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  • Writer's pictureVIVIEN STREBELOW

Ferrari Challenge: Lisa Clark close to overall Top-20 in Shell Cup World Final

American lady Lisa Clark finished P14 in class and was close to finishing in the overall Top-20 in the Shell Cup World Final at Mugello, having taken the North American Lady Cup and Interseries Cup. Corinna Gostner completed the European championship races with a positive second race in P7 in class.

Photo by: Ferrari Races

The Ferrari one-make series continued to showcase great female talents across its categories in 2021 - and not only in the main Pirelli Trophy Pro class, ultimately claimed by Michelle Gatting in a historic-moment for the series.

The Shell Cup class saw more women taking to the track this year: among them, rookie Germana Tognella (Europe Shell AM), Corinna Gostner (Europe Shell) - sister of Iron Dames' Manuela - and Lisa Clark (North America Shell AM), who has been making good progress in the last couple of years in the American series.

Clark previously joined the European grid at Nurburgring earlier this year and continued to build experience, before making a one-off start in the 24H Series' race in Barcelona at the wheel of a Audi R8 LMS GT4.

At Mugello, Tognella was unfortunately not able to enter the final two races of the 'regular season' and the World Finals on Sunday, but still claimed the Lady Cup for the 2021 Shell Cup AM category. On Friday and Saturday, Corinna Gostner (MP Racing) and Lisa Clark (Ferrari of Beverly Hills) rounded out the European and North American series respectively.

In a red flag-disrupted Q1, Gostner was pushed onto the gravel with 17 minutes left into the session, triggering the first interruption. Luckily, the Italian driver could continue and qualified in P21 out of a strong 41-car field. Lisa Clark could not set a timed lap and thus lined up in P39 for the first race in the early afternoon.

Todd Coleman won from pole position the overall classification, as Kirchmayr took victory among the EU entries and extended his lead over Weiland - only sixth across the finish line despite a trip to the gravel.

Corinna Gostner fought hard throughout the race but had a spin while she was running in P18 - which dropped her down the order. She nevertheless was able to recover to P27, eighth among the European Shell AM division.

Having started from the very back of the grid, Lisa Clark had a clean race and took the chequered flag in P32 overall, fourth in Shell-AM North America.

The second qualifying - initially scheduled for Saturday morning - was cancelled for a thick layer of fog that prevented any form of racing during the morning. Drivers of the Shell Cup thus lined up on the grid based on their race 1 results.

American Todd Coleman (Ferrari of Denver) won back to back the overall classification, while Ernst Kirchmayr sealed the European championship with third place and after an unfortunate retirement by main rival James Weiland, who could not avoid the spinning Giuseppe Ramelli at the final corner and ended his race in the gravel.

The race was called with 4 minutes left when Bergeron lost control over the gravel and hit De Meeus as he rejoined the track, igniting a massive shunt. Both drivers were unhurt, but the race ended behind the Safety Car.

Corinna Gostner finished her season with a positive P20 overall, seventh in Shell Europe.

Lisa Clark was P35 - sixth in the Shell-AM North American division.

But it would be only the American woman to advance into Sunday's Finali Mondiali.

And the Coppa Shell World Final race turned out to be again drama-filled, with plenty of Safety Car interventions and a last lap drag race for the title between Ernst Kirchmayer (Baron Motorsport) and Todd Coleman (Ferrari of Denver).

Not even a whole lap had been completed before the first SC was called into action, as several cars spun during a chaotic first lap. Soon, the green flag was waved again - but Yahn Bernier went off and required a second Safety Car neutralization.

Last but not least, Paul Rogers got stuck in the gravel after a contact with Claudio Schiavoni at the next restart - and the world championship title was assigned with a one-lap sprint race - ultimately claimed by European-series champion Kirchmayr.

Throughout the race, Lisa Clark (Ferrari of Beverly Hills) battled for position in the midfield. Despite the hard fights and amidst the many contacts, Clark always kept it clean and defended well from a group of recovering cars, before finishing P21 overall and P14 in class at the end of the 13 laps. A good performance for the driver of the beautiful Gul-inspired liveried Ferrari 488 Challenge Evo at the last outing of 2021 for the fast American lady.



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