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Maserati in South America on the Prowl for the Title
This is the first match point for Michael Bartels and Andrea Bertolini, two Maserati drivers who will have the chance to close the driver's classification and take the world title at the Interlagos racetrack in San Paolo, Brazil, this weekend.
It will mark the next-to-last round of the FIA GT1 World Championship.
The reigning champions, driving Vitaphone Racing Team's Maserati MC12 no. 1, has a 35-point advantage over their closest contender, German driver Thomas Mutsch. Mutsch gave greater advantage to Bartels/Bertolini in the previous race in the new Navarra racetrack in Spain when he was unable to score points. Bartels/Bertolini still have to deal with 40-kg ballast imposed on them as “success ballast”, which is nevertheless 10 kg less than what they were carrying in the Spanish round.
Maserati arrives in South America holding the leadership in the team classification (Vitaphone Racing Team has 160 points, against Reiter team's 142 points with the Lamborghini) and in the SRO Trophy for Carmakers (233 against Aston Martin's 205).
These points were also earned thanks to the performance of the other two Maserati MC12s, belonging to Triple H Team Hegersport as well as Vitaphone Racing Team's Maserati no. 2. The latter is driven by Miguel Ramos and Enrique Bernoldi, and Bernoldi is particularly motivated to do well in his home turf of San Paolo, which is hosting a FIA GT round for the first time.
Schedule (local time)
Qualifying practices: Saturday 27 November, 9 a.m. – 10 a.m.
Qualifying race: Saturday 27 November, 2.30 p.m. - 3.30 p.m.
Championship Race: Sunday 28 November 3 p.m. - 4 p.m.