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Facundo Chapur wins chaotic feature race in Rafaela

Citroën Total Racing’s Facundo Chapur claimed victory in an action packed feature race of the Super TC 2000 weekend at the Rafaela oval circuit. He was followed on the podium by Renault Sport’s Emiliano Spataro while Agustín Canapino completed the podium for Chevrolet YPF.

Pole-sitter Chapur kept the lead at the start followed by Toyota Gazoo Racing Argentina’s Julián Santero, just like they finished in Saturday’s qualifying race.

Toyota Gazoo Racing Argentina’s Matías Rossi and Renault Sport’s Facundo Ardusso were battling for third on the first lap, but both made mistakes and lost contact with each other. The reigning champion, Ardusso, cut the chicane but remained in third ahead of Team Peugeot Total Argentina’s Mariano Werner.

On lap six Ardusso, Rossi and Santero were penalised with ten seconds for cutting the chicane. That left Chapur as the effective race leader ahead of Canapino and Renault Sport’s Emiliano Spataro in third.

Rossi and Ardusso were battling behind Chapur, who had a comfortable lead, but they were actually down in 14th and 15th because of their penalties. Ardusso overtook Rossi on lap nine, rounding him on the outside at the braking point into the first chicane.

On lap ten Bernardo Llaver had to pit in his Chevrolet with a blown tyre as Néstor Girolami suffered an issue with the hydraulics of his Peugeot and went into pits for repairs and later rejoin the race.

The tyre debris of Llaver’s puncture forced the safety car on track on lap eleven.

The race was restarted on lap 14 and immediately saw an incident involving Ardusso and Rossi. The Toyota driver’s front-right tyre blew on the main straight that sent him into the reigning champion. The safety car was out again with 16 laps completed to clear the cars after the incident.

At the restart on lap 19, Santero braked hard into the first chicane and overtook race leader Chapur, trying to recover his 10-second penalty.

Not long after that, Toyota Gazoo Racing’s Manuel Luque was clipped by Peugeot Junior Team’s Alessandro Salerno and retired and there was even more drama to come.

On lap 25, Citroën Total Racing’s Federico Iribarne braked late and collected Fineschi and Muñoz Marchesi. At the same time, Santero’s front-right tyre blew, forcing him to pit and change it.

The safety car came out again and Chapur won the race as the maximum time of 50 minutes was reached. The Citroën driver won the race ahead of Spataro, Canapino, Pernía and Merlo while Urcera, Salerno and Muñoz Marchesi rounded off the top eight.

Facundo Conta was ninth in his return to the series after his heavy shunt in the last round and Llaver was tenth.

The result leaves Ardusso on top of the championship standings on 101 points, followed by Canapino on 78, Pernía on 68 and Chapur on 67.

The next Super TC 2000 race takes place on July 21-22 at San Juan.



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