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AF Corse Ferrari in the lead at the halfway point

25 October 2020

The #51 AF Corse Ferrari is the new leader of the 2020 Total 24 Hours of Spa, after long-time leader #88 Mercedes-AMG Team AKKA ASP had to retire.

The final hours before the halfway point turned into a nightmare for long-time leader #88 Mercedes-AMG Team AKKA ASP.  First it lost the lead when James Calado (#51 AF Corse Ferrari) overtook Felipe Fraga at Combes, with 13h30min to go. Fifteen minutes later the #88 dropped down to fourth, when twenty seconds were lost during a pit stop. Felipe Fraga, still at the wheel, left pitlane a handful of seconds behind the #98 ROWE Porsche of Laurens Vanthoor. And worse was to come: after an explosion at the front of the Mercedes-AMG, the car lost the front left wheel. Fraga managed to bring the car back to pitlane, but the damage proved too important to be able to continue.

Meanwhile, new leaders Marco Mapelli (#63 Orange1 FFF Racing Team Lamborghini) and Alessandro Pier Guidi (#51 AF Corse Ferrari) were driving like they were contesting a 24-minute sprint race. The former set a new lap record (2m18.146s), but the Ferrari driver still managed to overtake his countryman once, unfortunately by cutting the final chicane. Pier Guidi duly gave the position back, only to stay under the rear wing of the Lamborghini until the latter entered pitlane for a scheduled pitstop.

Being on a different strategy Pier Guidi continued for half an hour longer, and after his scheduled pitstop he emerged eight seconds ahead of the Lamborghini, now in the hands of Andrea Caldarelli. At the halfway point, Pier Guidi had managed to extend his lead to 13 seconds.

After twelve hours of racing the #78 Barwell Motorsport Lamborghini holds the lead the Silver Cup, with first in Pro-Am Cup in the hands of the #93 Sky-Tempesta Ferrari of Giancarlo Fisichella.  In the Am Cup, the #108 CMR Bentley enjoys an eight-lap lead.

Watch the race live on the Total 24 Hours of Spa website, the event's official Facebook page and the GT World YouTube channel.