardo Colombi, a serious contender for pole position after the times shown in the previous sessions and forced to start in last place.
It was a unique race at Mugello, which was also animated by pouring rain just a few minutes after the green light and for the entire duration of the race. At the start, the poleman De Gruttola lost a few positions, also due to the slip in the first positions of Favero (Tutapistacorse) and Savioli at the exit of turn 1. Full-blown brawl in Trofeo Aprilia RS660 style from that moment on with compact groups and braking to the limit including those of Edoardo Colombi, absolute protagonist of the start and good at recovering from the last position to the top five in a few passes, giving absolute spectacle.
After the early stages of the race, there was a five-way fight for the win for three quarters of the race with Sommariva, Filippo Bianchi (Nuova M2), De Gruttola, Colombi and Pablo Echeverry (GP11) setting the pace, especially the Colombian in his best version of the weekend, Sommariva’s direct rival always between first and second place. The exchanges of position between the five continued, with Colombi also leading at times after a great recovery. The key moment was then the fall without consequences of Giuseppe De Gruttola on lap eight and the consequent red flag that put an early end to a race that would certainly have reserved more twists and turns. The classification was carried over to the previous lap as per the regulations and victory in any case unchanged for host Lorenzo Sommariva, who was perfect throughout the first round. Applause for a comeback that is already a record: that of Edoardo Colombi, from twenty-first to second, third Pablo Echeverry. Classified fourth despite the De Gruttola crash, fifth Filippo Bianchi also among the best debuts. Fiaccabrino (RAM), D’Arliano (MMR), Padovan (Gradara Corse), Probst (GP11) and Lanuza (MMR), from sixth to tenth in that order.
Lorenzo Sommariva – Nuova M2 Racing Team: “It was a very difficult race, especially on the water where the most important thing is to get to the end. I didn’t expect this victory because I struggled a bit on the water during the weekend. I would like to sincerely thank Nuova M2 for the whole weekend, they are a really great team, they put me in the best condition to race. Of course I thank all my family, my girlfriend for being there for me in this first race. Winning at home represents double perfection for me and I want to continue on this path. Now Misano awaits us, the Superbike weekend, it will be very exciting indeed”.
BK Corse would like to thank all their staff for their great work over the weekend, the teams and riders entered in the Trofeo and of course Aprilia Racing for all their support. See you at the weekend of 2/4 June for the second round of the season in the context of the Superbike World Championship at Misano.
Photo: Gorini Photos
Press Release: Petrolhead Communication
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