Ferrari Challenge wrapped up its opening weekend of action in North America for 2023 with a bang at the Homestead-Miami Speedway. After two days of testing, an additional day of official practice and now two days of racing action, drivers left the circuit confident they had left everything possible on the table as sunny and dry skies dominated the weekend.
Matt Kurzejewski (Ferrari of Beverly Hills) secured the top step of the podium in a massively competitive Trofeo Pirelli race that saw a battle at the front practically from start to finish of the 30-minute contest. The main antagonist to Kurzejewski was Saturday’s race winner, Roberto Perrina (Ferrari of Seattle) chased Kurzejewski throughout, always searching for a way to peak through, but never finding one. Even out of the final corner, the two cars were nose to tail, but Kurzejewski was able to have an excellent exit from the final corner and blunt Perrina’s chase. Meanwhile, Jason McCarthy (Wide World Ferrari) was always there or thereabouts as the two drivers ahead diced for the win.
In the process of looking for the edge to pass, McCarthy certainly a higher stress on his tires through the race, pulling him back and into the clutches of Manny Franco (Ferrari of Lake Forest). But in the final corner, there was car to car contact and Franco was spun. Race control deemed McCarthy to be at fault and so he was penalized and thus Dave Musial Jr. (Ferrari Lake Forest) was promoted to the final step of the podium. In Trofeo Pirelli AM, Chris Cagnazzi (Ferrari of Long Island) took a green flag to checkers win after qualifying on pole earlier in the day. He had a comfortable advantage, leading home Chuck Whittall (Ferrari of Central Florida) and Tony Davis (Continental Autosport) who finished second and third respectively. It was deeply competitive between the two, however, as they crossed the line just six tenths apart.
Cameron Root (Ron Tonkin Gran Turismo) enjoyed an immense weekend at Homestead-Miami Speedway, earning his first podium on Saturday and earning his first win in Sunday’s race. Run with a single interruption, the Coppa Shell race saw immense action as drivers worked to find their space and successful lines on the challenging circuit. Further back, it was Frank Szczesniak (Ferrari of Tampa Bay) who secured second place, finishing less than a second away from Root, while Saturday’s winner Sureel Choksi (Ferrari of Denver) returned to the podium, but this time in third.
In Coppa Shell AM, Lisa Clark (Ferrari of Beverly Hills) confirmed her status even now as a championship frontrunner in the Coppa Shell AM category with a second win on Sunday. She was once again passed by Dan Cornish (Ferrari of Austin), but she was able to get back by the Texas-based driver and drive away. Cornish finished second on the road, but ultimately earned a 10 second penalty for exceeding track limits twice during the 30-minute race and so was demoted to fourth in the category. Taking his place was Luis Perusquia (Ferrari of Central New Jersey) while Jerri Walters (Ferrari of Vancouver) was promoted to third, marking the first time that two women have stood on the same Ferrari Challenge podium in recent memory.
Ferrari Challenge action will return with Ferrari Racing Days at the Circuit of The Americas April 19-24, with official racing action taking place on the 22nd and 23rd.